By: Amanda Vincent, NASCAR Correspondent
- Busch looks for 3rd straight Loudon NNS win
- Busch seeks 100th National Series win
- Busch win ties Martin’s NNS all-time record
Busch goes after milestone times two in NNS on Saturday
This weekend, the NASCAR Nationwide Series heads to New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the Saturday afternoon running of the New England 200. That track has been somewhat of a playground for Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 18 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing, for the last few years. He has five wins at NHMS across all three NASCAR national series, including the two most previous Nationwide races there. His other three wins include a Sprint Cup victory and one in the Camping World Truck Series.
“Loudon is a pretty particular racetrack,” Busch said. “It’s a flat racetrack, and it’s really typical of a tough racetrack to pass on. You can’t just have a really good race car and finish up front. You have to keep track position. You have to keep up all day and make everything to work.”
Given Busch’s success at NHMS, he should be an expert on what it takes to get to victory lane there, even if though he does say that it is not one of his better tracks.
The New England 200 will be the first race of the two-race weekend for Busch, as he’ll also compete in the Lenox Industrial Tools 301 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, also at New Hampshire, on Sunday. Busch will be looking to reach two milestones this weekend, and both may possibly be reached in the Nationwide Series race on Saturday.
Busch heads into the weekend just one race shy of the 100 NASCAR national win mark. One more trip to victory lane in national competition, and he’ll become only the third driver to ever hit the century mark in wins -- the other two being Richard Petty with 200 (all at the Sprint Cup level) and David Pearson with 106 (105 in Sprint Cup and one in Nationwide).
You can’t just have a really good race car and finish up front.
“Whenever the next one is, I’ll be cherishing it just as much as I did the last one,” Busch said. “To me, I don’t want to wait that long for win 100.”
Busch could achieve that milestone with a win in either the Nationwide or Sprint Cup race this weekend, but if he wins the Nationwide race on Saturday, he’ll achieve two milestones. A trip to victory lane on Saturday wouldn’t only be win 100 at the national level, it would also be Nationwide Series win 49, tying him with Mark Martin for all-time winningest driver honors in the series.
“We’re going to go out there and try to win it like we do every week, but if you can accomplish both of those things in one race, that’d be pretty cool,” No. 18 team crew chief Jason Ratcliff said. “Just to do one or the other would be neat, so to do them both would be a lot of fun. I’d like to get the one that ties Mark under our belt.”
The New England 200 is scheduled to take the green flag at approximately 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday. The race can be seen live on ESPN, with coverage beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET. It can also be heard on PRN and Sirius XM radio, channel 90.