One of NASCAR’s biggest stars will be making his way back to Pensacola, Florida’s Five Flags Speedway this December. 2015 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Busch has filed an official entry for the 50th Annual Snowball Derby. The Las Vegas, Nevada driver will pilot the No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota for 300 laps around the historic half-mile oval on Sunday, December 3, 2017.
“The Snowball Derby is the biggest race in the Late Model industry and with this year being the 50th annual event I feel like it’s going to be extra special,” Busch said. “Tim Bryant and all of his staff, as well as everyone at Speed 51, they always do such a great job promoting this event and the fans always turnout because the racing is exciting.”
Busch has fielded entries as a car owner in recent years for drivers such as 2013 race winner Erik Jones and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Christopher Bell. This year, with the NASCAR banquet in Las Vegas being changed to an earlier date, the schedule will allow the 2009 Snowball Derby champion to take another serious run at Super Late Model racing’s biggest prize.
“I was debating on whether or not to enter the Derby this year even before they moved the Cup Series banquet to Thursday night, so once that changed and it will allow me to get to Five Flags Speedway on Friday to qualify my own car, I was all in.
“Winning the Snowball Derby is challenging because all of the best short-track drivers in the country have it circled on their calendars, so I’m looking forward to seeing where we stack up against the competition,” added Busch, who has won four times on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series this year. “It would make for a heck of a week if I could celebrate being the Cup Series champion in Las Vegas on Thursday night and then collect another Tom Dawson Trophy in Pensacola on Sunday.”
The year 2017 has been a year that has seen Busch compete in a handful of Late Model races throughout the country. Already this year, he has competed in the Winter Showdown at Kern County Raceway Park (CA), Easter Bunny 150 at Hickory Motor Speedway (NC), Vermont Governor’s Cup at Thunder Road (VT), Kalamazoo Klash at Kalamazoo Speedway (MI) and Dixieland 250 at Wisconsin Int’l Raceway.
Busch’s attempt at the 50th Annual Snowball Derby will be his fourth at the prestigious race. In addition to his victory in 2009, he also finished third in 2012.
The NASCAR Cup Series driver is expected to join a stout field of Super Late Model drivers from all over the United States and Canada. A full list of current entries for the 50th Annual Snowball Derby is expected to be released soon.
Fans attending this year’s Snowball Derby will have the chance to purchase a VIP pass to a meet and greet with Busch. Tickets for the “Rowdy Roundup,” which will take place from 10 – 11 a.m. CT on Sunday in the Fan Zone, can be purchased for $151 and entitle each fan to getting two items autographed and one picture taken with Busch.
Passes to the “Rowdy Roundup” can be purchased at RowdyBusch.com or at the 5 Flags Speedway ticket office. Passes to the meet and greet with Busch do not include admission to the race. Race tickets are required and need to be purchased separately from 5 Flags Speedway.
The 50th Annual Snowball Derby will kick off on Wednesday, November 29 with racing for the first time in event history on a Wednesday night. The Pure Stock division will be in action for a 50-lap feature prior to the annual Green Flag Pit Party and all-important qualifying draw for Late Model drivers.
Late Models will hit the track for the first time on Thursday, November 30 prior to 50-lap features for the Sportsman and Outlaw Stock divisions later that night.
Friday, December 1 is the most intense day in all of short track racing. It’s qualifying day for the Snowball Derby. Also on Friday night, the Modifieds will get their spotlight as they do battle for 75 laps to crown their Snowball Derby champion.
Saturday, December 2 is Allen Turner Snowflake 100 race day. Qualifying for the Snowflake 100 will begin at 2 p.m. CT. A 50-lap last chance race for the Snowflake 100 will immediately follow qualifying. The 50-lap last chance race for the Snowball Derby will also be held on Saturday evening at the conclusion of the last chance race for the Snowflake 100.
The green flag for the Allen Turner Snowflake 100 will wave at 7 p.m. Also on Saturday night, the Pro Trucks will race for 50 laps to decide who takes their Snowball Derby victory.
Sunday, December 3 is the biggest day of the year in short track racing. It’s race day for the 50th Annual Snowball Derby. Pre-race festivities will begin at Noon CT. The class photo for the 50th Annual Snowball Derby will be taken on the frontstretch at 12:30. Driver introductions will follow at 1:15 p.m. The green flag for the 50th Annual Snowball Derby will wave at 2 p.m.
More information on the 50th Annual Snowball Derby can be found by visiting www.snowballderby.com and www.5flagsspeedway.com.
-51 Sports / Snowball Derby Press Release