Busch Series Halfway Home

Busch Series Halfway Home

Busch Series Halfway Home

The NASCAR Busch Series reaches the midway point of the 2007 season this weekend as the circuit tackles Daytona International Speedway for Friday night's Winn-Dixie 250.

While there have been 11 different winners in the first 18 races of the season, the year has been dominated by Carl Edwards, who brings a whopping 784 point advantage over second place David Reutimann into Friday's visit to "The World Center of Racing."

"This team has been absolutely fantastic all year," said Edwards, who of course will be doing double duty this weekend with Saturday night's NEXTEL Cup Series Pepsi 400 at Daytona. "We want to win the Busch Series title badly and it'd be a great honor to ass that championship to my racing resume."

Second place Reutimann hopes to drive into Daytona's victory lane Friday night and score a popular homestate win for the Florida native. Reutimann will pilot the Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota in Friday night's race.

"It’s good to be back at Daytona, which is the closest thing to a home track that I’ll ever have on this level," Reutimann said, who will also be trying to get into Saturday night's NEXTEL Cup Pepsi 400.

"I’m excited about being here. I think we’ve got a couple of good cars – both Cup and Busch. Hopefully we will get in the show for Saturday night and I think we’ll have a good Aaron’s Dream Machine on Friday."

Another Florida native, Aric Almirola who was credited with his first career Busch Series win two weeks ago at Milwaukee despite giving up his seat to teammate Denny Hamlin during the race, is also looking forward to competing in front of his friends and family.

"I’ve been (to Daytona) many times to watch the Pepsi 400 and the Daytona 500," said Almorila, who was the pole winner for the February Busch Series race at DIS. "I always wondered how I could get on the other side of the fence. Matter of fact, I snuck in there one time with my grandpa, underage. When I got in there, I realized that this is what I wanted to do. It was an experience I will never forget. From that day forward, I realized that was my dream and I am still working on it."

Defending Series champion Kevin Harvick will also be in Friday night's field, looking to sweep the Busch-Cup weekend as he did at Daytona last February.

Harvick knows things wil be different racing at Daytona in mid-summer compared to back when the season began.

"The track gets hot and slick during the races in July," he said. "The handling characteristics become magnified a lot more. We are shooting for a good-handling car. We are willing to knock a little speed out of the car for it to handle better."

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