The NASCAR Xfinity Series headed to Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday, July 10, for one of the few remaining regular-season races. Kyle Busch climbed into the No. 54 for what will likely be his final start in the Xfinity series. The veteran closed out his time in style with the win, his fifth in five starts.
Busch captured the checkered flag, but he expressed unhappiness about how he did so during his post-race interview. Teammate Daniel Hemric had the best car on the track and appeared to be en route to his first career win. However, Busch hit the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry from behind while trying to provide a push, sending Hemric into the wall and causing considerable damage.
“I meant to push him. I wanted to hit him. I just wanted to hit him forward and straight, but I turned him sideways a little bit,” Busch said to NBC Sports reporter Marty Snider. “And then I think he got a little bit more help on his right side. Just trying to help a teammate, and that’s why I restarted behind him. Overall, a great day for our 54 car, but the 18 was better.” Busch added that Hemric “deserved the win” before apologizing to his teammate.
Busch Addressed His Future Plans for the Xfinity Series
With Busch capturing his fifth win of the season and reaching 102 in his Xfinity Series career, he faced questions about his future plans. Specifically, will he stop competing in the Xfinity Series now that he has topped 100 wins in 362 starts?
Busch answered these questions by saying that “as far as I know,” he will not make any more starts in the Xfinity Series for Joe Gibbs Racing or any other team. Though he said “never say never” about his future prospects. Busch has said in the past that he could potentially get behind the wheel of an Xfinity Series car if absolutely necessary, and he left the door open for that possibility.
If Busch is truly done as an Xfinity Series driver, he ends his career in a memorable style. He only made five starts in the series during the 2021 season, and he reached Victory Lane every single time. Busch won races at Circuit of the Americas, Texas Motor Speedway, Nashville Superspeedway, Road America, and Atlanta Motor Speedway. He had never raced at two of these tracks but still captured the wins.
Busch Will Likely Continue to Compete in Multiple Series
While Busch will no longer compete in the Xfinity Series, barring any unforeseen circumstances, he should continue to suit up for another series. He is the owner of Kyle Busch Motorsports, which fields three Camping World Truck Series teams.
John Hunter Nemechek drives the No. 4 KBM Toyota Tundra full-time while Chandler Smith controls the No. 18 Toyota Tundra. The No. 51 features a rotating cast of drivers throughout the season, which includes Drew Dollar, Corey Heim, Martin Truex Jr., and Parker Chase among others. Busch also makes five starts a year in the No. 51.
The driver-owner suited up for races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Atlanta Motor Speedway (win), Richmond Raceway, Kansas Speedway (win), and Pocono Raceway. He reached Victory Lane twice during the 2021 season and finished second in the three other races. He can’t make any more starts in the Truck Series due to NASCAR rules, but Busch will be eligible to return to the No. 51 during the 2022 season if he so desires.