Kurt Busch to Attempt The Indianapolis-Charlotte Double
posted by Phil Allaway
Tuesday March 4, 2014
Andretti Autosport announced this morning that Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet in the Sprint Cup Series, will attempt the Indianapolis 500 in a fifth entry for the IndyCar Series team. Once the Indianapolis 500 is completed, Busch will fly from Indianapolis to Charlotte, jump in his No. 41 Chevrolet and compete in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Busch considers the opportunity to do the double as an old-school throwback moment.
“This is really to challenge myself within motorsports,” Busch said in Andretti Autosport’s press release. “Perhaps I am a bit of an old-school racer; a throwback, I guess. I enjoyed the era of drivers racing different cars and testing themselves in other series. It is tough to do now for a variety of factors, but when the opportunity is there, I want to do it. While NASCAR is my home, I have been fortunate to compete in Pro Stock on the NHRA circuit a number of years ago and test a V8 Supercar. This opportunity was a talk with Michael [Andretti] over dinner one night, a “What if,” and now it’s becoming a reality for me to drive in the Indy 500 with Andretti Autosport. It’s literally a dream come true. To go to the famous Brickyard with the iconic Andretti name, it doesn’t get much cooler or better than that.”
Busch will be doing the Indianapolis-Charlotte double as a Memorial Day mission to men and women serving in the U.S. Military via the Armed Forces Foundation. Fans can contribute to the cause by texting AFF to 50555 to donate $10.
Busch, who has never raced an IndyCar, passed Rookie Orientation at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway last year during a test session. At the time, Busch was more or less testing the Dallara DW12 for fun.
Busch will be the fourth driver to attempt the Indianapolis-Charlotte double. John Andretti was the first driver to attempt it in 1994. After finishing four laps down in tenth in Indianapolis, Andretti crashed and had engine problems in the 600. Robby Gordon has attempted the double five times, most recently in 2004. However, Gordon failed to make it to Charlotte on time and did not start the 600 in 2000 (P.J. Jones started Gordon’s No. 13 Ford in that instance). Finally, Tony Stewart has attempted the double twice (most recently in 2001) and is the only driver to ever complete all 1100 miles. Neither of the three drivers has won either leg of the double. The best finishes are Stewart and Gordon’s sixth-place finishes at the Indianapolis 500 (although Gordon’s came in 2000, the year he didn’t make it to Charlotte in time to start the Coca-Cola 600), and Stewart’s fourth-place finish in the 2001 Coca-Cola 600.
Danica Patrick, Justin Allgaier Talk About Phoenix Incident
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Tuesday March 4, 2014
A disappointing start to the year for Danica Patrick won’t include continued conflict. Patrick met with rookie Justin Allgaier Sunday, shortly after the Phoenix Cup race after a wreck ruined both drivers’ days. Patrick, who was critical of the No. 51 car on the radio, claiming Allgaier was “driving all over the track” appeared receptive to a conversation that quickly settled differences over what will be a long season.
“She was just upset because she got involved in the crash that we had,’’ said Allgaier to the Motor Racing Network. “She says she’s been through this and that she felt like I needed to settle down at that point. I explained my position on why everything happened. I think she understood where I was coming from. It doesn’t fix either one of our racecars. It doesn’t fix either one of our days. Unfortunately, we were both having pretty decent days.’’
Allgaier wound up 30th due to the incident while Patrick was 36th. The incident, which was caused by Allgaier’s spin also involved the No. 32 team and Travis Kvapil, which wound up 38th after sustaining heavy damage.
Camping World Close to Extending Title Sponsorship of NCWTS
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Tuesday March 4, 2014
Marcus Lemonis, CEO of Camping World, Grand Marshal of Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway, and star of CNBC’s “The Profit,” made the announcement over the weekend that the retailer is very close to announcing a deal that would continue its title sponsorship of NASCAR’s Truck Series. The original agreement with NASCAR is scheduled to conclude after the 2015 season.
According to the sanctioning body, no formal contract has been signed, but “the agreement between the two parties has proven to be a beneficial one.”
“In about a month, we’ll be announcing a significant extension to that contract. It’s been great for us,” said Camping World’s Lemonis in a statement. “The NASCAR relationship has worked well for Camping World. When we started, we had 35 stores. Now, we’re up to 120 stores. As we travel the country and we meet new customers in stores, they always are very appreciative of our relationship with NASCAR. It’s been good.”
Gaining a long-term commitment from Camping World to sponsor the Truck Series would be a relief for NASCAR, which is set to lose Nationwide Insurance as title sponsor for the NASCAR Nationwide Series at the end of the 2014 season. The sponsorship of the Cup Series by Sprint runs through 2016.
The NCWTS is back in action on March 29th at 2:30 PM (ET) when the trucks visit Martinsville Speedway in the Kroger 250, which can be seen on Fox Sports 1. Ratings for the season opener were up 11 percent.
