Seeks Road-Course Win in Third Different Country
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (August 14, 2012) - For the sixth time in NASCAR history, the Nationwide Series will bring their garage across the border to Montreal, Quebec, Canada for the NAPA Auto Parts 200 at the famed Circuit Gilles Villeneuve track. Kyle Busch will make his second attempt at the 2.709-mile road course, in a field laced with road-course experts such as Alex Tagliani, Ron Fellows and Jacques Villeneuve, whose father's name the track is entitled to.
Busch's past international road-course success includes a win in the Nationwide Series in 2008, at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriquez track in Mexico City, Mexico. It was his second visit to the Mexico facility. The young, but veteran, driver who holds the record for most wins in the Nationwide Series, first tackled this week's Canada track in 2009, and recorded a 10th-place finish. This week will mark his second visit to the Montreal facility, but first as the owner-driver of the No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota for his first-year Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) Nationwide Series team. While he has also enjoyed success on the U.S.-based road course Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, it would be a feat and a NASCAR record, for Busch to record a victory at three different road-course events in three different countries.
In order to pursue this accomplishment, Busch will work between two race markets and two countries. While the Sprint Cup Series will hold their weekend event at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Owen Kelly of Tasmania, Australia will help Busch prepare for the Saturday event in Canada. Kelly will support the No. 54 team during practice and qualifying sessions, while Busch remains in the States, preparing his Sprint Cup Series entry for Sunday's race. Busch will make the trip to Montreal Saturday morning prior to race start and will be looking to achieve victory amidst a busy schedule.
Kyle Busch, Driver of the No. 54 NASCAR Nationwide Series Monster Energy Camry:
"One of the reasons I wanted to run this race is to win in three different countries. I am not sure, but I don't think any other NASCAR driver has done that before, so it would be really cool."
Considering a tough weekend on the car and crew, you had a top-10 finish at Watkins Glen. What if anything can you take from that road-course event to the one this weekend?
"Well, the car, for one thing. We made so many adjustments to chassis #001 and feel like it's set up well for another road-course run, that we are bringing back the same ride. The Montreal (Can.) track won't have as much speed or as many inclines and declines as The Glen did, but the car will be adjusted for a slightly more flat surface. We overcame some big hurdles last week, let's hope this week we can be up front again and show that our road-course program is getting stronger."
It has been a few years since you raced this event and you'll miss practice due to the Cup Series schedule. Do you have any concerns about missing that setup time?
"It is not concerning to miss practice, because I feel I have a really good practice driver in Owen (Kelly), who can set up the car well and get me a good car for the race."
Mike Beam, Crew Chief of the No. 54 NASCAR Nationwide Series Monster Energy Camry:
How did you choose Owen Kelly as your support driver this weekend?
"Owen has been a road-course test driver for Marcos Ambrose in Montreal before. He practiced second and third fastest in practice sessions and qualified Marcos' race-winning car ninth last year, so his track record is good. Owen is also relatively close in size to Kyle, so the seat, pedals, etc. should all be the same. This is a similar format we used for Kurt, with Colin Braun at Road America, and we look for good things from Owen this weekend."
Source: Kyle Busch Motorsports