Kyle Busch signs deal with JGR
HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. -- Kyle Busch won't be leaving Joe Gibbs Racing anytime soon.
Team owner Joe Gibbs made it official Thursday, announcing Busch has signed a multiyear extension that will keep him with the Toyota organization well beyond 2013.
"The bad news is we work for him and we're broke," Joe Gibbs president J.D. Gibbs said jokingly.
The number of years of the deal were not made available, but among the terms: Busch will drive the No. 54 Nationwide Series Monster Energy car under the JGR umbrella instead of Kyle Busch Motorsports, and KBM will get its Nationwide and Truck engines from JGR instead of Triad Racing Technologies.
Busch will drive 25 Nationwide races and approximately 10 Truck races, all at Sprint Cup companion events.
It is a complete turnaround from last season, when JGR asked Busch to reduce his non-Cup events after being suspended late in the 2011 season for intentionally wrecking Ron Hornaday under caution in a Truck race at Texas.
"I wouldn't say anybody was wrong," Busch said of reducing his schedule to keep him focused on Cup. "We tried something and it didn't work."
Busch is coming off a disappointing season in which he had only one win, missed the Chase and finished 13th in points. He has 24 career Cup wins and a record 51 in the Nationwide Series.
"He just has to do a good job of managing things and not getting frustrated, because sometimes you have something that carries over from one event to the next," Joe Gibbs said of Busch expanding his schedule again.
Busch said he had at least two lucrative options beyond the extension with JGR. He did not identify the teams, but those that were in the market for a driver included Stewart-Haas Racing, Penske Racing and Richard Childress Racing.
"I did it all privately," Busch said. "I did meet with some other teams and they were very interested. There were some very nice, lucrative deals that were out there to pursue.
"Ultimately, what it comes down to is relationships and things you've developed over the last five or six years."
Richard Childress Racing's Kevin Harvick reportedly already signed with SHR for 2014 at the end of last season.
David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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