Busch was caught up in a 10-car crash near the end of the frontstretch on Lap 112 of the 120-lap event, his Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota careening head-on into a section of infield wall that had no SAFER barrier.
After the crash, Busch was transported directly to Halifax Health Medical Center of Daytona Beach where it was determined he suffered a compound fracture of the right lower leg. Additionally, Busch suffered a mid-foot fracture of his left foot in the accident. His injuries will sideline him for an undetermined period of time, JGR officials announced Saturday night.
As of 9:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, Busch was undergoing surgery on his right leg. Two-time Camping World Truck Series champion Matt Crafton will serve as the interim driver for Busch's No. 18 Toyota during Sunday's 57th Daytona 500. An interim driver has not been determined for the following race on March 1 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, or any future races.
Busch's car hit a portion of the wall that was not covered in the protective SAFER barrier. NASCAR drivers criticized the track on Twitter for not having the safety barriers on the concrete wall.
"Man I hope (at)KyleBusch is alright... It's beyond me why we don't have soft walls everywhere," six-time champion Jimmie Johnson tweeted.
"I'm genuinely furious right now. Any wall in any of the top 3 series without safer barriers is INEXCUSABLE. It's 2015," wrote Regan Smith.
Xfinity Series driver Ty Dillon said after the race no driver should have any "crazy, bad" injuries because a track did not have additional SAFER barriers.
At 8:15 p.m. ET, Daytona International Speedway president Joie Chitwood III and NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer Steve O'Donnell met with the media and confirmed steps will be taken to rectify the problem.
"The Daytona International Speedway did not live up to its responsibility today," said Chitwood. "We should have had a SAFER barrier there, and we did not. We're going to fix that. We're going to fix that right now."
Track workers began installing tire packs along the section of wall hit by Busch Saturday evening, and Chitwood vowed to go further to cover "every inch" of the speedway with SAFER barriers.
20-21 February, 2015, Daytona Beach, Florida USA The car of Kyle Busch, Monster Energy Toyota Camry comes to a rest against the turn 1 inside wall after crashing in the closing laps.
"This is not going to happen again," he said. "We're going to live up to our responsibility. We're going to fix this, and it starts right now."
O'Donnell echoed Chitwood's comments.
"What happened tonight should not have happened,"said O'Donnell. "That's on us we're going to fix it and we're going to fix it immediately. ... I think we all know racing is an inherently dangerous sport, but our priority is safety and we'll continue to put things in place to make this sport as safe as possible."