The team broke its own mark of 9.1 seconds set at Richmond earlier this season, both times thanks to a practiced choreography that involves the rear tire changer passing in front of the car to get to the far side, rather than waiting for it to stop and going around the back.
Edited point of view video from two of Busch’s crew members shows what it takes to swap the wheels, which feature a single center-lug design on this year’s Next Gen Cup Series cars instead of the traditional five-lug setup.
The change has cut about four seconds from an average four-tire stop, but has led to several wheels coming off as teams adjust to the new design. That includes one from the Joe Gibbs Racing car of Denny Hamlin at Dover.
Pit stops aren’t always as crucial in NASCAR as they are in some other racing series, like Formula One where a larger crew can change the tires in two seconds, but a quick one under caution can put a car in a better position for a restart.
That fact was never so evident as it was during last year’s championship race in Phoenix where an 11.8-second final stop performed by Kyle Larson’s Hendrick Motorsports team allowed him to take the lead and hold onto it for the final 24 lap run to the checkered flag and his first career title.
Kyle Busch finished the Kansas race in third place behind Larson and his brother Kurt Busch, who scored his first win for Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan’s 23XI Racing team.