Friday, July 1, 2022

Kurt Busch Defeats Kyle Larson in Intense Battle for Kansas Victory


PC: Toyota Racing | Twitter

Before Sunday’s Advent Health 400 at Kansas, it had been a pretty dismal season for Kurt Busch and 23XI Racing, sitting 21st in NASCAR Cup Series point standings, despite showing reasonable speed.

However, in the team’s first race with co-owner Michael Jordan’s Jordan Brand on the car, Busch summoned that ‘Michael Jordan Magic’ to capture the second victory for 23XI Racing at NASCAR’s top-level.

In what can only be described as a career-day for the second-year organization, Busch led a race-high 116 laps around the 1.5-mile facility, surpassing the team’s total number of laps led throughout its prior 60 NASCAR Cup Series starts.

The Las Vegas, Nevada-native dominated the second half of Sunday’s event, taking the lead for the first time on Lap 113, when William Byron’s left-rear tire went flat from the lead. From there, Busch led 116 of the race’s final 154 laps.

With that being said, it wasn’t an easy victory either, as a slower pit stop for the No. 45 team put them behind both Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson off of pit road, on a restart with 32 laps to go.

Busch would stay patient, making the final pass for the lead on Kyle Larson inside the race’s final 10 laps, after battling side-by-side with the defending series champion for multiple laps, squeezing the No. 5 up the track and into the outside wall.

From there it was smooth sailing, as Busch captured the victory by 1.413 seconds over the Hendrick Motorsports driver. Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Christopher Bell, and Martin Truex Jr. followed in succession, rounding out the top six.

Ross Chastain, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Alex Bowman, and Bubba Wallace scored top-10 finishes when the dust settled at Kansas Speedway.

At the halfway point in the regular season, Chase Elliott – despite a poor finish of 29th at Kansas — continues to hold a 52-point advantage over Ryan Blaney in the series point standings. Kyle Busch, William Byron, and Ross Chastain round out the top-five in points.

The NASCAR Cup Series will have a week off from points-paying activities as the series heads to Texas Motor Speedway for the NASCAR All-Star Race.

Joseph Srigley
Joseph Srigley
University of Windsor | Business Administration - Supply Chain & Data Analytics Editor at

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