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Busch Wants To Keep Truckin’

Jim Pedley | Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Saturday, October 23 2010

Kyle Busch is racing for more than trophies these days in his No. 18 Camping World truck. Much more. (Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

By Jim Pedley | Managing Editor
RacinToday.com

Kyle Busch almost always drives like he’s racing for his life. For the foreseeable future, he just might be when it comes to the Camping World Truck Series.

Busch’s team, Kyle Busch Motorsports, is having sponsorship trouble. Big sponsorship trouble, immediate sponsorship trouble. Despite being able to win a series-best five races this season, KBM has not been able to attract sufficient funding.

Busch has said repeatedly in recent weeks that he just does not know what the future holds for his team. He said he plans to keep his team running but does not want to dip into his own pockets to do it.

He said all that again at Martinsville this weekend.

“I feel like the rest of this year we can race hard, we can race for wins and we can go out there and do the best we can for all these people,” Busch, who has been behind the wheel for all five of his team’s victories in the No. 18 truck, said. “Next year, again, same thing I said in Charlotte, I’m not any further along than I was there. I’ve sold five races, but we’ll be announcing that partner hopefully shortly in the next couple weeks and get on to 2011 trying to get everything else squared away and sold where they’re no more inventory (of sponsor space) left would be great.”

Busch’s team is only 39 points behind Germain Racing in the ownership standings. He said winning the owners championship might help sell his remaining inventory.

Busch won the pole for Saturday’s truck race. He was asked if that gets him closer to that championship and to solving his dollars dilemma.

“I don’t really think it sets us any closer unless there were points for qualifying,” he said. “For us, I look forward to it. We’ve got a good set of five races here left to go, of course Talladega being sort of a crap shoot knowing anything can happen there. Running well there in the past so I look forward to it.

“I feel like we have a good shot at this and it’s something that I really, really want to do. I know that Todd (Bodine) and the Germain Racing team, they want to make sure that I don’t win the owner’s championship, but Bob’s (Germain) won one before so I’m hoping that I can go out there and maybe steal a little bit of his thunder and bring Kyle Busch Motorsports home with a championship the first year out.”

A week ago, Busch held the grand opening of his new race shop. It contains the usual accoutrements of modern race shops; museum, gift shop and, of course, car/truck building facilities.

It also has plenty of room for expansion. And despite the iffy nature of future funding, Busch sounded confident that expansion will become necessary at some point.

“Obviously, situations have to be right and you have to have long term deals in order to commit that far ahead in advance,” Busch said. “With the truck stuff right now, as we’ve seen, it’s hard to commit the next week so with what I’ve got over there with as much knowledge and as much backing from Toyota and with as much backing from Joe Gibbs Racing that I have, we can go anywhere, the possibilities are endless.

“What I would like to see probably in the next five years is something like Kevin Harvick.  I think Kevin Harvick has done a great job with him and Delana (Harvick) with what they’ve been able to do over there.  I know he’s kind of said that he would like or his goal in the next couple years is to see two trucks and two Nationwide teams.  My goal at KBM (Kyle Busch Motorsports) is to try to get two truck teams going, if not for next year, but for the following season and eventually be where it’s two Nationwide teams and a Truck team or a Nationwide team and two Truck teams.

“As it stands right now, I’ll continue to drive for Joe Gibbs Racing in the Nationwide Series.  We’ll work on some other things as far as some other drivers go on that front if it ever comes to fruition.”

– Jim Pedley can be reached at jpedley@racintoday.com

Jim Pedley | Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Saturday, October 23 2010
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