Harvick Takes Win At Phoenix In Second Race With New Team
posted by Justin Tucker
Tuesday March 4, 2014
Phoenix International Raceway has become Kevin Harvick’s home away from home. Sunday Afternoon was no exception as Harvick charged to the front early and would dominate for much of the day, leading 224 of the scheduled 312 laps to record his record fifth win on the one mile oval and his third win in the last four races at Phoenix.
Harvick, coming off of a disappointing Speedweeks which was capped by a last lap crash in the Daytona 500 in his debut with Stewart-Haas Racing, set the tone on Saturday by winning both practices while having the best 5 and 10-lap averages in the first practice of the day on Saturday. On Sunday, Harvick and his No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet was nothing short of flawless as he was able to hold Dale Earnhardt, Jr. by .489 seconds after a late race restart to claim his 24th career Sprint Cup Series victory.
“Man, this is awesome,” Harvick said after his dominant victory on Sunday. “Man, this just solidifies so many things and so many decisions. It’s been so much work with all the time and effort that these guys (the crew) have put in—but what a race car.”
Stewart Haas Racing co-owner Gene Haas shared in Harvick’s excitement after the race.
“It took long enough,” Haas joked. “This is phenomenal. I think there was a lot of skepticism last year about what myself and Tony (Stewart) what we were up to, was there a lot of madness to this. Quite frankly, it’s a great team, there’s a lot of synergy at the shop, people working together. I don’t know what we did, but I think we put together a great organization.”
Daytona 500 winner Dale Earnhardt, Jr. continued his hot start to the 2014 season. Earnhardt Jr. would finish second on Sunday, marking his seventh consecutive top 10 finish since the end of the 2013 season. Earnhardt Jr. was pleased with the effort after a coast-to-coast whirlwind week after winning his second Daytona 500 and also gave great praise to the efforts of Harvick and the No. 4 team.
“I’ve got to congratulate Kevin. Those guys were two-tenths faster than everyone all weekend in practice. They were just phenomenal,” Earnhardt said. “To be able to run with them all day was a big confidence builder for us.”
Joining Harvick and Earnhardt in the top 5 of The Profit on CNBC 500K were Brad Keselowski with his second consecutive top 3 run of 2014 in third. Keselowski’s Team Penske teammate Joey Logano would finish fourth, and Jeff Gordon would come home fifth in his No. 24 Pepsi Max Chevrolet.
Jimmie Johnson finished in sixth, followed by Ryan Newman with a nice rebound after Daytona in seventh. Carl Edwards would carry the banner for Roush Fenway Racing by finishing eighth, Kyle Busch was ninth, and Jamie McMurray would finish tenth.
A look at the Profit on CNBC 500K by the numbers. There were 14 lead changes among eight different drivers, there were eight cautions for 39 laps which slowed the race pace to 109.229 MPH.
Next Sunday, the Sprint Cup Series heads to Sin City and the Las Vegas Motor
Starting Lineup: The Profit On CNBC 500K
posted by Thomas Bowles
Saturday March 1, 2014
Drivers in RED (i) are those ineligible to collect Sprint Cup points
Daytona 500 TV Ratings Down
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Wednesday February 26, 2014
What was the longest weather delay in Daytona 500 history turned out to bring NASCAR lower ratings and TV viewership Sunday night than expected. According to a report Monday from FOX Sports, the 56th running of the Daytona 500 airing at 8 PM (ET) posted a 5.6/10 national household rating/share which averaged 9.3 million viewers. That’s down 44 percent from last year’s 9.9, easily making it the least-watched Daytona 500 of all-time.
Due to the six-hour, twenty-two minute rain delay in Daytona, the race was up against the primetime coverage of the Winter Olympics Closing Ceremony from Sochi, Russia on NBC (15.25 million viewers). FOX also reported that 69% of the pre-rain delay viewers of the race, which began at 1 PM (ET) kept tuning in.
In comparison, the 2013 Daytona 500 on FOX was the most-watched race in five years, posting a 9.9/22 rating/share, commanding 16.7 million viewers. The Daytona 500 in 2012, the first to ever be run on a Monday and in the primetime slot did a 7.7/13 overnight rating/share which resulted in 13.67 million households viewing the race according to Nielsen TV ratings data.
Earnhardt, Jr. Claims Second Daytona 500 Victory
posted by Justin Tucker
Wednesday February 26, 2014
Ten years is a long time. For Dale Earnhardt, Jr., it felt like an eternity. NASCAR’s Most Popular Driver endured many near misses and close calls at the Daytona 500 since his only win in the Great American Race in 2004. Earnhardt had finished second in two of his last three Daytona 500s coming into Sunday’s race. He was also riding the tail of a 55-race winless streak, dating back to Michigan in 2012.
However nothing would stop Dale Jr. on Sunday, not even a 6 hour and 22 minute rain delay from capturing his second Daytona 500 win. Earnhardt Jr. led a race-high 54 laps on the evening and used some timely drafting help from teammates Jimmie Johnson and, on the final restart, Jeff Gordon to separate from the pack and secure the victory.
