Despite missing the first 11 races of the season, Kyle Busch will be eligible for the Chase for the Sprint Cup even though a rule is in place that states the driver must compete in every event of the season.
Busch, who has missed time due to injury, received a waiver from NASCAR keeping him eligible for the Chase, which consists of 16 drivers.
It’ll be an uphill climb for Busch, who still has to qualify. The Chase is determined by the regular season points leader followed by the top-15 race winners. But in order to qualify via wins, a driver must finish in the top 30 in points. There are 15 races left in the NASCAR season.
“Our decision to grant Kyle a waiver that allows him to continue running for a championship is one we discussed extensively,” NASCAR executive vice president Steve O’Donnell said in a news release. “The spirit of the rule never was designed to punish drivers who are unable to compete due to extenuating circumstances such as recovering from a racing accident.”
In order for Busch to qualify, based on the current pace of the field, he’ll have to average between 14th and 17th place finishes the rest of the way, in addition to winning a race. Currently, Trevor Bayne is in 29th place with 190 points (450-point pace) and Tony Stewart is 30th with 179 points (423-point pace).
Busch has to average between 28-30 points per race to meet that pace. He averaged 25 points per race last season.