He is the latest winner in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series, and if 2004 series champion Kurt Busch has his way, he'll be back in victory lane Sunday when the series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway.

It won't be unfamiliar territory for the driver of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge. Busch has five wins at the Tennessee short track, tied with Jeff Gordon for the most wins among active drivers. But Busch hasn't won there since 2006, and he says the controversial track resurfacing done in 2007 hasn't helped him.

"I haven't had the success since they have resurfaced it," Busch said. "I believe it's the fact that it's not so cut and dry anymore. You had to race the bottom. That's where you had to get your car to set up and work well. Now you can
run around anywhere on that racetrack. It still has some small things that are Bristol, but yet it's not as tough, it's not as mean as it used to be."

Bristol, not tough?

"Well, it definitely still has its same attitude, in that if you're the leader, and the second-place car catches you, the second-place car is usually a little quicker," Busch said. "That's because you caught 'em. Does that leader want to give up that inside or does he want to give up the lead or is it a guy behind him he doesn't care for and he really wants to put up a fight? That's what makes Bristol great.

"Usually the fastest car wins, but a lot of times it's who had the strategy to stay out, who ended up dodging the traffic the best when cars get in the traffic, that will happen.


So that's what makes Bristol so exciting, is you just never can predict how things are going to happen."

Busch caught the attention of fans two weeks ago in Atlanta when he drove his victory lap there backwards. But it wasn't as spontaneous as it appeared.

"The victory lap going backwards was definitely thought about beforehand," Busch admitted. "Me and my buddies might have had too many Miller Lites one night and said, 'Let's do it. Let's see if the reverse gear will make it all the way around the racetrack.' It did.

"I didn't practice it, because I thought it would tear up the transmission or the motor, having to turn the engine. I think the corners were the easiest. It was the straightaways that were the tough part," Busch joked.

Now one fan can name Busch's backwards victory lap. Log on to www.KurtBusch.com to enter the contest.

"We'll send the winner a nice gift basket and that one lucky fan will always have the bragging rights for naming the lap," Busch said.

He will announce the winning victory lap name this weekend.

Ellen Siska writes about NASCAR for The York Dis patch. She can be reached at esiska@yorkdis patch.com.