Anywhere Kurt Busch goes, he is a champion, a winner and a future NASCAR Hall of Famer.
Still, Busch is a competitor. During his retirement announcement last month, the 2004 NASCAR Cup Series champion noted one thing he didn’t quite do.
“I was going for my own little stat. I was trying to create a 30/30 club, which is 30 wins and 30 poles. And I think there are only a few select drivers who fit in that category. I came up just a little short and maybe that was my improper motivation at Pocono,” Busch said.
In fact, there are just 20 NASCAR Cup Series drivers who have earned at least 30 wins and 30 poles in the series’ 75-year history:
Closest to the 30/30 club is Kurt Busch. He earned 34 wins but 28 poles.
Still, he isn’t the only champion who just missed the cut:
- 7-time champion Dale Earnhardt – 76 wins, 22 poles
- 3-time champion Lee Petty – 54 wins, 18 poles
- 3-time champion Tony Stewart – 49 wins, 15 poles
- 2003 champion Matt Kenseth – 39 wins, 20 poles
- 1999 champion Dale Jarrett – 32 wins, 16 poles
- 1960 champion Rex White – 28 wins, 36 poles
Active champion Joey Logano is most likely to be driver No. 21 in the 30/30 club. At age 33, he has 32 wins and 28 poles and is averaging around two poles a year.
Brad Keselowski (35 wins, 18 poles) and Martin Truex Jr. (34 wins, 21 poles) are also close.
However, since 2019, Keselowski and Truex combine for just six poles. With respect to them, 59% of the races (103 of 180) since then had qualifying.
Opposite of Kurt Busch, these drivers qualify for the 30/30 club on poles but not on wins:
- Ryan Newman – 51 poles, 18 wins
- Buddy Baker – 38 poles, 19 wins
- Geoff Bodine – 37 poles, 18 wins
- Fonty Flock – 33 poles, 19 wins
- Fred Lorenzen – 32 poles, 26 wins
Kurt Busch earned multiple wins at Bristol (6 wins), Atlanta (4 wins), Loudon (3 wins), Pocono (3 wins), Michigan (2 wins), Martinsville (2 wins)
Busch’s wins at Bristol account for 18% of his Cup Series wins. Every 15th win in his career also came at Bristol:
- Win No. 1 – March 2002
- Win No. 15 – March 2006 (fifth Bristol win)
- Win No. 30 – August 2018 (sixth and final Bristol win)
Kurt Busch won five times in a nine-race span between March 2002 and 2006.
In all, Busch won 38.5% of the starts he made on the classic Bristol configuration.