The colorful paint scheme was inspired by the No. 26 Wonder race car that appeared in the motion picture – Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.
“It’s shake and bake time,” said Busch, repeating the catch phrase from the 2006 movie, which starred Will Ferrell as Ricky Bobby.
The sponsorship is part of the reintroduction of the Wonder brand, which had been off the market since the bankruptcy of its former owner late last year. Flowers Foods, a leading producer and marketer of packaged bakery foods in the U.S., acquired the Wonder brand in July 2013.
Busch, who is seventh in driver points with five races remaining in the Chase playoffs, is hoping the Wonder car will give him that boost of luck which is vitally needed at NASCAR’s biggest track (2.66-mile oval).
“We need something to change our luck after our car went airborne at the Talladega spring race,” said Busch. “I am a fan of the Talladega Nights movie and it truly excites me to drive the Wonder car. It carries a special feeling with two American icons coming together – Wonder bread and NASCAR – at one of America’s legendary racetracks.”
At the May Talladega race, Busch was running fifth with six laps remaining in regulation when his Furniture Row Chevrolet got clipped and went airborne.
“We went from having an excellent chance of winning to a 30th-place finish in a split second,” explained Busch. “It’s so difficult to predict Talladega. You can ride around in the back, charge up front all day and either way your day can end with your car on the (wrecker’s) hook, like our car did the last time at Talladega.”
Busch added, “You just hope to have Lady Luck guide you to a top-10 finish. Restrictor-plate races have turned into this pattern that is hard to have any type of strength over any other team. It just comes down to being in the right place at the right time.”
Though he sits seventh in points with a 10.8 finishing average in the five Chase races Busch says the team needs to make a big rebound after a disappointing performance last week in Charlotte.
“We just haven’t been as consistent as is needed in the Chase,” noted Busch. “The runner-up at Kansas and fourth at Chicago were strong finishes. But we didn’t cut it at New Hampshire (13th), Dover (21st) and Charlotte (14th). We need to make a stronger statement in the final five races.”
Sunday’s Camping World RV Sales 500 will mark Busch’s 26th Cup start at Talladega. His Talladega record includes six top-fives, 13 top-10s and 143 laps led. According to NASCAR’s statistical bureau he has a fifth-best driver rating of 86.8 and ranks second for most green-flag passes (5,819).