3.14.14 (via SportingNews.com) – Kurt Busch, the first driver in 10 years to attempt the Memorial Day double of running both major auto races on the same day, thinks he could win the Indianapolis 500 and still get to Charlotte in time for the Coca-Cola 600 that night.
Some might say, “in your dreams” as Busch would want to soak up the atmosphere and fulfill all the postrace commitments of an Indy 500 winner before making the 90-minute trip between Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 25.
But even Busch knows the “dreams” are more about winning the Indianapolis 500 in his first IndyCar Series race.
“I have zero experience in an Indy car and this will be the toughest challenge, especially when they drop the green flag,” Busch said Saturday during a news conference in Las Vegas. “Single-car runs when I’m coming up to speed and doing qualifying runs, all that should handle itself.
“But when they drop the green at Indianapolis and 33 cars barrel down into turn one and all that dirty air and the movements of the cars and being able to digest closing rates at 220 (miles per hour) versus our stocks cars that average around 185, everything is different.”
Busch tried to find a way to race at an IndyCar event last year to be prepared, but never could make the logistics work where he would also have enough time to focus on his NASCAR ride.
“Sometimes you get that young dumb luck,” Busch said. “Maybe we’ll bump into that and that will help us, being naive and not having bad patterns. But those are some of those things that will bite you very quickly and that is the amount of respect you have to have for an Indy car.
“Those cars have all that rear weight with the engine in the back, that’s very different than our Cup cars that have the engine in the front with the weight distribution.”
In doing his rookie orientation at Indianapolis last year, Busch learned about throttle position and steering input, getting advice from team owner Michael Andretti, who will field a car for Busch this year.