Although the NASCAR season is over, Kurt Busch still will be the busiest driver in NASCAR the next couple weeks with his participation in two entirely diverse offseason events.
Busch will race this weekend in the NASA 25 Hours of Thunderhill, which offers a cornucopia of diverse, random machinery, and drivers in North America’s longest endurance race.
He’ll share the No. 61 BF Goodrich Road Shagger Racing BMW M3 with co-drivers Gavin Ernstone, Jon Morley and Robbie Montinola.
Busch has some endurance race experience; he has two starts in the Rolex 24 at Daytona in 2005 and 2008. But while that’s the formal kickoff to the season, this is a much more low-key experience.
Thunderhill occurs this weekend, with all NASCAR Sprint Cup championship celebrations in Busch’s hometown of Las Vegas occurring this week.
After Thunderhill, Busch will head to Barbados for his maiden voyage to the Race of Champions. He was announced at the same time as Williams F1 test driver Susie Wolff.
The Barbados event will see Busch, the 2014 Indianapolis 500 rookie-of-the-year, team once again with his month of May teammate at Andretti Autosport, Ryan Hunter-Reay, as the two American participants.
Busch was just in Monza over the weekend for a rally event.
While the last month has seen Busch in the news for reasons no one wants to see – an investigation has been launched into an alleged domestic assault against ex-girlfriend Patricia Driscoll – it will be better to see Busch in the news for what he’s best at, and that’s wheeling seemingly anything and everything he can get his hands on.
A hearing in that case will be held December 16.
ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).
“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.
“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”
For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.
“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.
“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”
Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.
“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.