Kurt Busch began his attempt at auto racing's doubleheader Sunday with a sixth-place finish at the Indianapolis 500 but was unable to become the second driver to complete it when his engine failed during the Coca-Cola 600 in Charlotte, N.C.
Busch fell about 200 miles short of completing the 1,100 miles of racing, known as "The Double," when his engine blew more than a third of the way through the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
“It acted like it swallowed three cylinders all at once,” Busch said of his engine failure. “It's kind of a shame. It symbolizes how tough it has been for the team. I thought it was great racing in traffic. The feel of the stock car right after driving the IndyCar is a feeling I'll never forget.
“Those things happen in motor sports. It was a good battle, though. I was hoping to do 1,100 miles today. I can't let what happened here dampen the mood of what happened in Indianapolis.”
Busch was the fourth driver to attempt the IndyCar/NASCAR double. The last driver to attempt it was Robby Gordon in 2004; the first was John Andretti in 1994.
The only driver to complete both races is Tony Stewart, who took sixth in the Indy 500 and third in the NASCAR race in 2001.
Busch's plan fell into place when the Indy 500 was completed with only a few crashes to delay the race. He hopped on a helicopter out of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and then got on a plane bound for Charlotte.
Patricia Driscoll, Busch's girlfriend, posted a photo on her Twitter page of Busch taking a nap alongsid her son while receiving fluids in preparation for the Coca-Cola 600.
Driscoll's latest tweet said, "A fast flight between races for #DoubleOutlaw on the Cessna Citation X." She included a photo of Busch lacing up his shoes while already in his driver's suit.
“It was an incredible journey to sniff the lead of the Indy 500,” Busch said.
“My hands are a little sore. My feet are a little sore, just from working it. Overall, I can stand here with a smile knowing that I gave it my all for six months trying to get to this point.”Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times