Busch, who won his second Cup title last year with Toyota, is driving for sister brand Lexus in the GTD class at Daytona, and got his first of the car on the track’s 3.5-mile road course on Friday. He said he wanted the car’s suspension to be set softer, only to be told that was impossible by the team’s engineers.
“I’m already trying to setup the car,” said Busch after the first session. “We’re talking about the car – ‘I’ve got understeer here, oversteer there’ – and those sort of things, and I suggested us going softer. And they’re like ‘we’re as soft as we can get it’. And I said ‘well that ain’t soft enough!’”
Comparing it to NASCAR machinery, Busch added: “There’s definitely some [tricks] to these cars and what these guys are doing, I feel like the NASCAR teams and the engineers are pretty sophisticated and pretty advanced. I mean these guys are smart as well too, but I don’t think I’ve ever heard that we’re as soft as we can go.
“You always think of different ways of being able to engineer something, but obviously there’s a rulebook as well too, so I have no familiarity with any of that, so I could be totally off base to what my team already knows – and I don’t.”
Busch says he’s been working closely with the #14 car’s fastest driver, former IndyCar racer Jack Hawksworth, to fast-track his learning.
“With Jack we were talking about the car, and what it’s doing,” he added. “We’re saying very similar things to the guys in the other car too.
“So now we’re each gonna go in kinda different directions and see whether that leads to better performance. We’ll reconvene and figure it out some more.”