Kyle Busch has four NASCAR wins as the first half of the season speeds toward its conclusion.

On Sunday, Busch won for the third time in the NASCAR Cup Series with Richard Childress Racing. It was a dominating performance from the pole, the No. 8 Chevrolet not only faster in a straight line but also stronger through the corners at World Wide Technology Raceway. Outside of Cup, he also won in L as Vegas in early March when he made his first Craftsman Truck Series start of the season.

There are a lot of drivers who would gladly take four wins. But if it were up to Busch, that would only be the tip of the iceberg if he were still allowed to race as much as he wanted to.

“Yeah, (I) definitely miss being able to run as much as I want to a lot,” Busch said recently.

It’s been seven years since NASCAR instituted limitations on Cup Series drivers running in the other two national series. Those with more than five years of full-time experience were limited to 10 races in the Xfinity Series and seven races in the Craftsman Truck Series going into the 2017 season. They were also not permitted to run in the playoff races.

NASCAR said the guidelines were to “elevate the stature of future stars” while still competing against the sport’s best from the Cup Series. Some – like Busch – would argue it was ‘ the Kyle Busch rule’ to limit the wins being taken away from series regulars.

A year later after its introduction, the rule was tightened further to seven Xfinity Series events and five Truck Series races. And in addition to not being allowed to enter a playoff race, a Cup Series driver could not run the regular season finale, either.

Busch ran his 10 allowed Xfinity Series races in 2017, winning five times. He won once in his seven starts in 2018, and four times in his seven starts in 2019. It was more of the same in the Truck Series, with three wins in seven starts in 2017, two wins out of five starts in 2018, and then going an incredible five-for-five in 2019.

In 2020, the rule got even tighter. Cup Series drivers with three – down from five – years of experience are limited to five races in both the Xfinity Series sand Craftsman Truck Series. In addition to the regular season finale and playoff races, they are also not allowed to run in specialty events: the Dash 4 Cash (Xfinity) and the Triple Truck Challenge (Truck).

“I would love to have way more Truck races, especially,” Busch continued. “I thought we started out strong and we were going to have a good year with winning at Las Vegas with the KBM Chevrolets, but unfortunately, we’ve been terrible since. We’re missing something somewhere, and we’re trying to figure out why and what. We have an idea, but we haven’t necessarily conquered it yet.

“That would be one that I would really like; to get back into would be the Truck Series and running my own stuff a little bit more; having some more races to build the program and make sure that we are where we need to be with our younger drivers (who are) not necessarily having that experience to be able to dictate and tell exactly what’s wrong with our vehicle dynamic and stuff like that.”

Busch has already made four of his five allowed starts in the Craftsman Truck Series, where he has 63 career wins. Busch is splitting time in the No. 51 with Jack Wood, who is winless with two top-five finishes in five starts. Chase Purdy, who drives the No. 4 full-time, is also winless with six top-10 finishes through the first 12 races.

The winningest driver in Xfinity Series history and 2009 champion, Busch, has been shut out through two starts. He went five-for-five in his 2021 starts.

“The Xfinity (Series) side, I could take it or I could leave it,” Busch said. “I enjoy racing anything as much as I can. Maybe because I haven’t done them as much lately, the triple (header) in (Las) Vegas was a little bit much. But if you’re back to doing them again more periodically, your body gets used to it. That’s how I was early on when I first started doing triples. It was hard, and then I got used to it, and then it was easy. Now you’re kind of back out of it, so it’s no different than a workout regimen. You just have to get back in.”

Busch became the first driver to sweep all three NASCAR national series races on a single weekend in 2010 at Bristol Motor Speedway. It was a feat he repeated in 2017 at the same racetrack. He remains the only driver in NASCAR to have accomplished a triple-win weekend.

Busch made an early career of running two or all three races in a weekend. If it weren’t for the rules, he would likely still be doing so because racing is an addiction Busch will never quit.

But if he can’t get it in NASCAR, Busch has spent the last few years finding other racing avenues to keep himself busy.

“I have to, what other choices do I have?” Busch laughed.

Touche. Although it’s come in an unlikely way. Busch is becoming a regular on dirt and, naturally, is quite competitive in the arena. Last season, he ran a dirt late model in an event set up by Kyle Larson, but mostly, Busch has been running micro sprint cars. Doing so not only keeps the racing itch scratched but also lets Busch compete with or against his son Brexton.

“That’s just kind of it, right?” said Busch. “Like Larson, I think he’s going to run 100 shows this year, and that’s just insane. I think I’m only going to be (doing) about 20. But the main reason,why I do what I do on the dirt side is just with Brexton. He gets to go run his go-kart stuff or his junior sprint stuff, and I’ll run the micros. We’ll run on the same night, so we’ll be together.”

And it’s not just local to North Carolina. Brexton Busch has been racing all across the country, and Kyle Busch does, too. Over the weekend, Busch ran his NASCAR Cup Series car in St. Louis, but there were also dirt events Thursday (Tri-Cities), Friday (Doe Run), and Saturday (Wayne County) where he and Brexton both entered.

Brexton won his event, Junior Sprints, at Doe Run Raceway. Busch won his heat race and the outlaw winged micro race.

A day later, Busch won the pole for the Cup Series race. Then capped the weekend off with his 63rd career win.

It’s been seven years since NASCAR changed its driver eligibility, and for Busch, time hasn’t made him feel any better. While he’s not as fulfilled as he’d like to be in NASCAR, Busch takes what he can – now with a side of dirt. The one thing that hasn’t changed, though, is Busch does indeed just keep winning.