Days of Thunder II: Kurt Busch to channel his inner Cole Trickle at Daytona

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There are things that are cool in racing – and then there are things that are waaaaayyyy cool.

Kurt Busch will definitely be part of the latter category in Friday’s Subway Firecracker 250 Nationwide Series race at Daytona International Speedway.

In a special one-off ride for team owner Rick Hendrick, the elder Busch brother will drive a Chevrolet Camaro with a day-glo yellow and lime green paint scheme and City Chevrolet sponsorship identical to one that Tom Cruise drove in the seminal movie, Days Of Thunder.

(Speaking of which, can you believe it’s been 23 years since DoT first hit the big screen? Now, doesn’t that make you feel old?)

“I can’t wait to get out there, drop the hammer and maybe do a little rubbin’,” Busch told FoxSports.com.

Or, as Robert Duvall (crew chief Harry Hogge) says in the movie, “Rubbin’s racin’.”

Busch is the defending winner of Friday’s NNS race.

To add a bit more spice, Busch, Hendrick and crew chief Nick Harrison acted out a couple of scenes in the movie that were caught on video.

And we use the word “acted” VERY loosely.

Let’s just put it this way: if you have visions of Hollywood stardom, guys, don’t give up your day jobs any time soon.

But in the whole big scheme of things, this is one of the best promotions we’ve seen in a long time, and it’s for a good cause: to raise awareness for the “Help Save Our Troops” campaign by the Armed Forces Foundation.

We can hear Busch now on the team radio: “I’m droppin’ the hammer.”

And we won’t be surprised to hear Harrison do his best Hogge imitation by replying back, “Now Kurt, when that little needle on the tach goes into the red and reads ‘9,000 RPM,’ that’s bad.'”

Or, if Busch has a bad night, maybe he and Harrison can reenact another famous scene from the movie:

Harrison: All right. While we’re still under a caution, I want you to go back out on that track and hit the pace car.

Busch: Hit the pace car?

Harrison: Hit the pace car.

Busch: What for?

Harrison: Because you’ve hit every other god—— thing out there, I want you to be perfect.

Al Unser Jr. to race Pikes Peak Hill Climb for first time in 29 years

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Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser Jr. is coming out of retirement to race again.

Unser Jr., who turns 56 on April 19, will compete in the 96th Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on June 24. It will be the first time Unser has raced at Pikes Peak in 29 years, since the 1989 event.

Unser won the Hill Climb and was named “King of the Mountain” in the 1983 event.

Unser said in 2007 that he was retiring from racing and had no plans to race in the future. However, he has taken part since then in some selected vintage racing events.

Speaking of vintage cars, Unser is slated to drive a 1936 Chevrolet Sedan in this year’s Hill Climb, according to race organizers.

He’ll compete with a number of luminaries including eight-time Hill Climb winner Paul Dallenbach; Layne Schranz, who will be competing in his 25th “Race to the Clouds”; 23-time champion Clint Vahsholtz; 25-time Hill Climb competitor David Schmidt II and three-time Climb winner Spencer Steele.

Unser recently returned to IndyCar racing as a consultant with Harding Racing, which is beginning its first full season in the series with Gabby Chaves behind the wheel.