Thursday, March 5, 2015

No Busch brothers in home town Las Vegas NASCAR race

Kyle Busch won at Las Vegas in 2009
LAS VEGAS -- The absence of Kyle Busch and Kurt Busch from NASCAR competition for the first time in 14 years has already been a tangible and impactful subplot early in the 2015 season. Perhaps most of all, it will be felt this weekend as the series arrives in the brothers' hometown, Las Vegas.

With Kyle Busch home recovering from a broken foot and leg suffered in an XFINITY Series race two weeks ago at Daytona and Kurt Busch serving an indefinite suspension from NASCAR for legal troubles stemming from a domestic violence allegation and no-contact order, the season-opening Daytona 500 two weeks ago marked the first time since Atlanta in 2001 that NASCAR's top series ran a race without a Busch brother competing.

The effect has been felt by fan and foe, on track and off it.

The fact is, subtracting the Busch brothers from contention exponentially increases the success odds for the rest of the field.

Kyle, who drives the No. 18 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing, has 29 Cup wins and 118 top-five finishes. In the XFINITY Series, his 70 wins are most all-time -- well ahead of second-place Mark Martin's 49 victories. And before his injury, he was winning an astounding one in every threeCamping World Truck Series starts -- 42 wins in 125 starts. Pretty impressive numbers and Kyle is not even 30 years old yet.

Kurt, 36, who drives the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevy for Stewart-Haas Racing, has similarly proven himself a top competitor with 25 Cup wins and the 2004 championship. He also has nine wins combined in the XFINITY (five) and Camping World Truck Series (four).

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