No, Kurt Busch isn't making the full-time switch from NASCAR to the NHRA, but the 2004 Sprint Cup champion just got his NHRA Pro Stock license and is going to attempt the NHRA race at Gainesville, FL in March.
“If we're ready,” noted Busch, “We plan on renting a car from Allen Johnson, with the blessing of Mopar, and attempt to make the field in Gainesville.”
There was no mistaking the words, “if we're ready” as Busch revealed plans which previously have been kept close to the vest. “There is a big difference between 7.5 seconds and what you need to run to be make a Pro Stock field,” admitted Busch, who has advanced quickly in his drag racing endeavors.
“This isn't as easy as I thought it would be,” admitted the past Sprint Cup Series champion, who also owns and has run a Dodge in the Street Stock division. “But, we're getting there and the past three days haven't been all about me learning the race car. This has been about my crew learning what it takes to prepare one of these cars to race.”
Seriously, how cool is this? Sure, NHRA drivers -- and cone murderers -- have joined the big boys of the Cup Series at Tony Stewart's Prelude to the Dream over the last few years, but now a Cup driver is going to compete in the drag racing game on the drag racers' turf. It's a win-win for all involved.
The NHRA will get some great exposure in March -- because honestly, can anyone name more than four or five Pro Stock drivers? -- and could gain some credibility if Busch's transition is difficult. Plus, it harkens back to the days when drivers regularly hopped between different racing disciplines and if Busch has a ton of fun, he may inspire more Cup drivers to give drag racing a try.