Kyle Busch looks to run his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series winning streak to three with a victory in Sunday’s STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway.
Busch took two out of three races on the recent West Coast swing and scored back-to-back victories at ISM Raceway and Auto Club Speedway the last two weeks. The Joe Gibbs racing driver is hoping to keep his early season hot streak alive with what would be his 54th career Cup win on Sunday.
In his last seven starts at the Virginia short track, Busch has two wins, seven top-five finishes and an impressive average finish of 2.8. Martinsville was a much bigger challenge for Busch earlier in his career, especially during his early years racing under the JGR banner. Busch finished outside the top 10 in three of his first four races there with JGR in 2008 and 2009 before getting his arms around the demanding .526-mile track.
“We’ve run well, the last two years especially, at Martinsville and we’re definitely pumped about getting back there,” Busch said. “I’m hoping we can have a really good car there again this time around, like we did the last several years.
“We led a lot of laps and we were really fast in our last seven races there. Hoping that some of those things we were able to push through there a few times before and get our M&M’S Chocolate Bar Camry in Victory Lane there this weekend.”
Busch, who will also run Saturday’s Gander Outdoors Truck Series race at Martinsville, understands the demanding nature of the track. On the Cup side Busch has two wins, 15 top-five finishes and has led a total of 1,424 laps in 27 career Cup Series starts at Martinsville.
Busch explained the keys to adding to those numbers and continuing his early season roll.
“It’s a tough racetrack and, any time you come in the pits and make an adjustment on your car, you certainly hope it goes the right way, or you make enough of it, or you don’t make too much of an adjustment,” he said.
“The last run can be tricky, too, because you can be coming off a 50-lap run on right-side tires and take four and you’ve only got 30 (laps) to go, or you could have 80 to go and you know you have to manage that run all the way to the end.”