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SHR Crew Chief Swap Pays Off for Kurt Busch in Texas

SHR Crew Chief Swap Pays Off for Kurt Busch in Texas

by November 2, 2014 0 comments

Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images

FORT WORTH, Texas. — Kurt Busch’s first race with new crew chief Tony Gibson proved to be successful on Sunday night in the AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway with the new pairing coming home with an eighth-place finish.

Busch scored his 10th top-10 finish of the year in a competitive run that featured the driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet spend 15 laps of the race in the lead.

The 2004 Sprint Cup Series champion ran in the top-five late in the race, but pitted from his top-five position during the second-to-last caution on Lap 332 as most of the top-five chose to stay out to keep their track position.

After one lap of green during the first of two green-white-checkered finishes, Busch was able to slice his way to just outside of the top-10 from the 25th position. On the final green-white-checkered restart, Busch punched his way into the top-10 during the two-lap frenzy to come home with his eighth-place result.

“It was great to have a shot at the win. Tony Gibson, the engineers did a great job reading my balance, and I was trying to pick up on their changes. So, it was nice to go out there and execute. We just lost too many spots on pit road, and that put us behind a few times.

“The strategy was to stay out, and we didn’t need all those yellows. All those yellows gave everybody with fresh tires a chance to catch me. We used the last yellow to our advantage. The last two yellows for fresh tires, and worked our way from, I don’t know, 25th to eighth. All-in-all, a great first day.”

With one race down with his new team, Busch already feels that he and his new team (Busch also received a new road crew from Stewart-Haas Racing’s No. 10 team along with Gibson) are gelling fine and predicts that they will become even better as a unit.

“I love the team; I love the guys. We are going to be good,” Busch affirms. “We just have to work out the details.”

Busch’s former crew chief, Daniel Knost, and his former road crew went over to Danica Patrick’s No. 10 Go Daddy team in the swap by SHR. Patrick and her new No. 10 crew 36th in the AAA Texas 500 – nine laps off of the lead.

The No. 41 Haas Automation team head to Phoenix International Raceway next for the Quicken Loans Race Heroes 500. Busch finished 39th at Phoenix in February after his engine expired with 20 laps remaining in the The Profit on CNBC 500.

Kyle Pokrefky
Follow Kyle Pokrefky on Twitter at @KPokrefky

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