NASCAR

Kurt Busch has done wonders for team

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Jeff Hammond

Jeff Hammond is a former NASCAR crew chief who led Darrell Waltrip to two of his three Sprint Cup championships. The duo also teamed up to win the 1989 Daytona 500. Prior to that, Hammond was the jackman for Cale Yarborough for all three of his Cup championships. He has 43 Sprint Cup wins as a crew chief. Follow him on Twitter.

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With the NASCAR Silly Season already in full swing with the changes we’ve known about and now the new ones that have come to light, one that’s really interesting is the possible addition of a fourth team at Stewart-Haas Racing with Kurt Busch as the driver.

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I’ve known Kurt for a long time. In fact, when I was crew chief for Jack Roush at the end of my career, he put me with this rookie named Kurt Busch. We all know Kurt’s rap from the past. He’s eccentric, volcanic; he’s been described every which way.

What can’t be ignored or swept under the mat is that Kurt Busch is a former NASCAR Sprint Cup champion and is a winning race car driver. On top of all that and even more important, he can drive the wheels off a race car.

That is something no one can ever doubt. Look what he’s done this year with the Furniture Row group. He literally has put them on the map. Don’t get me wrong; they are a great group of folks over there at the No. 78, but for the first time, they have a driver they can take full advantage of, and it’s been a win-win scenario for both sides.

IT ADDS UP

Where did your favorite driver finish in the 2013 final standings?

If they can just tweak their program a little bit in these next three races, they can find themselves in the 2013 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Folks, that is NO easy feat for a single-car operation that literally is based in Colorado. They are fortunate to have a really strong alliance with Richard Childress Racing, so you can’t discount that, but where this organization was before Kurt and where they are with Kurt is light-years apart. To me, it’s the “WOW” of our 2013 season.

If they can make the Chase, it would be one for the record books. It really reminds me of back in 1992 when Alan Kulwicki came out of nowhere as an owner/driver and shocked the world by winning the championship. It’s a team and driver that wasn’t supposed to succeed, but did. Sadly, as we know, Alan didn’t get to enjoy his championship all that long because he died in a plane crash on his way to the Bristol race that following spring.

If all the talk is true about the Stewart-Haas opportunity or the possible Richard Childress Racing opportunity for Kurt, should he leave this No. 78 car?

Honestly, that’s not for me or anyone else to decide. Only Kurt Busch can weigh everything out and make the best possible decision for his future.
 

Tagged: Kurt Busch

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