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Monster Energy NASCAR Cup

Can Kyle Busch Finally Erase Charlotte Jinx?

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Fresh off victories at Dover International Speedway and New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Kyle Busch is far and away the hottest driver in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series right now.

Busch, the 2015 Cup champion, is certainly one of the frontrunners for the title this year, one of three drivers — the others being Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Larson — who have distanced themselves from the field in terms of consistent excellent results.

So coming into Sunday’s Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Busch certainly has to be one of the drivers in the conversation about who will win on the 1.5-mile North Carolina quad oval.

There’s only one problem, an anomaly, really: Of the 23 tracks where the Cup Series races each year, Charlotte is the only one where Busch has never won a points race.

And it’s not like Busch isn’t good at Charlotte. He won the Monster Energy All-Star race there in May and finished second in the Coca-Cola 600. Busch has eight NASCAR XFINITY Series victories at Charlotte and six more in the Camping World Truck Series.

In the Cup Series, Busch’s 11 top-five finishes trail only Matt Kenseth (12) and Jimmie Johnson (15).

But still not a points victory in a Charlotte Cup race.

And that very well could change on Sunday, when Busch will try to be the first Cup driver since Joey Logano in 2015 to win three races in a row.

Despite not winning here — yet — Charlotte is a place Busch loves to race.

“Charlotte is my favorite racetrack for a lot of reasons. Just growing up watching races on TV, I loved watching the All-Star Race under the lights and the 600 with all the sparks flying and all the guys going after hard-fought, hard-racing wins,” he said. “The Xfinity Series has been good to me there. The Truck Series has been pretty good to me there, too. In Cup, I’ve had a lot of good finishes, but haven’t won one until the All-Star Race in May, but hoping that’s the beginning of good things for me there.”

It just might be.

“I’m hoping we can change that this weekend and get a fall Cup win,” Busch said of his Charlotte luck. “There are plenty of other tracks we need to win at, too, but there’s no doubt a Charlotte win would be big with our Interstate Batteries Toyota.”

Tom Jensen

Tom Jensen is a veteran motorsports journalist. He spent 13 years with, where he was Digital Content Manager. Previously, he was executive editor of NASCAR Scene and managing editor of National Speed Sport News. Jensen served as the president of the National Motorsports Press Association and is the group’s former Writer of the Year.