Richard Childress Racing swapped the over-the-wall pit crews for Kyle Busch and Austin Dillon this week as Busch works toward advancing in the NASCAR Cup Series postseason.
Busch, a two-time series champion, said Friday he didn’t push for the change but was among those who made the suggestion. It then became a conversation amongst key individuals in the company.
“It was a group decision; it was a group conversation that kind of happened, but there was one guy who made the decision,” Busch said. “Austin was included in that conversation as well.
“I feel like if you could go with an eight, nine pit crew to a nine, 10 pit crew, you’re going to take it right now. You have to. Whether it’s speed or consistency or both – in our case, I think it was both – if there’s an improvement you can make, you’ve got to make it right now.”
Saturday night at Bristol Motor Speedway (6:30 p.m. ET) is the first elimination race in the postseason. Busch and the No. 8 team entered as the No. 5 seed and is 24 points above the cutline. Dillon did not earn a postseason berth.
Busch’s new over-the-wall crew will be Joshua Thomas (front changer), Paul Swan (tire carrier), Ethan Tingler (rear changer), and Nick Covey (jack). No change was made among the fuelers.
The first time Busch will work with his new crew will be in the race. He was unable to make it to the Childress campus this week for pit practice.
“There wasn’t time this week, unfortunately,” Busch said. “My schedule didn’t allow me to get up there on Tuesday when they were doing pit practice stuff. Hopefully it’s a plug-and-play and everything’s good.”