Kurt Busch previews Pocono 400, talks odds, rivalries and racing against brother Kyle
Here's what the former Cup Series champ had to say ahead of the race at the Tricky Triangle
The NASCAR Cup series heads to Pocono Raceway this weekend as drivers look to punch their ticket to the playoffs with a win. One driver looking to do so is three-time Tricky Triangle winner Kurt Busch, who enters the race eighth in the standings.
We caught up with Busch ahead of the race to discuss his expectations for the No. 1 team. Busch also took the time to reflect on recent changes to the NASCAR rulebook as well as what it's been like to race against his brother Kyle Busch, who happens to be the favorite on Sunday at 3-to-1.
You can listen to the full interview -- in which Busch discusses his own 20-to-1 odds -- below.
Here some of the highlights of what Busch said.
EXPECTATIONS FOR WEEKEND AT POCONO
"Expectations are winning. There's the three wins that I have from before but it's like in any sport, what have you done lately. So we've got to get our Monster Energy Chevy in Victory Lane this weekend at Pocono."
"This weekend will be a huge difference and newness with the new package that NASCAR has. We'll have tons of downforce, tons of drag and the cars are really creating a lot of wake and turbulent air. So it's really magnified the draft this year and so with the straightaways at Pocono being so long, there's going to be huge amount of pull-ups and the way that the cars will draft with each other. You're going to have to either check up or aggressively pass that guy ahead of the draft. So this weekend is going to be a pretty big difference than what we've had in years past."
ADAPTING TO CHANGES IN NASCAR AS WELL AS SUGGESTED MOVES
"There is the veteran advantage on just being able to deal with change and to cope with it but also you have to set that aside and go back to your younger years when there's something so new and different, you've got to adapt to it. It reminds me a lot of when I was first starting out…That there was this rule change and you have to work with it and perfect it and master it quicker than the other guys. So that's what's been going on this year. You're seeing the veterans still clipping off the wins but it's up to us to make sure that we're learning quicker and applying it faster than some of the new guys."
WHAT IT'S LIKE TO RACE AGAINST BROTHER KYLE BUSCH AND WEAR THE BUSCH NAME
"Man his odds are pretty good (3-1), I would take Kurt Busch though at 20-to-1 I mean that's a good bet. Racing against my brother it's fun but it's also a challenge. We definitely have the brother connection to know what each other thinks out on the racetrack at the same time. It's not like we're going to outfox each other. There are those awkward moments of when somebody is coming down the hallway the same side that somebody else is coming down the hallway and you kinda both move the same way, yeah we do that on the track here or there but man he's the first guy I want to make sure I beat. He's the first guy I want to make sure I finish in front of even if I'm running 18th, I want to make sure he's 19th. That's just the brotherly love!"
KURT BUSCH'S BIGGEST RIVAL OTHER THAN HIS BROTHER
"You always want to beat the who's who and right now Kyle -- my little brother -- is at the top of his game. Brad Keselowski is one of the fastest Fords. Him and Joey Logano at Penske Racing I would call out as my rivals who I want to beat each week. Martin Truex Jr. won last week, he's hot. You've got to go after the top dog and I want people picking me as their rival they want to beat."
WHAT IS WAS LIKE TO RACE FOR AND AGAINST FORMER RIVAL TONY STEWART
"Tony Stewart is just like myself, coming up from nothing and having to race anything he can get his hands on to make his name. Then to go and race for Tony Stewart, it was like a long lost brother. We knew each other right away because of the same upbringing of how we got to the top. To race and to win for him was fabulous. We won the Daytona 500 together. That brotherhood and that friendship meant a lot for the time that I spent with Tony Stewart and now he's a Hall of Famer. It's pretty neat to see it all come full circle for him."
Here's a complete rundown of all the races on tap for this year's NASCAR Cup Series
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