Kyle Busch is off to one of the hottest starts in recent NASCAR history. Entering this weekend’s Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond Raceway, Busch has won three times in the Monster Energy Cup Series season’s first eight races.
His NASCAR betting odds to win the title have increased to +250 at 888Sport; closest challenger Joey Logano is listed at +550. The numbers for Busch to finish inside the top three of the final standings have shrunk to -167 thanks to his incredible run in 2019.
Busch has one Cup title to his credit in 2015, when he injured his leg in a crash at Daytona in February and missed 11 races. Busch ended that season with five wins, 12 top-five finishes and 16 top 10s, despite only competing in 25 races.
His start this year is nearly on pace to double most everyone of those categories from Busch’s 2016 title run.
Joe Gibbs Racing is a Powerhouse
Two teams have combined to win all eight of this year’s races: Joe Gibbs Racing and Team Penske. In addition to Busch’s three wins, JGR teammate Denny Hamlin has won two including the season-opening Daytona 500. By far the Gibbs cars are superior to 75 percent of the field, which will aid Busch in his quest for a second championship.
JGR is part of the Toyota camp and that manufacturer has only five cars total competing in the series this year. That laser focus, rather than the manufacturer spreading resources and energy across more cars like competitors Ford and Chevrolet is another added benefit to Busch’s assault on the series in 2019.
JGR has Crew Chief chemistry
JGR named Adam Stevens the crew chief for Busch for the 2015 season, as he became the third person in the organization assigned to work with the driver. The two had worked together in the Xfinity Series for two years, combining to win 19 of 56 races. Because of that success, the organization believed the chemistry would work at NASCAR’s highest level.
“He’s just so good at getting everything out of your car that it has in it,” Stevens told NASCAR.com. “It’s a good way to evaluate where your program is at; you know what your team is capable of when he’s in your car. He’s so good at picking apart what his car needs, what it can do, what it can’t do and relay that information so you can make more effective changes.”
Most believe Busch and Stevens are the best driver-crew chief combination in the series.
What Lies Ahead for Kyle Busch
Busch has won at least one race a year every season since the 2005 campaign. He tied his career high last year with eight victories, matching his 2008 total.
Busch has won at least one race on every track currently on the Cup schedule with the except the Charlotte Motor Speedway “Roval,” a hybrid oval-track/road course layout that made its debut last year. Busch has won a total 48 races at the tracks remaining on this year’s schedule.