Kyle Busch set for Las Vegas
Kyle Busch started from the pole position in the Shelby 427 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway last year, and he managed to take the checkered flag in that race.
Can he duplicate that win on Sunday? This year’s Las Vegas event has been renamed the Shelby American, and Busch finds himself back in 13th place in the driver standings heading into the weekend. after a middling start to the season.
Still, he’s been listed at +700 odds at to visit victory lane. That put him behind only Cup Series stalwarts Jimmie Johnson and Mark Martin on the odds list. Martin has won once at Las Vegas, but that was way back in 1998 at the Las Vegas 400.
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Johnson, though, has had more recent success on the track – he won the UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in each of 2005, 2006, and 2007. Johnson is also carrying some momentum from his win last week at Auto Club into Sunday’s race.
However, Johnson certainly won’t be looking to last year’s result at Las Vegas for inspiration on Sunday – he wound up in 24th place in the race won by Busch. Clint Bowyer, Jeff Burton, David Reutimann, Bobby Labonte, Jeff Gordon, Greg Biffle, Brian Vickers, Jamie McMurray, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. followed Busch across the finish line on that day. Martin had engine trouble and ended up 40th.
And Matt Kenseth, a two-time Las Vegas winner, finished dead last in 43rd place in last season’s race after he also experienced engine trouble.
Kenseth won at the track in both 2003 and 2004. The only other active drivers with Cup wins in the short history of Las Vegas Motor Speedway are Gordon (2001), Burton (1999 and 2000), and Carl Edwards (2008). Edwards disappointed in the race in 2009, ending up in 17th place. Race time for the Shelby American is set for 3:00pm ET on Sunday on FOX.