On March 10, 2019, Kyle Busch saw Victory Lane for the first time that season with his win at the Phoenix Cup race. Months later, the driver of the No. 18 Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing would be crowned NASCAR Cup Series champion for the second time in his career. But, we're getting a little bit ahead of ourselves.
Busch's win at Phoenix marked the 52nd Cup win of his career, and throwing his Xfinity Series and Truck Series wins into the mix, he was right behind Richard Petty when it came to all-time wins across the NASCAR national series. Around two weeks later, Busch would break Petty's 200-wins record, making Busch the winningest driver across all three series. But, again, we're getting ahead of ourselves. In any case, Busch's penchant for winning a lot was already more than apparent in March 2019, and following his win in Phoenix, a reporter made a reference to that fact with a seemingly tongue-in-cheek question about Busch needing a separate house for all of his NASCAR trophies.
The question may have been intended as a joke, but Busch wasn't kidding in his response to it.
"You're not the first person that's asked me that question, but it is a funny question," Busch said. "Yes, I did have to build a house. It's a 77,000-square-foot building in Mooresville, North Carolina, that houses Kyle Busch Motorsports and houses 199 (race trophies) plus all of the KBM drivers' trophies and stuff like that."
"We've gotten our fair share of trophy cases that we've gone through. Every time we build a new one we fill it up, so it's a good problem to have. It's been fun."
Now, obviously, Busch doesn't need 77,000 square-feet worth of space for just his trophies. The building at KBM also houses old firesuits and race cars, and even has a wall of TVs that shows Kyle Busch highlights on repeat and a retail store that sells Kyle Busch merch. It's also probably not a stretch to assume that the place has not one, but several vending machines scattered throughout that offer nothing but M&M's.
Anyway, back to the trophies. As of the publication of this article, Busch has 60 Cup Wins, 102 Xfinity wins, and 62 Truck wins. Then, there are the two championship trophies and the six KBM Owners Champion trophies. Now, there's a reason Busch collects trophies the way he does: to solidify his spot among the NASCAR greats. In fact, following his Phoenix win, he even set his Cup Series win goal at 100. Yeah, no way he's hitting that benchmark, but it's always good to have goals.
A slightly more attainable goal for Kyle Busch, however, is winning the one trophy that's eluded him all these years: the Harley J. Earl Trophy.
Kyle Busch Is Still Chasing That Big Daytona 500 Win
Kyle Busch has won pretty much every big race you can think of. He's won the Coca-Cola 600, the All-Star Race, the Brickyard 400 twice, and the Busch Clash twice (including the inaugural running of the event at the Coliseum in Los Angeles). But, after all these years, he still has yet to win the Daytona 500.
Busch ran in his first Daytona 500 in 2005, driving the No. 5 Chevy for Hendrick Motorsports. He ultimately finished 38th at that year's running of the Great American Race. Today, Busch holds the record for most laps led in the Daytona 500 (32 laps) without winning it. The two-time champ has had a few close-but-no-cigar moments at the inaugural Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway, placing third at the race in 2016 and second in 2019. The Las Vegas native just hasn't been able to strike it lucky in Florida.
Ahead of the 2022 running of the Daytona 500, Busch expressed how much it would mean to win the race in an interview with Motorsport.com.
"Winning the Daytona 500 would be huge," he said. "The Daytona 500 is one that has eluded me, and many others for that matter. I would certainly like to think I could get that race checked off my list before it's all said and done, and to also be known as a Daytona 500 champion in addition to my championships and other race wins."
Ultimately, Busch placed sixth. Will 2023 be the year that Kyle Busch finally wins the NASCAR race known as the Super Bowl of Stock Car Racing? We'll all be tuning in to find out.
This post was originally published on March 11, 2019.