No Advantage For Busch

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The good news for Kurt Busch is he's had previous success at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The bad news is it doesn't give him one bit of an advantage in Sunday's Ford 400 season finale.

Busch won at Homestead in 2002, when the track was a relatively flat, 1.5-mile oval. Speedway officials decided to completely renovate the track immediately after that season ended and transformed it into its current varaible degree high-banked configuration.

The result was deemed a success that included side-by-side racing and much faster speeds than its predecesor. And despite having his notes from the 2002 victory deemed meaningless, Busch is still looking forward to coming back to Homestead and possibly clinching the Nextel Cup title.

"The track is now a year older, so it's a bit more mature and that will help with the racing," said Busch, who brings an 18 point lead over Jimmie Johnson into Sunday's 36th and final race of the season. With the way the corners are shaped here with the flatter entry and the wider exits with the banking, it's definitely a track that you don't have to worry about track position because you can pass."

Busch has been as consistent as anyone during the nine races of the "Chase for the Nextel Cup" and comes off a sixth place run at Darlington last Sunday. He has finished in the Top 10 in all but one of the Chase events, when a blown engine at Atlanta relegated him to a 41st place finish.

But despite "only" winning once during the Chase and three times all year, don't expect Busch to approach Homestead in any kind of defensive mind set.

"We need to go out and attack the race track this weekend with the Sharpie Ford, to lead laps and to make sure we do our job at the end of the race," he explained.

Busch and crew chief Jimmy Fennig went to Homestead to test a few weeks ago and both liked what they learned.

"We went down and tested two weeks ago as well as the No. 48 and No. 24," Busch said, referring to second and third place in the points Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon. "It's going to be a matter of who brings the most information from that test and who is able to execute the proper way for us to come out on top."

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