Defending champ moves to fill Wallace's spot

Defending NASCAR Nextel Cup champ Kurt Busch will have a new home next season.


Busch will leave Roush Racing and join Penske Racing in 2006, according to ESPN's Mike Massaro. Busch replaces Rusty Wallace, who is retiring from the Penske team.

Busch signed a multiyear contract back in August to drive for Penske starting in 2007, and asked to be let out of his deal with Roush. At that time, team owner Jack Roush said he would consider releasing Busch, citing "the interests of our sponsors and the commitments we've made to our sponsors and to our people within the organization."

Jamie McMurray, who has raced this season for Chip Ganassi Racing, will take Busch's place on the Roush team, according to Massaro.

Busch is currently ninth in the Chase for the Championship; Wallace is eighth. But Busch has three wins this season; Wallace none.

McMurray is 11th in the current Nextel Cup standings.

The Associated Press contributed to this report