Kyle Busch: Media Favorite to Win Nationwide Series Championship

Ben BombergerSenior Writer IMarch 11, 2009

Kyle Busch has been impressive in all three NASCAR Series he has run in during last season, and so far in 2009.

The media, has paid attention.

After the inaugural media poll, Busch took home the top honors as the driver predicted to win the Nationwide Series championship.

Busch edged fellow Cup regular Carl Edwards for the driver title with 446 votes, compared to Edwards' 434.

Busch collected 25 first-place votes, while Edwards had only 19.

Media predicted the owner championship as well, also selecting Busch's No. 18 Z-Line Designs/NOS Energy Drink Toyota out of the Joe Gibbs Racing stable.

The No. 18 beat out the No. 60 Scotts/Save-A-Lot Ford of Edwards by a final vote of 302-268.

The No. 18 received 16 first-place votes, to nine for the No. 60.

Last year's champion, the No. 20 JGR Toyota, finished the voting in fourth. The series' driver and owner championships haven't been unified since 2006.

"It was fun last year just doing the part-time deal, but this year we're excited about doing the full-time deal," Busch said. "Certainly the goal is to win the championship for Joe Gibbs Racing—they haven't had a driver's championship in the Nationwide Series. The first championship last fall was with an owner's championship, so we're trying to get both.

"I think we've got the right equipment and the right guys to make a run at it. I think there are other guys that can challenge Carl and me, but both of us finished in the top two a lot in the end last year and we've both been up there to start the season."

In the Raybestos Rookie of the Year battle, voters believe Penske's Justin Allgaier will overtake Brendan Gaughan. Allgaier drivers the No. 12 Verizon Wireless Dodge, and beat out Gaughan 277 votes to 266.

Allgaier had 19 first-place votes, while Gaughan had 14.



1. Kyle Busch
2. Carl Edwards
3. Brad Keselowski
4. Jason Leffler
5. Justin Allgaier
6. Brendan Gaughan
7. Mike Bliss
8. Jason Keller
9. Steve Wallace
10. Scott Lagasse Jr.



1. No. 18 JGR
2. No. 60 RFR
3. No. 29 RCR
4. No. 20 JGR
5. No. 33 KHI
6. No. 88 JR Motorsports
7. No. 16 RFR
8. No. 6 RFR
9. No. 32 Braun Racing
10. No. 38 Braun Racing



1. Justin Allgaier
2. Brendan Gaughan
3. Scott Lagasse Jr.
4. Michael McDowell
5. Michael Annett
6. Erik Darnell
7. John Wes Townley
8. Ken Butler III