Kurt Busch will set a significant personal milestone this Sunday at Dover International Speedway, as he makes his 500th career Sprint Cup start.
And in an ironic twist, Busch will reach that milestone at the very same track where he made his first career Sprint Cup start back in 2000. He qualified 10th for that race and ultimately finished 18th.
That’s a far cry from where Busch is heading into Dover this weekend. Currently ranked 15th in the 16-driver Chase for the Sprint Cup standings, Busch is in a must-win situation if he hopes to be one of four drivers who avoids elimination from continuing in the Chase after Sunday’s race.
Hard as it may seem to believe – where has the time gone – but Busch is now in his 15th Sprint Cup season, starting with an abbreviated seven-race stint in 2000 for Roush Racing before moving to full-time status the following season.
Busch, who turned 36 last month (August 4), has 25 career Sprint Cup wins, including being the first championship winner of the Chase for the Nextel Cup (now Sprint Cup) in 2004.
Busch also has 106 top-five and 198 top-10 finishes in his 499 starts to date, as well as has earned 16 poles.
Busch was quite the prolific race winner earlier in his career, capturing 14 victories from 2002 through 2005.
But since then, Busch has managed just 11 wins since the start of the 2006 season, a span of nearly nine seasons. His win earlier this year at Martinsville was his first since two victories in 2011.
To mark Busch’s accomplishment, his Haas Automation Chevy will have a special brushed-metal paint scheme at Dover.
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