News & Multimedia

Kurt Busch Fights His Way For Martinsville Win

On Sunday at historic Martinsville Speedway, the driver known as "The Outlaw" committed highway robbery.

Bullying his way past six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson with 10 laps left in Sunday’s STP 500 at the .526-mile short track, Kurt Busch held on to edge Johnson by 0.263 seconds, denying Johnson a ninth Martinsville victory.

A Martinsville winner in 2002, Busch added a second victory at Sprint Cup’s oldest current venue to his resume. Busch’s 25th career victory was his first triumph in the No. 41 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet and the first victory as a Sprint Cup crew chief for Daniel Knost.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished third in a race that produce a record 33 lead changes and a sixth consecutive different winner to open the 2014 season. Joey Logano ran fourth, followed by Marcos Ambrose and Matt Kenseth.

Kevin Harvick, Aric Almirola, Clint Bowyer and Paul Menard completed the top 10.

Busch stole the victory from Johnson, despite an earlier collision with Brad Keselowski’s Ford that cost Keselowski 31 laps.

"We’re done," Busch said tersely after running into the back of the No. 2 Team Penkse Ford, a car Busch drove for much of his career, to date.

That was far from the truth. Busch worked his way back into contention and restarted third on Lap 466 after caution for Carl Edwards spin in Turn 2. On Lap 473, he got the nose of his car under Johnson’s No. 48 Chevy and grabbed the lead.

Ten laps later, Johnson — who led 296 of the 500 laps — regained the top spot with a slight nudge to Busch’s bumper, but Johnson fought a loose handling condition the rest of the way and couldn’t keep the Stewart-Haas Chevy behind him.

Busch, like Johnson, was driving a Hendrick Motorsports chassis powered by a Hendrick engine.

"I didn’t know if we’d be able to do it," Busch said. "The 48 car is king here, him and the 24 (Jeff Gordon, who also has eight Martinsville wins). This is the old theory ‘If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.’ I had a Hendrick chassis prepared by Stewart-Haas Racing, a Hendrick motor. So thanks to those guys and Chevrolet.

"I’ve been on this journey for a while, and every time you come to Martinsville, you kind of draw a line, like ‘There’s no way I’ll be able to challenge those Hendrick guys or be up in the top 10.' These Stewart-Haas guys gave me a car to do it."

Johnson, who has been having uncharacteristic difficulty closing out races of late, did everything possible to keep Busch at bay.

"That’s all I had," Johnson said. "I ran the rear tires off the car. I flipped every switch and knob I could to get front brake and turn fans off to try to help bring the balance back. But it was still too loose  to get the win."

Story courtesy of

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Kurt Busch Fights His Way For Martinsville Win
Kurt Busch Fights His Way For Martinsville Win
Bullying his way past six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson with 10 laps left in Sunday’s STP 500 at the .526-mile short track, Kurt Busch held on to edge Johnson by 0.263 seconds, denying Johnson a ninth Martinsville victory.
Read More
Related Media
Kyle Busch
Monday Racing Roundup: Kyle Busch Wins NASCAR Sprint Cup Title at Homestead
Finishing off one of the most remarkable comebacks in NASCAR history—indeed, in the annals of sport—Kyle Busch won Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway and, with it, his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship.
Read More
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Monday Racing Roundup: Championship Foursome Set
A serendipitous sequence of pit stops and a drizzle that turned into a downpour made a winner of Dale Earnhardt Jr. in Sunday night’s Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, the start of which was delayed from day to night by rain in the afternoon.
Read More
Hulman Terrace Club
New Hulman Terrace Club Offers Premium Seating for IMS Events
The Hulman Terrace Club, located on the outside of the front straightaway of the famed 2.5-mile oval past the exit of Turn 4, will feature more than 1,000 seats plus ADA-accessible seating for fans seeking a club option similar to what is offered at many other major U.S. stadiums. It’s the first new seating option at IMS in more than a decade and a key piece of the ongoing Project 100 initiative. Pre-sale registration is available here with tickets officially going on sale Dec. 1.
Read More
Jimmie Johnson
Monday Racing Roundup: Johnson Completes Texas Sweep
On Sunday, the six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion completed a sweep of this year’s Texas Motor Speedway races, powering past hapless Brad Keselowski with three laps left to win the AAA Texas 500 for the fourth straight year.
Read More
Jeff Gordon
Monday Racing Roundup: Gordon Punches Ticket for Chase Finale
Long before Gordon held off Jamie McMurray in a two-lap run to the finish as darkness consumed the .526-mile short track, Kenseth ended polesitter Joey Logano’s remarkable run in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup by pile-driving Logano’s No. 22 Team Penske Ford, which was leading the race at the time, into the Turn 1 wall on Lap 454 of 500.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 664
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact Laura Wyamn at (317) 492-8557 or email at
Latest Tweets
Don't forget, new episode of “I Love @KelliePickler” on @CMT featuring Austin Dillon will air at 10 p.m. ET this Thursday!
about 12 hours ago