NEWS, NOTES & NUMBERS: This year, Toyota drivers have combined for 10 wins, 32 top-five results, 64 top-10 finishes and five poles after 28 of 36 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) races ... Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch are currently competing in the...
NEWS, NOTES & NUMBERS: This year, Toyota drivers have combined for 10 wins, 32 top-five results, 64 top-10 finishes and five poles after 28 of 36 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) races ... Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch are currently competing in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship playoff ... Hamlin is first and Busch is fourth in the current Chase standings heading into Kansas ... Busch has recorded four straight top-10 results in NSCS action.
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 M&M's Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
How would earning a championship be different from all the race wins you've accumulated? "I think championships just kind of solidify how good you are throughout a year and how you're able to beat the best of the best in the weekends that it matters the most -- the bad weekends. You can win all the races you can win throughout your career and stuff and be known for a guy that can go out there and win on a weekend, but to win over the whole year, that's 36 races that you beat everybody else. To be known as a champion is what everybody wants to be known as in this sport. For myself and for Joe Gibbs Racing, that's what we start the year off for is trying to go after the championship. Everybody is always like, championship talk, it's now, 'Oh well, I hope we can win five races t his year.' That's not really what we're looking to do. We're more so concentrated on trying to win a championship."
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Freight Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Are you looking forward to racing at Kansas after having success at mile-and-a-half race tracks this season? "I feel like the bigger race tracks -- the mile-and-a-halfs -- oddly enough, seemed to be our strong suit throughout the year. Going to Kansas, then the bigger tracks after that, I feel like those are the tracks we can perform at a much higher level. Hopefully, all of our focus that we've worked on on the bigger tracks will come to when we get to the track next weekend."
Are you confident in your team heading to Kansas this weekend? "We finished fifth there last year. I felt like we almost had a race-winning car there last year. I think our program is better this time around than where we were last year. If we finished fifth last year, we should improve on it this time around. I'm going to go with an open mind. It is another one-off race track where we don't go there but once a year. Really, it's almost like everyone is going to have to start over. Things that happen within our garage change so fast, the evolution of these cars happens so fast, it's almost whoever can get their car right the quickest at a track like Kansas is going to be good. I have a lot of faith in our team that we're able to go there and even if we don't start out strong, we should end strong."
-source: toyota motorsports