Matt Kenseth and Jack Roush chose for the Winston Cup point leader not to be the 800-mile man Saturday at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Kenseth, slated to start 12th, made a decision with his car owner and crew chief to sit out the event and concentrate on the Cup effort slated to start at 7:20 pm.
In his stead, teammate Jeff Burton started the No. 17 Ford in the Little Trees 300. The 17 team had to drop to the rear of the field due to the driver change.
Currently, Kenseth leads Kevin Harvick in the battle for the Winston Cup championship by 259 points. Kenseth has slipped in the last several weeks, after posting his two worst finishes of the season.
An engine problem at Talladega relegated him to a 33rd place result, and a lap 68 accident landed Kenseth in 36th at Kansas.
Harvick, the pole sitter for the Busch event, chose to accept the 800-mile challenge, as did Cup regulars Michael Waltrip, Dave Blaney, Casey Mears, and Jamie McMurray.
Busch championship contender Brian Vickers will also run the double-header. Vickers is making his first career Cup start in the UAW-GM Quality 500.