Busch Forms Truck Team
December 11, 2009 | 1:58 P.M. EST
Kyle Busch Motorsports will field a pair of Toyota Tundras next season with Busch, a 16-time NCWTS winner, driving the team's No. 18 entry.
Brian Ickler will take the wheel from Busch in stand-alone truck series events while Tayler Malsam drives the team's No. 56 entry for the full schedule.
"Everyone knows how much I love to race, and the Camping World Truck Series is one of my favorite places to race, so to be a team owner in this series is a perfect match," Busch said. "We started KBM two years ago with the Late Model program and this seemed like the next natural step. I'm also very pleased with our driver lineup – having young and talented guys like Tayler Malsam and Brian Ickler."
The No. 18 truck will be sponsored by Miccosukee Resort and Gaming, which is moving its sponsorship from Billy Ballew to KBM. As for Malsam's truck, the team is still seeking additional sponsorship to go along with the current TBD number of races with Talking Rain Actiwater.
Busch's decision to join the Truck Series comes one year after his ex-Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, Tony Stewart, decided to become an owner-driver in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with the Stewart-Haas Racing team.
"I felt like Tony had a good model and hit a lot of great things this year with him becoming an owner in the Sprint Cup Series," Busch said. "I felt like it was definitely something that would work for me in the Camping World Truck Series. This might be a little bit lower of a level, but still there are a lot of people that depend on you for jobs."
Rick Ren, who was the crew chief for Ron Hornaday's fourth series title in 2009, comes from Kevin Harvick, Inc. to serve as Director of Competition.
"People can work their whole career in different businesses all across the country and to have an opportunity at any time to make a move like this is just something you didn't want to turn down," Ren said. "I think Kyle (Busch), for a young man, has a lot on his plate. A lot of opportunities. He's phenomenal at what he does. And for me to get to work with him and his company on a day-to-day basis is a pretty good opportunity and I'm glad to be a part of it."
The team will operate out of the former XPress Motorsports headquarters while Kyle Busch Motorsports continues to be built in Mooresville, N.C..
Busch added he would like to add a third truck to the entity for former series champion Johnny Benson, who was on hand for the announcement, if additional sponsorship can be found.
"We've had a lot of great discussions with folks but unfortunately nothing we could get signed up and finished up for today," Busch said. "It means a lot to me to have Johnny part of our team and to help these young drivers along when I'm not there."