At one point in his career, Kyle Busch would run at least two races on any given weekend on a regular basis. While those weekends have slowed a bit in frequency in recent years, the two-time Cup Series champion will dip his toes in the water five times a year to compete in both the NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series on the same weekend.
The Cup and Xfinity Series head to Austin, Texas, this weekend to compete on the 3.426-mile, 20-turn road course at Circuit of Americas (COTA) for the first time ever. And Busch, driver of the No. 18 M&M’S MIX Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) in Sunday’s Cup Series EchoPark Texas Grand Prix, will also be taking part in Saturday’s Xfinity Series race behind the wheel of the No. 54 SKITTLES Gummies Supra.
While this is the first time NASCAR is competing at COTA, the circuit has hosted various other racing events that include the yearly stop for Formula One in America since 2012, as well as IndyCar, Moto GP, sportscars and many others.
Busch as shown a propensity for road-course racing during his Cup Series career, and with a record seven road-course circuits on the schedule this year, he may have a chance to move himself up on the list of NASCAR road-course race winners. If Busch could win this weekend, he could also join some elite company as a road-racing ace in NASCAR’s top series. The M&M’S MIX driver’s four road-course wins tie him with NASCAR Hall of Famers David Pearson and Mark Martin on the all-time Cup Series road-course wins list. That’s some pretty good company, already. But with a fifth road-course win, Busch could tie Darrell Waltrip, Tim Richmond, Dan Gurney, and young star Chase Elliott on the list at five. There is a bit of distance to the top two spots on the all-time road-course wins list, of course, when it comes to catching Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart, who have nine and eight career road-course wins, respectively.
Road-course racing has taken on even more importance in the Cup Series this year with the addition of COTA, Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, the road courses at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway added to the traditional stops at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway, Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International and the Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway Roval. With those additions in mind, it’s more important than ever to have a strong driver and team that can turn left and right this season and beyond.
Busch will once again pilot the M&M’S MIX scheme that went to victory lane at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City in its first appearance this season earlier this month. M&M’S MIX combines three different flavors of M&M’S in one bag. There are two different types: Classic Mix, which features Milk Chocolate, Peanut and Peanut Butter, and the Peanut MIX, which combines Milk Chocolate Peanut, Dark Chocolate Peanut and White Chocolate Peanut. Race fans can pick up M&M’S MIX at local retailers across the country.
So, as Busch and his M&M’S MIX team head down to Texas’s capital city, they know they’ll have a challenge ahead of them at COTA this weekend, but the Las Vegas native is hoping to do the “Texas Two-Step” on Saturday and Sunday with a shot at not one but a pair of victories.