Kyle Busch has announced the identity of the driver who will take the wheel of the #54 Kyle Busch Motorsports Nationwide Series car in 2012 when the owner-driver himself isn't competing: and he stunned the NASCAR paddock by confirming that he'd signed his brother, Kurt Busch.
"I'm his boss - that is what I am," laughed Kyle, who at 26 is seven years his brother's junior. The last time the two raced together was 13 years ago for their father Tom in Legends cars in their native city of Las Vegas.
The brothers have also picked up big-name sponsor Monster Energy to back the venture in a full-season, multi-year deal.
The exact division of which Busch will drive which Nationwide race is yet to be decided, with Kyle planning to run 13-15 races and Kurt then taking the wheel for the remainder of the 33-race season.
"I probably wouldn't have gotten Kurt if I'd only offered him ten races," Kyle said of his thinking behind the decision to run a minority of the events during the season. "He probably would have said, 'that's not worth my time,' [so] I gave him something worthwhile."
"He'll probably want some of the easier portion of the schedule because he's the owner!" joked Kurt. "But between the two of us, we're racing all 33 Nationwide races on the schedule ... We'll see who the best Busch brother is gonna be as far as who gets to Victory Lane more!"
Kyle will likely start the first five races, as he is guaranteed entry to the race thanks to being a past Nationwide series champion. Kurt will take the road course outings (he won last year's Nationwide race at Watkins Glen as a late substitute for the injured Brad Keselowski) and will likely run the majority of races toward the end of the season when Kyle is expected to be involved in the Chase for the Sprint Cup play-offs.
The announcement of the Busch reunification came as a something of a major surprise, as NASCAR lore has it that the two brothers don't get along. That stems from the 2007 All-Star race that saw them wreck each other while racing for $1m, after which they didn't talk for months until their grandmother intervened at the Thanksgiving Day family gathering.
"The only thing that we had run in our way was dollar signs at the All-Star race that year," insisted Kurt. "Anytime somebody is going for a million bucks, you forget who your brother is," he admitted, adding: "I think we've always gotten along really well on track, to draft with each other, to yield to each other, it just hasn't been well documented."
Kyle insisted that their reluctance to team up in NASCAR over the years hadn't been down to personal animosity, but more to do with his own personal desire to establish himself in the sport in his own right.