|Birthdate:||May 2, 1985|
|Hometown:||Las Vegas, Nev.|
|First Career Cup race:||March 7, 2004 (Las Vegas)|
|Career Cup Poles:||30|
|Career Cup Wins:||49|
|Best Cup Championship Finish:||1st – 2015|
With a NASCAR Cup Series championship on his resume and an Xfinity Series win list approaching 100, Kyle Busch remains on the fast track in life, literally. At a relatively young age and in such a short period of time, the Las Vegas native has accomplished a lot both on and off the racetrack.
In order to pursue his racing dream, Busch stepped up his academics, graduating with honors from Durango High School (Las Vegas) a year early.
At 16, Busch earned a pair of top-10 finishes in just six NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts before the sanctioning body mandated age restrictions in its top three circuits.
The next year, in 2002, he finished eighth in American Speed Association (ASA) championship points as a rookie and became a two-time Legends Car champion at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
In 2003, Hendrick Motorsports formed an alliance that allowed Busch to run six select 2003 NASCAR Nationwide (now Xfinity) Series races in the No. 87 Chevrolet of NEMCO Motorsports with primary sponsorship from Ditech.com – leading to his series debut at Charlotte Motor Speedway in May, where he finished second.
That season also saw Busch win the ARCA RE/MAX race at the Nashville Superspeedway in April while making his driving debut for Hendrick Motorsports.
Prior to the 2004 season, Busch posted two victories (Kentucky Speedway, Nashville) and two pole positions (Pocono, Nashville) in the ARCA RE/MAX Series.
In 2004, Busch became the first rookie to finish second in the Xfinity Series standings. He was named Rookie of the Year after he took top rookie honors 25 times in 34 races. Busch set rookie records with his performance throughout the 2004 season, capturing 22 top-10 finishes, five wins, five poles and most laps led at 1,108. His victory total tied Greg Biffle for most wins by a rookie in the Xfinity Series since the program was created in 1989.
In 2005, Busch moved up to the Cup Series where he won the Rookie of the Year crown after capturing two wins, one pole and 13 top-10s. He also combined for four wins in the Xfinity and Truck Series that season.
The 2006 campaign was a very busy one for Busch, as he competed full time on the Cup circuit, raced 34 of 35 races in the Xfinity Series, and seven additional races in the Camping World Truck Series. Nonetheless, he found success at most every corner – winning once and finishing in the top-10 in all of his Truck races, scoring one win and finishing seventh in the Xfinity Series standings, and qualifying for the Chase en route to finishing the Cup season in 10th place.
With 2007 only being his fourth season racing in the Cup series, Busch earned one victory, 11 top-fives, 20 top-10s, and finished a career-best fifth in the Cup Championship standings.
Busch rolled through the Cup Series regular season in 2008, winning eight of the year’s first 26 races in sometimes dominating fashion.
But when Chase time came around, Busch’s season went in a completely opposite direction. He started the playoffs with three straight dismal races and before the calendar turned to October was hopelessly out of the championship picture. He pulled off a 10th-place finish in the final standings.
In addition to his eight Cup Series wins, Busch tied the Xfinity Series single-season mark scoring 10 wins to equal the feat of the legendary Sam Ard. He also scored three Camping World Truck Series victories for an amazing 21 wins across NASCAR’s top three divisions that year.
Busch was back in all three NASCAR Series in 2009, running full-time in Cup and Xfinity, and 15 races in the Truck Series. Despite four victories in the Cup Series, Busch failed to make the Chase for the first time since his rookie year. He only had nine top fives and 13 top 10s.
But, he won the championship in the Xfinity Series with nine victories, 25 top-five finishes and 30 top-10s in 35 starts. He also won seven victories in the Camping World Truck Series with 11 top fives and 13 top 10s.
Even though the 2010 season didn’t turn out like he’d hoped, Busch turned in his best points performance since joining Joe Gibbs Racing.
Busch won three races, led 1,271 laps and captured 10 top fives, 18 top 10s and two poles en route to an eighth-place finish in the points.
After narrowly missing the Chase in 2009 and gaining a new crew chief at the end of that year, Busch entered the 2010 Chase seeded in the fourth position. He came out strong scoring top-10 finishes in the first two races of the Chase to move within 45 points of the lead, in third place, as a result.
But several incidents over the next eight races set Busch back in the points too far, and he was unable to catch up by the time the final checkered flag flew at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
In addition to his busy year in the Cup Series, Busch ventured into team ownership in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. At the start of the season he fielded two trucks, and drove much of the season in one of them.
In 16 starts in the Truck Series, Busch won eight races and captured 13 top-five finishes with six poles. With the help of a few other drivers, Busch captured the owner’s championship in the series.
Busch also ran an almost full schedule in the Xfinity Series. He set a record for the most wins in a season, 13. Additionally, Busch scored 22 top fives and 25 top 10s en route to giving Joe Gibbs Racing its third owner’s championship in a row. Busch finished third in the point standings in the series.
During his busy season in all three premier NASCAR racing series, Busch set a record during the summer at Bristol when he became the first driver in NASCAR history to win all three national touring events in the same weekend.
In 2011, Busch won four races during the regular season and entered the Chase as the top seed. But Busch’s 2011 season will most likely be remembered for two races he DIDN’T run. After intentionally wrecking Ron Hornaday under caution during the Truck Series race in Texas on Nov. 4, NASCAR parked Busch for the remainder of that weekend … leaving him on the sidelines for the track’s Xfinity and Cup Series events.
The weekend off sent Busch sliding from seventh to eleventh in the Chase standings. Finishes of 36th and 23rd in the last two races of the year left Busch 12th in the final standings.
He totaled 18 top 10s in 35 starts. The wins came in Bristol, Richmond, Kentucky and Michigan.
For 2012, Busch finished 13th in the final standings. He missed a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup by a mere four points, edged by Jeff Gordon for the final Wild Card.
Busch won the spring event at Richmond International Raceway and posted 19 other top-10 finishes in his 36 starts. He also had two poles, at New Hampshire and Phoenix.
Busch started a combined 25 races in the Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series with a best finish of second place five times, including twice at Homestead-Miami Speedway during Ford Championship Weekend in November.
In 2013, Busch once again put up big numbers in the win column across NASCAR’s three top national series – claiming victory 21 times including four Cup Series races. He finished fourth in the final Chase standings, 55 points behind six-time champion Jimmie Johnson.
In the Xfinity Series, Busch added 12 wins including season sweeps at Bristol, Charlotte and Phoenix. His five victories in the Camping World Truck Series came at Charlotte, Dover, Bristol, Chicagoland Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway.
In 2014, Busch slipped to 10th in the Chase standings but rebounded nicely the following season, charging through the second half of the year to claim his first Cup Series championship. His title run was even more remarkable after Busch missed the first 11 races while recovering from injuries suffered in the season-opening Xfinity Series race at Daytona International Speedway.
For 2016, Busch was unable to successfully defend his championship – finishing sixth in the season-ending race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, and grabbing third place in the final standings behind Jimmie Johnson and Joey Logano.
Busch entered the 2017 season in search of his second Cup Series championship in three years and narrowly missed, finishing second to Martin Truex Jr. in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In addition to his five race wins, Busch collected a series-high eight poles.
His 91 career NASCAR Xfinity Series wins (total after the 2017 season) is a series record.