NASCAR Cup Series 2021 Buschy McBusch Race 400 at Kansas: Preview and Prediction

Published 05/01/2021, 11:30 AM EDT
Apr 25, 2021; Talladega, Alabama, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Bubba Wallace (23) leads during the GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Mandatory Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports


The NASCAR Cup Series 2021 season returns to racing on 1.5-mile tracks with a visit to Kansas Speedway for Sunday’s Buschy McBusch Race 400. After the events of Talladega last weekend where a ninth different winner in 2021 emerged, Kansas is expected to produce a race not as eventful, but still quite exciting.

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Since the introduction of the new aerodynamics package on speedway in 2019, NASCAR Cup races have become more exciting at tracks like Kansas. Another overtime finish could be in store for Sunday’s race, where Brad Keselowski and William Byron start on the front row.

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Keselowski has momentum on his side, and Kansas has been one of his better tracks off late. He has four top-five finishes in his last four races there, including a win in 2019. But he will face some very stiff competition on the 1.5-mile track.

Kyle Larson and his incredible run in the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season

Larson‘s Kansas stats may not suggest he is one of the top favorites there. However, it is his supremacy on 1.5-mile tracks and his consistency in 2021 that raise his billing. His win this season came at Las Vegas, a track that runs quite similarly to Kansas.

The 28-year-old’s numbers are among the best this year when it comes to restarts, pit crew performance, and he has been the best passer this season and in recent time. Those factors are important at tracks like Kansas. While he was good at Kansas in the No. 42 car, he is expected to be quite dominant in the No. 5 car on Sunday.

Mar 7, 2021; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Kyle Larson (5) crosses the finish line to win the Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Denny Hamlin‘s frustration at still being winless this year might be high after coming close on many occasions. That also might motivate him even more at Kansas, where he has won two of the last three races, including last season’s regular-season race. He has been incredible all year and will look to seal that playoff spot with a win on Sunday.

His JGR teammate Martin Truex Jr. will look to give him a run for his money. Truex Jr. has been very consistent at Kansas as well and has two wins there, both coming in 2017.

Can Kevin Harvick and Chase Elliott return to winning ways at Kansas?

Kansas presents the perfect opportunity for Kevin Harvick to return to winning ways. Harvick finished in the top-five there in both races last year, and with three career wins there, he will always fancy his chances.

Apr 25, 2021; Talladega, Alabama, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Brad Keselowski (2) takes the lead from NASCAR Cup Series driver Matt DiBenedetto (21) during the GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Mandatory Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Chase Elliott is another top driver under pressure to win in 2021. While the upcoming road courses on the schedule will probably see Elliott dominate, he will look to earn his second career Kansas Cup win. Since that win in 2018, Elliott has two more top-five finishes and another top-10 finish there.

The track’s latest NASCAR Cup Series winner, Joey Logano, is another top favorite. Logano won the 2020 playoff race and is joint-highest among active drivers in most Kansas wins. After the dirt win, Logano will want to win on a speedway as well.

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Who will win the Kansas NASCAR Cup Series 2021 race?

While the likes of Alex Bowman, Ryan Blaney, and even Kyle Busch cannot be counted out along with the others, it is hard to look beyond ‘Yung Money’ for the Buschy McBusch Race 400.

Larson has had his sights set on Kansas ever since that Las Vegas win, and it will be no surprise if he even dominates on his way to a win.

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Prediction: Kyle Larson to win the Buschy McBusch Race 400 at Kansas

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Aayush Majumdar

1006 articles

Aayush Majumdar is a NASCAR content strategist, a Tennis Writer, and a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. He is well-tenured as a tennis and NASCAR writer, with over 900 articles across both sports. After pursuing a Post Graduate program in Sports Management, Aayush explored various roles in Sports Media, including a Sports Reporting role at a leading English daily.

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