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Kurt Busch Displays New Furniture In Dover

Jeff Hood | Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Friday, May 31 2013

Kurt Busch, fresh off an impressive run at Charlotte, brought his own podium to Dover. (RacinToday photo by Jeff Hood)

By Jeff Hood | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com

DOVER, Del. – Kurt Busch couldn’t resist.

When the 2004 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion met the media Friday morning at Dover International Speedway, he did so while standing in front of a podium underneath the lift gate of his team hauler.

After a reporter complimented Busch on the new and innovative layout, the driver of the No. 78 Chevrolet grinned and said “it keeps me away from the riff-raff.”

Once his press conference got under way, Busch was asked about the faulty electronics he experienced on Sunday night that might have cost him a win in the Coca-Cola 600.

He overcame what he initially thought was a battery issue and finished third.

“We had a cable plug issue. It wasn’t necessarily a dead battery,” Busch said. “It was a plug and wiring snafu.

“It’s something that shouldn’t have bit any type of team out here at the Cup level. It’s not like it fell through our system. It was just a one-in-a-million type chance, kind of like the regulator at Texas for us where we had a crack and we had a fuel leak.”

Kevin Harvick enters the FedEx 400 at Dover this weekend after winning two of the past four races, including the 600 in Charlotte.

One of the most candid personalities in the NASCAR garage who has been known to publicly scold his team, Harvick was asked if his No. 29 Richard Childress Racing group can contend for this year’s Sprint Cup title.

“Right now we are just racing on a week-to-week basis,” Harvick said. “The performance of the cars has been good. We have been able to get to victory lane four times, (including) two points races.

“So I think we are in a good position to contend for it. Everybody is focused on the job and task at hand to be able to put ourselves in position to try to do that. I don’t see why not.”

Marcos Ambrose will have a million reasons to put his No. 9 DeWalt Ford in victory lane on Sunday at the one-mile concrete oval.

If the Australian wins, Richard Petty Motorsports sponsors Stanley and DeWalt will donate $1 million to the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. A smaller donation will be made if Ambrose falls short of a victory.

Ambrose claims it will be business as usual this weekend and no additional emphasis has been placed on preparing for Sunday’s 400 miler.

“We are organized. It’s the same as normal,” he said. “We’ve just got to fight the race track and challenge the competitors out there.

“Hopefully, we’ve got the ability to get the job done.”

A similar charitable program was in place last season for the noted road racer. But he fell short of captializing on the offer.

“We did this last year at Sonoma and it didn’t work out for us,” said Ambrose, who has three top 10 finished in his past four starts at Dover. “So we thought we’d change up here a little bit.”

When Jeff Gordon was swept up in a late-race incident in Charlotte on Sunday, his No. 24 Chevrolet made contact with an area of Charlotte Motor Speedway not protected with by a SAFER barrier.

On Friday, the four-time Sprint Cup champion expressed his displeasure about making impact with concrete. But he added that his opinion will likely have little bearing on tracks added SAFER barriers to potential impact points still exposed with concrete.

“I’m not anticipating any change,” Gordon said. “I understand. Their theory is they go through their testing and see where multiple impacts have happened, highest impact and those things.

“But I’ve got to tell you, hat was one of the hardest hits I’ve had in a race car.”

Gordon wasted little time responding when asked why some tracks are reluctant to install SAFER barriers in all potential impact zones.

“Cost. There’s only one reason, cost. That’s it,” he said.

– Jeff Hood can be reached at jhood@racintoday.com

Jeff Hood | Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Friday, May 31 2013
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