LONG POND, Pa. (June 9, 2013) – Kurt Busch came back from a pit road glitch to post a solid seventh-place finish in Sunday’s Party at the Poconos 400 Sprint Cup Series race.
It was the fifth top-10 of the season for Busch, who gained two spots in the driver point standings – from 17th to 15th. He is only 21 points out of 10th with 12 races remaining before the Chase begins.
Since taking over the Furniture Row Racing ride with six races remaining in 2012, Busch has recorded eight top-10 finishes in 20 races – three last year and five in the first 14 races of 2013. It’s the same number of career top-10s that Furniture Racing claimed in 193 starts before Busch joined the single-car team out of Denver, Colo.
Busch started the 160-lap, 400-mile race at Pocono Raceway from the 20th position (qualifying was rained out and the field was set by owner points). Before the race was 15-laps-old his No. 78 Furniture Row Chevrolet was already running in the top-10, and when the caution came out on Lap 126 Busch was positioned in fifth place.
The pit stop following the Lap 126 caution was temporarily costly for Busch. He overshot the pit box, resulting in a lengthy stop, which eventually relegated him to 24th place.
But the former NASCAR champion showed his true driving talent again by storming through the field to notch his 13thcareer top-10 at the 2.5-mile triangular track.
“We had a fast car again, ran up front but a mistake on my part on pit road stalled our momentum,” explained Busch. “But we battled back with a solid finish. To win you have to be perfect out there and we weren’t today. But the good news is that we know how to overcome adversity and the more we perform the way we have been the better we’ll get. We’ve made great strides in the past month and need to continue the progression. I don’t see any reason why we can’t.”
Busch and his Furniture Row Racing teammates will take their momentum to Michigan International Speedway Sunday (June 16) for the running of the Quicken Loans 400.
The Pocono race winner was Jimmie Johnson. Rounding out the top-10 in order were Greg Biffle, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart, Ryan Newman, Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick and Joey Logano.
There were 12 lead changes among four drivers and six cautions for 19 laps.