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Kurt Busch ‘not too worried’ about being without announced Cup ride

59th Annual DAYTONA 500

DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 26: Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the 59th Annual DAYTONA 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 26, 2017 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

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Although Stewart-Haas Racing and Kurt Busch have not completed a deal for Busch to remain in the No. 41 car for next season, the former champion said Wednesday in Las Vegas “I’m not too worried about it.’’

Busch spoke more of it being only a formality until he is announced as back in the No. 41 car.

“I think that my best chance to win races and to win championships is to be with Stewart-Haas Racing,’’ Busch said Wednesday after the Myers Brothers Awards. “I talked with other owners and the offers were about the same from other teams, but the offers weren’t the same as far as the level of car. To work with (engine builder) Doug Yates and Ford and all the individuals that I’ve grown around and felt comfortable with at Stewart-Haas, that’s not available at other teams. We’ll see how it all plays out. I’m not too worried about it.’’

Busch, who won this past season’s Daytona 500 with Stewart-Haas, was asked if there was a deadline to get the deal done.

“No deadline,’’ he said. “I think with the support I have from Monster (Energy) and the support I have from Ford, everybody is on the same page. It’s more about the people and plugging in the right puzzle pieces in the right place.’’

Busch’s status was put into question Aug. 1 when Stewart-Haas Racing announced it would not renew its contract with him. Even then, Stewart-Haas Racing stated it expected to have Busch back.

Even without an announced ride, Busch, a former champion, is focused on what he can accomplish in 2018.

“I would love to win a couple of the races … that I haven’t won before and really focus hard on the crown jewel events such as Indianapolis,’' he said. “We came very close at Darlington this year. To win Monster Energy’s All-Star Race, that would be a high, high priority for next year. Just bundling that consistency to make sure we have a stronger run in the playoffs.’’

Busch finished 14th in the points. He was eliminated after the first round of the playoffs. Busch finished with one win, six top-five finishes and 15 top-10 results.

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