DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (November 12, 2008) – Kurt Busch flew to Homestead-Miami Speedway on Wednesday but first made a quick detour to Daytona International Speedway to take part in November Test Days in preparation for the 47th anniversary Rolex 24 At Daytona on Jan. 24-25 at Daytona International Speedway.
Busch, who drives the No. 2 Dodge for Penske Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, tested a Penske Racing Porsche Riley Daytona Prototype as he prepares for his third career start in the Rolex 24, America’s toughest and most prestigious sports car event.
“Right now, we’ve got one more Cup race and then we get to relax a little bit and then pump up the regiment and get ready for the 24-hour race which isn’t until the end of January,” Busch said. “It’s a good time of year in NASCAR. You know you’re almost done (with the season) but then you’re looking forward to the fun of driving around in a sports car.”
Busch is becoming a regular fixture at the Rolex 24. He will make his third Rolex 24 start in the 2009 Rolex 24 and finished third overall with Penske-Taylor Racing in 2008 with co-drivers Helio Castroneves and Ryan Briscoe.
He has high hopes of collecting a Rolex watch that comes with a victory in the Rolex 24 in 2009.
“I’ve done the first step which is surrounding myself around a good team,” Busch said. “This Penske team is very qualified. All the crew guys, all the team officials that make calls, it’s just exciting for me to be a part of something that is this strong. I know I’m the weakest link and have the most homework to do.”
Busch, who won the Sprint Cup championship in 2004 with Roush Fenway Racing, doesn’t have a shot to win a Sprint Cup title this year and didn’t qualify for the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
But even with Jimmie Johnson is poised to win a third straight Sprint Cup championship in this weekend’s season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Busch is eager to get down to business at the 1.5-mile South Florida track and finish off the year with a victory.
“We’re there to put the Miller Lite Dodge in Victory Lane and to go off the end of the season with a big bang,” Busch said. “We want to run well. It’s been a track that has been good to us in the past and we’re hoping for a great run down in Homestead-Miami.”
November Test Days was the second of three major tune-ups for the Rolex 24 and had 40 sports cars on the entry list – 20 Daytona Prototypes and 20 GT class machines.
The final Rolex 24 prep session will be the January Test Days on Jan. 2-4 and the Roar Before The Rolex 24 fan fest.
The test sessions are open to the public and admission is $10 each day and the ticket includes access to the infield, Sprint FANZONE and garage. On Saturday, Jan. 3, there will be driver question and answer sessions between Rolex Series drivers and fans.