On the Hot Seat: Kurt Busch

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On the Hot Seat: Kurt Busch is the first in a series of articles designed to examine drivers who might find themselves in a different spot in the 2022 season.  This may be due to contract prospects, developments in the sport, or evolving interests. 

Kurt Busch has been a mainstay in the NASCAR Cup Series for over two decades.  The Las Vegas, Nevada native has had a tumultuous career seeing him drive for close to half a dozen teams.  Going into the 2021 season the elder Busch brother has logged 32 wins, 150 top-fives, and 315 top-tens.  He is the 2004 NASCAR Cup Series Champion and the winner of the 2017 Daytona 500.  Despite a Hall of Fame-worthy resume, 2021 finds Kurt Busch in possibly the hottest seat of his entire career. 

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Kevin Harvick Tosses his Career-Best Season Upside Down

Kevin Harvick tosses his career-best season with nine victories upside down during the playoffs and ends his chance to run for the NASCAR Cup title.

COMMENTARY—The No. 4 team’s elimination was their fault, not NASCAR, not the points format, or the actions of any other team

The elimination of the NASCAR Cup Series regular-season champion Kevin Harvick after the Xfinity 500 at Martinsville Speedway sure is sparking a lot of hand-wringing and discussion among NASCAR fans.  NASCAR Twitter and Reddit saw a flood of posts on the subject ranging from well-reasoned analysis to outright ranting and raving. 

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Is Kyle Busch Really on the Ropes?

Is Kyle Busch really on the ropes when he states that he'll be eliminated in the next NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs Round of 12?
Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Is Kyle Busch really on the ropes when he says that he’ll be eliminated in the next NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs Round of 12?

For most of his NASCAR Cup Series career, Kyle Busch seems invincible.  He has an uncanny ability to win races at will and is an easy fantasy pick every weekend.  But now, for whatever reason, 2020 is different.  This season, the defending 2019 NASCAR Cup Series Champion appears to be mortal.  Kyle Busch is now beatable on the track.

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William Byron Needs One More Clutch Moment

Byron is in need of another clutch moment after mediocre results in two of three NASCAR Cup Series playoff races in the Round of 16.
RICHMOND, VIRGINIA – SEPTEMBER 12: William Byron, driver of the No. 24 Liberty University Chevrolet, waits on the grid prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond Raceway on September 12, 2020, in Richmond, Virginia. Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

William Byron needs one more clutch moment after mediocre results in two of three NASCAR Cup Series playoff races in the Round of 16.

The buzzer-beater basket; The go-ahead field goal as time expires; the walk-off home run; These are the clutch moments in sports that are the reason people watch and look forward to seeing. 

In the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway, 22-year-old William Byron pulled off NASCAR’s version of that moment.  Byron entered the race in a tight battle with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson and Wood Brothers Racing’s Matt DiBenedetto for the final two playoff spots. In Byron’s Daytona clutch moment, he not only advances to the playoffs but he scores his first career NASCAR Cup Series victory.

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Matt DiBenedetto is Set to Make his First Playoff Appearance

Matt DiBenedetto is set to make his first NASCAR Cup Series playoff appearance at Darlington Raceway on Sunday, September 6th.

Matt DiBenedetto is set to make his first NASCAR Cup Series playoff appearance at Darlington Raceway on Sunday, September 6th.

As the checkered flag was falling on the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway last Saturday night, one driver most certainly was breathing a huge sigh of relief.  Matt DiBenedetto, the driver of the No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford is in the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs.  In his post-race interview, he talks about how mentally exhausting the pressure cooker of a race was for him.

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