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Busch chasing Truck title for Ballew

He may have missed out on NASCAR's Chase for the Championship, but Kyle Busch remains committed to lifting some end-of-season silverware.

Billy Ballew has been an owner in the Camping World Truck Series since 1996 and began racing full time in it in 2002. He typically has used multiple drivers each season, preventing his team from winning that championship.

NASCAR also has an owners' championship and, in the 14 previous truck seasons, it has gone to the owner of the team with the champion driver. Ballew, with Kyle Busch's invaluable help, wants to become the first to win the owners' title without having the champion driver.

Busch's #51 Billy Ballew Motorsports Toyota enters Friday's WinStar World Casino 350 at Texas Motor Speedway trailing Ron Hornaday Jr.'s #33 Kevin Harvick Inc Chevrolet by 100 points and, with only three races remaining, including Texas, it's a big deficit for Busch and crew chief Richie Wauters to overcome. Big, but not impossible, however, especially as Busch chopped 78 points off the gap with his victory - and Hornaday's 17th-place finish - at Talladega last week.

It was Busch's fourth straight win in truck races he has entered and his sixth victory in twelve starts this season. He has also finished second three times.

“Is [the championship] possible? Yes, but it might not be probable,” Ballew admitted, “We'll give it our best effort and see where it shakes out after Texas, Phoenix and Homestead. It is definitely something we think about, and it would mean the world to me and the Billy Ballew Motorsports team to win a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series owner championship after 14 years competing.”

Busch, who will drive the #51 in the final two races of the season at Phoenix and Homestead, began driving for Ballew, a 50-year-old businessman from Blairsville, in 2005 and has 15 of the team's 16 victories. He made a concerted effort to help Ballew win the owners' title last year, when he drove in 18 races, but the team finished third in owners' points.

“We want to win the owners' championship for Billy Ballew,” Busch said early in the season, “He does everything he can to keep this team going.”

Brian Ickler, who has run six races having been recommended by Busch, as well as Aric Almirola (two), Denny Hamlin (one) and Travis Kvapil (one) have driven the #51 this season, and all have made productive contributions. Ickler was third at Michigan and fifth at Kansas, Almirola was second at Iowa and eighth at Las Vegas, Hamlin sixth at the second Martinsville race and Kvapil was eleventh at Nashville.

Hornaday, meanwhile, has a 202-point lead over second-placed Matt Crafton in the drivers' championship, but also wants to bring home a title to Kevin and DeLana Harvick.

“Matt Crafton isn't our worry,” Hornaday said, “We are worried about the #51. He is fighting for the owners' points, and he's the guy we're racing too.”

There are also bragging rights for most wins this season at stake over the final three races, as Hornaday also has six.

by Tim Tuttle / Special to the Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service


Tagged as: Kyle Busch , truck , billy ballew

Related Pictures

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Kyle Busch and Crasftsman Truck team owner Billy Ballew   [pic credit: NASCAR/Getty]
Erik Jones, driver of the #4 Toyota Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Erik Jones, driver of the #4 Toyota Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Erik Jones, driver of the #4 Toyota Toyota, races with Cole Custer, driver of the #00 Haas Automation Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Erik Jones, driver of the #4 Toyota Toyota, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Cameron Hayley, driver of the #13 Cabinets by Hayley/The Carolina Nut Co. Toyota, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Cameron Hayley, driver of the #13 Cabinets by Hayley/The Carolina Nut Co. Toyota, races with Erik Jones, driver of the #4 Toyota Toyota, during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Cole Custer, driver of the #00 Haas Automation Chevrolet, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Ideal Door/Menards Toyota, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Alex Tagliani, driver of the #29 Cooper Standard Ford, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on August 30, 2015 in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 Skittles Toyota, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series IRWIN Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota, and Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 Skittles Toyota, lead the field past the green flag to start the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series IRWIN Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, celebrates with the chequered flag after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Curry/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR XFINITY Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #20 Hisense Toyota, and Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, lead the field past the green flag to start the NASCAR XFINITY Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images)

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