There have been few things that have not changed dramatically in NASCAR’s top series over the past 30 years. However, one thing that has been a model of consistency since 1992 has been the partnership between Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) and founding sponsor Interstate Batteries.
It’s that consistency that has helped propel JGR to five NASCAR Cup Series championships and 191 race wins – and counting – as one of NASCAR’s top teams celebrates its 30th anniversary throughout the 2021 season.
The longstanding Interstate Batteries partnership continues today with a driver and team who have been models of consistency on the racetrack during the late spring and summer each year. So, it’s only appropriate that Kyle Busch will strap back into his green lightning scheme this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon as he competes in the third of six races with JGR founding sponsor Interstate Batteries’ Toyota Camry.
Busch, driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota for JGR, heads into Sunday’s Foxwoods Casino Resort 301 looking to continue his hot streak over the last 11 weeks with hopes adding yet another notch to the win column at a place he enjoys.
Busch has posted four consecutive top-three finishes, most recently a strong runner-up finish this past weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway. In fact, Busch has posted six top-five finishes in his last eight races, including his second win of the season in June at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway. Starting with his first win of the season on his birthday, May 2, at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Busch has only two finishes outside the top-10, and nine top-10 finishes during that time.
The New Hampshire track, affectionately dubbed the “Magic Mile,” has certainly lived up to its billing for Busch. In 2015, he and his team used hard work and a little bit of luck to bring home what would be his second of three Cup Series wins in a row during a summer hot streak that would ultimately springboard him to that year’s Cup Series championship.
The 2015 New Hampshire victory was Busch’s second Cup Series win on the flat, 1.058-mile oval, the first coming in just his third start there in July 2006, and in dominating fashion as he led 107 laps. After that 2006 win, the Las Vegas native left with plenty of confidence that he could get multiple New Hampshire wins as his career progressed. As it turned out, he was winless there over the next 17 races, which included a number of near-misses.
Still, the driver of the Interstate Batteries Toyota posted five top-five finishes in those 17 starts between New Hampshire wins, including three runner-up finishes in a row in 2013 and 2014 before breaking through for the aforementioned 2015 win. He added his first playoff victory at the track in September 2017 after leading 187 of the 300 laps in an impressive performance. In all, Busch has 11 top-five finishes and 16 top-10s in 29 starts at New Hampshire.
Now in the dog days of summer, this part of the season happens to be the hottest for Cup Series competitors with many race venues seeing higher July temperatures, which is also the case for race fans heading out on their vacation road trips. The summer months can be taxing on both man and machine, whether it’s on the highway or at the track. Caring for the latter is one of the ways JGR founding partner Interstate Batteries leverages its NASCAR program, reminding consumers to have their batteries checked during the hot summer months at a local dealer prior to their summer road trips. Typically, Busch and his team elevate their game even more during the grueling summer stretch thanks to Interstate Batteries.
So, as NASCAR’s top series heads to the Northeast for Sunday’s 301-mile race, Busch will bring back the familiar – and consistent – colors of Interstate Batteries, aiming for yet another victory together.