Kurt Busch won’t race in the 100th Indianapolis 500

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With younger brother Kyle Busch apparently open to the idea of running the Indianapolis 500, Kurt Busch has confirmed he won’t return for the race’s 100th edition this season.

The 2004 Sprint Cup champion, who finished sixth as a rookie in the 2014 Indy 500, announced in a statement on his website that he won’t return. The Stewart-Haas Racing driver explained:

After seriously contemplating making another run at “The Double”, and in response to the many questions I receive on the subject as the Month of May approaches, I wanted to state that I will not be participating in this year’s 100th running of the Indianapolis 500. I must say this was not an easy decision and it does not in any way reflect upon my desire to compete again in one of the world’s greatest races; it is based solely on a need to maintain the focus and momentum we have built early in this NASCAR season with our #41 Stewart-Haas Racing, Haas Automation/Monster Energy Chevy team – hopefully all the way to Homestead and the championship weekend.

My experience with Andretti Autosport and its drivers was so very positive and the way in which the IndyCar fans and media welcomed me, it is undoubtedly one of the highlights of my career both personally and professionally. Fortunately, Michael and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway have left the door open for a future run, and perhaps one day I will take them up on that, it just won’t be this year.

Busch was the first driver to compete in both the Indy 500 and Coca-Cola 600 on the same day since Robby Gordon in 2003, and he joined Gordon, Tony Stewart and John Andretti as those who have accomplished the feat.

Busch ran two years ago for Andretti Autosport, and his former car owner and a ex-teammate saluted him Wednesday on Twitter.

In a tweet Sunday night, Kyle Busch said he’d consider running the Indy 500 now that he has won a title in NASCAR’s premier series.