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Kurt Busch: ‘We’re in negotiations’ on 2018 contract

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FORT WORTH, Texas — Fresh off his Coors Light Pole Award-winning run at Texas Motor Speedway, Kurt Busch offered a short statement on his contract status for beyond 2017.

“No updates from me,” Busch said. “We’re in negotiations so days like today help quite a bit.”

Stewart-Haas Racing co-owner Tony Stewart chimed in on the ongoing talks about the future of the No. 41 team on Sunday after SHR’s Kevin Harvick prevailed in the AAA Texas 500. Stewart noted that the organization plans to announce Tuesday the 2018 replacement for Danica Patrick in its No. 10 Ford; SHR has fielded Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series entries for Harvick, Busch, Patrick and Clint Bowyer in its four-car campaign this year.

“We’re still working through all that, but obviously it’s pretty busy right now,” Stewart said. “Obviously, we’re going to have a big announcement next week for the 10 car and we’re still working on the 41 right now. But that’s our goal is to have Kurt back in that car for next year.”

Busch posted a fast lap of 200.915 mph in the final round of group qualifying to notch his 22nd pole of his career. The 39-year-old Las Vegas native, who won the season-opening Daytona 500 in Ford’s first race with SHR in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, qualified for the 2017 Playoffs but failed to advance past the Round of 16.

Busch confirmed that he was a free agent in August after SHR reportedly declined his contract option. The team tweeted out at the time that Busch was expected to return to the organization in 2018.

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In 18 seasons thus far, Busch won the 2004 championship and has 29 wins at the sport’s top level. In four seasons at SHR, Busch has five wins and has qualified for NASCAR’s postseason in each season with the Tony Stewart-Gene Haas owned organization.

Contributing: Staff reports

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