There’s nothing much that Kyle Busch likes to do more than race.
And he knows how many wins he has over his career.
That point was driven home with an exclamation point Friday afternoon at Kern County Raceway Park.
When the emcee of a press conference for the Fourth Annual Spears Winter Showdown incorrectly mentioned Busch's career win total at the NASCAR Cup level (it did not include the wins in 2017), Busch was quick to point out he had 43.
With that out of the way, the next question was how many total wins does Busch have in the top-three levels — Monster Energy NASCAR Cup, Xfinity Series and Camping World Truck Series.
“One hundred, eighty-three,” came the quick response from the 2015 Cup champion.
For the record, he has 91 wins at the Xfinity level and 49 at the Truck level.
Busch, 32, will have to wait a couple of weeks before trying to add to those totals at Daytona. But he can add another major Super Late Model title to his list of accomplishments in the Winter Showdown 300 on Saturday at Kern County Raceway.
“I want to come back here a few times, whether or not I win I’d still like to come back,” said Busch, who finished third in last year’s race. “It’s a cool place to race. It’s a really fun race track. It’s a big race track, there’s a lot of speed here.”
Busch said Super Late Models are near to his heart, which is part of the reason his Kyle Busch Motorsports team runs them.
Having his own Super Late Model (and Truck series team) allows him to climb into those when he wants and it also allows him to develop drivers. Former NASCAR West Series competitor Noah Gragson, who now drives fulltime in the Truck series for KBM, is driving another KBM Super Late Model in the Showdown.
“The Super Late Model thing for me is big because it’s sort of our start of our driver development program at Kyle Busch Motorsports,” Busch said. “We’ve had Erik Jones come through our Late Model team, onto the Truck series team and now he’s on to Cup. We’ve had Christopher Bell come through our Late Model team onto our Truck series team and now he’s going to the Xfinity Series … it’s just kind of what we do. It’s a driver development program. It’s something to give back to the local short tracks.”
But make no mistake, Busch wants to win anytime he puts on his helmet and slides into the seat. The last time he raced a Super Late Model was at the Snowball Derby in Florida last December and he walked away a winner.
“It was a huge win,” he said. “A lot of people argue that the Snowball Derby is the biggest race. With Kern County stepping up and being as big as it is and with the reputation it’s gained over the last couple of years it’s arguably one of the best as well.
“This event is actually turning out to be one of the greatest and best events in the country for the Super Late Model cars and for all these teams and all these drivers with $30,000 on the line to win. That’s a big payday for any of these guys. I know what it can do for our team and what we’ve got going on.”
As for last year’s Winter Showdown, Bush said he, and everyone else, just wasn’t good enough as Bakersfield’s Derek Thorn qualified No. 1 and led all 250 laps for the victory.
“Last year Derek definitely proved they had their game face on and they were ready to rock and roll and pretty much slapped us all away and said don’t come back.
“But we're all back. We’re ready”.
Mike Griffith can be reached at 661 395-7390. Follow him on Twitter at @MikeGriffith54.