NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series Overview
Event: Atlanta 200 (Race 2 of 23), 130 Laps – 40/40/50; 200.2 Miles
Location: Atlanta (Ga.) Motor Speedway (1.5-mile quad-oval)
Date/Broadcast: Feb. 23, 2019 at 4:30 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1, MRN and Sirius/XM NASCAR 90
What You Need to Know
- Owner-driver Kyle Busch is scheduled to make five NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series starts in the No. 51 for KBM in 2019 including Atlanta (Ga.) Motor Speedway, Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway, Martinsville (Va.) Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, and Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.
- Busch has won four times in 10 NGOTS starts at Atlanta Motor Speedway and has collected seven top-five and eight top-10 finishes. He has an average start of 3.0 and an average finish of 6.6 and has led 387 laps.
- Billy Ballew Motorsports, a car dealership in Dawsonville, Ga., will be an associate sponsor on the No. 51. Busch earned all four wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway while driving for the NGOTS team owned by Georgia businessman Billy Ballew. In addition, Busch won his first race in the No. 51 truck and coined the nickname “Rowdy” as a tribute to Rowdy Burns in the film Days of Thunder while driving under the Billy Ballew Motorsports banner.
- Veteran crew chief Rudy Fugle will lead the 51 team this season. Fugle has guided his team to four Owner’s Championships (2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017) as a crew chief at KBM, including combined Owner’s/Driver’s Championships with Erik Jones in 2015 and Christopher Bell in 2017. The New York native’s drivers have combined for 22 wins, 20 poles, 57 top-five and 71 top-10 finishes across his 114 races calling the shots for the organization. Working with Fugle in 2013, Busch collected five wins, eight top-five and nine top-10 finishes across 11 Truck Series starts.
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Kyle Busch, Driver Q&A
Are you looking forward to your first Truck Series start of 2019?
“I’m looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the Cessna Tundra for the first time in 2019. We had a really fast truck in last year’s race, but an untimely caution and miscue on the last pit stop kept us from getting to victory lane. Saturday’s going to be a bit of a reunion race for me as I’ll have Rudy (Fugle, crew chief) as my crew chief for a Truck Series race for the first time since 2013 when we won five races together. We’ll also have Billy Ballew’s car dealership that’s located in Dawsonville onboard as an associate sponsor for this race. I won four times in Billy’s truck at Atlanta when I drove for him, so hopefully he’ll be a good luck charm. If we are able to get to victory lane this week and break the wins record it’ll be cool to have Billy be a part of it since he was the owner for my first 16 truck wins before I started KBM.”
Kyle Busch Career Highlights
- Busch has a total of 145 NGOTS starts and is tied for first in NGOTS wins (51 Ron Hornaday), second in laps led (6,406) and fourth in poles (21). Busch has a total of 93 top-five and 114 top-10 finishes with an average start of 7.3 and an average finish of 7.0.
- The 33-year-old driver has won 35.17% (51/145) of the NGOTS races he has entered and finished first or second in 53.1% (77/145).
- Las Vegas-native, Busch, has 194 all-time combined NASCAR national series wins which ranks second all-time (Richard Petty 200).
- In August of 2010, Busch made history when he won the NGOTS, NASCAR XFINITY Series and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races at Bristol Motor Speedway, becoming the only driver to sweep all three of NASCAR’s top three series at one track on the same weekend. He then repeated the feat in August of 2017.
Kyle Busch No. 51 Cessna Tundra:
KBM-055: The No. 51 Cessna team will race KBM-055 for Saturday’s Atlanta 200 at Atlanta (Ga.) Motor Speedway. This chassis was raced once before by Noah Gragson in the season finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway in 2018. He started and finished the race in the third position, leading 34 laps.
KBM Notes of Interest
- KBM drivers have collected one win, two poles (Christopher Bell 2017, Kyle Busch 2018), six top-five and seven top-10 finishes at Atlanta Motor Speedway. They have earned a collective average start of 5.6 and average finish of 13.8 and have led 418 laps.
- KBM drivers have combined to lead 88.6% (234/264) of the laps in the last two Truck Series events at Atlanta. Christopher Bell became the first driver under NASCAR’s new format to sweep all three stages of a race after leading 99 of 130 laps en route to victory from the pole in 2017. Busch also led 25 laps in that race. Last year, Busch led a race-high 67 laps and was leading when a caution came out with five laps to go. A miscue on the final pit stop relegated KBM’s owner-driver to a 21st-place finish. Noah Gragson led the first 43 laps and finished second.
- Last season the No. 51 team claimed two wins, both with owner-driver Kyle Busch, and is the winningest number in the KBM stable with 24 trips to victory lane in Truck Series action
- KBM holds the NCWTS records for most career wins (68) and most wins in a single season (14 in 2014). In addition to collecting a series-record six Owner’s Championships, the organization has produced two championship-winning drivers; Erik Jones (2015) and Christopher Bell (2017).