Kyle Busch: 'We Need to Have an Affiliation'

JGR

Busch described the information shared between Joe Gibbs Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing as “informal. It’s like ... “Hey we’re running these four springs and bars and shocks,’ but in reality what’s your pivots, what’s this, what’s that, what’s everything else?’’ (Photo: Getty Images)

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DORAL, Fla. - Kyle Busch says that Joe Gibbs Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing need to work more closely together if they are to compete against the Hendrick Motorsports-Stewart Haas Racing conglomeration and other teams next season.

While Busch’s teammate, Denny Hamlin, raced for the championship Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway, there was a disparity in victories among the Toyota teams and others, including Stewart-Haas Racing, which won the championship with Kevin Harvick.

“We have four cars going next year and in reality we should have six, no ifs, ands, or buts,’’ Busch said Monday, alluding to the addition of Carl Edwards to JGR, which gives that organization four teams, and MWR’s two teams. “We need to have as much as we can have.’’

Busch views Hendrick Motorsports and Stewart-Haas Racing as one eight-car entity. Stewart-Haas Racing receives chassis and engines from Hendrick Motorsports and shares information.

“We need to have an affiliation,’’ Busch said during a luncheon before Monday night’s Nationwide and Camping World Truck banquet. “It would be nice if MWR ... made us all eight. It would be better for all of us. There’s a couple of reasons that we’re fighting internally why we’re not mingling with those guys quite yet, but hopefully that gets resolved here soon.’’

Busch described the information shared between Joe Gibbs Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing as “informal. It’s like ... “Hey we’re running these four springs and bars and shocks,’ but in reality what’s your pivots, what’s this, what’s that, what’s everything else?’’

Busch said that aero information from a wind tunnel is shared among the two teams but other areas of information doesn’t transfer as well. Busch noted that the two teams have different chassis simulation programs.

“You’ve got to work from one thing,’’ said Busch, who finished 10th in the points. “Everybody has got to decide what we’re all going to use. Are we going to use JGR or MWR chassis? Are we going to use JGR or MWR bodies? Are we going to use JGR or MWR chassis simulations? What are we going to use? Then we just need to go with it and be done with it.’’

Busch said he’d prefer that the organizations use Gibbs chassis.

“I think we could probably learn a couple of things from their chassis group,’’ Busch said of MWR. “I like our body group, but we need to learn from their body group, too. I think they have some things that maybe we don’t have.’’

Toyota drivers combined to win two races this year with Busch and Hamlin each winning one, while teammate Matt Kenseth and MWR’s Clint Bowyer and Brian Vickers each were winless.

“We've fallen short of our expectations leading up to the Chase,’’ said David Wilson, president and general manager of Toyota Racing Development USA, this past weekend. “We've been just a little bit behind, but enough so that it's kept us out of victory lane as much as we became accustomed to.’’

Wilson said he saw progress in the Chase even though Toyota did not win any of those 10 races.

“Our engines are much better, our cars are much better,’’ he said.

The two wins for Joe Gibbs Racing marked its fewest since 2004. This year marked the second time in the last six years that Michael Waltrip Racing did not win a race.

Hendrick Motorsports scored 13 wins with Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. each winning four times and Kasey Kahne winning once. Stewart-Haas Racing had six wins with Harvick winning five times and Kurt Busch once.

Harvick won the championship with crew chief Rodney Childers, who came to the team from Micheal Waltrip Racing after last season. Chad Johnston, crew chief for Tony Stewart, also arrived after last year from MWR.

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