“Winning this race is the greatest feeling that you could feel in this sport besides accepting the trophy for the championship,” said a jubilant Earnhardt after pulling into Victory Lane. “We could fight off battle after battle. We got a little help at the end there from Jeff to get away on the restart. This is amazing. I can’t believe this is happening. I never take this for granted, man because it doesn’t happen twice, let alone once.”
Aside from the race itself the big story of the race was the 6 hour and 22 minute red flag, which threatened to move the race to Monday evening (had the race been postponed, FOX Sports’ Chris Myers had tweeted that the race would resume at 5:00pm EST). However, Mother Nature would cooperate and would allow the race to be run under different conditions from which they practiced this week. Once the race resumed, the intensity picked up from the changing track conditions. This allowed the pack to race side-by-side and at times 3-wide up to seven rows deep.
Joining Earnhardt Jr. in the top 5 for the 2014 Daytona 500 were: Denny Hamlin who closed out a spectacular Speedweeks in second, Brad Keselowski in third, Jeff Gordon in fourth, and Jimmie Johnson who overcome two wrecks leading up to the 500 in fifth.
Rounding out the top 10 in the Daytona 500 were Matt Kenseth in sixth, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. in seventh and Greg Biffle would bring his No. 16 Ford home in eighth. Austin Dillon would come home ninth in his first Cup Series race in the iconic No. 3 for Richard Childress Racing, while Casey Mears would round out the top 10.
A couple of major contenders for the Daytona 500 win would see their hopes dashed early on as Martin Truex, Jr. would blow up just 30 laps into the race, relegating him to a 43rd-place finish in his debut for Furniture Row Racing. Crew chief Todd Berrier was already in Nashville for a test session before the race was even over. Kyle Busch, meanwhile would have a pit road violation just before halfway and would spend much of the race battling back from that mistake. Busch would eventually finish 19th after leading 19 laps.
Danica Patrick would also be bit by bad luck as she was caught up in a multi-car wreck on lap 145. Patrick would lead her second consecutive Daytona 500, but wouldn’t have the finish to show for it finishing 40th. Tony Stewart would encounter a frustrating evening as well, with a fuel pickup problem derailing his quest for his first Daytona 500 win. Stewart would finish 35th.
A look at the Daytona 500 by the numbers. There were 42 lead changes among 18 drivers, while seven cautions for 39 laps would slow the race pace to 145.290 MPH.
Next week, the Sprint Cup Series heads to the “diamond in the desert,” Phoenix International Raceway for The Profit on CNBC 500K. The Green flag is scheduled for 3:15pm EST.
Nationwide Series Post-Race Quotes: Drive4COPD 300
posted by Thomas Bowles
Tuesday February 25, 2014
Frontstretch Interviews – Courtesy Mike Neff
ELLIOTT SADLER – FINISHED 4th
Thoughts on the race?
It’s definitely a lot different racing than what we’re used to.
Comfortable with it?
Yeah, it’s just different. You’re worried about what you’re doing, but you’re also worried about what everyone else is doing and they’re not doing more than you’re doing. Physically pushing a guy is way better than just riding so you just gotta time it right and push it to the edge.
Happy to start the year with a top 5?
Yeah. Hell, that was the worst we ran all day, I think. I have no idea how they put the 3 car in front of us on that last restart. I hadn’t seen the 3 car hardly all day. When they put us from fifth to sixth, on the outside line, it just really boxed us in. I would have really restarted behind my teammate and given him a good push to the front. Anyways, it is what it is; we’ll take it and move on.
Looked like you were up front all day.
The guys did a good job. We had a fast race car. Great pit stops, just really proud of these guys. The car’s in one piece and we can take it to Talladega now. Great job by my guys. A lot of effort came into coming down here to Daytona and giving ourselves a shot to win. We had that chance to be up front and make some things happen. Fifth is not what we want, but we’ll take it and move on.
Bumping vs Pushing?
It’s way harder. You don’t want to lay on the guy in front of you, so it’s tough racing. A lot different than what we’re used to, ‘cause you gotta go. You gotta drag the brake too ‘cause you don’t want to hit the guys and you don’t want to stay on him. It’s a lot harder mentally than what we’ve done in the past.
Car was strong all day. Pushing vs. Bumping, is that harder to do than just getting on somebody and pushing them?
Yeah, it is a little bit. When you bump ‘em, you jar ‘em, it kinda jacks ‘em a little bit. It’s a little more abrupt, obviously. I thought it was OK there at the end. It was certainly fun and hopefully entertaining. But a little bit of a struggle in the early part of the race and the midpart of the race to see a good race. And that’s unfortunate for the fans. You can’t do that the whole race, you can’t tear up your stuff, knock your grill in, overheat your motor, all that stuff so there’s no sense in doing all that until you get down to the last lap. The 7 and the 6, they did a good job. Man, the 7 really held the 22 and I tight on the bottom. I was rubbing his door and hitting the apron at the same time, no room whatsoever. So it was good; wish we were the ones who could have won but a lot better now than what we were last year.
Going home in one piece makes it a lot better, right?
Yeah. My back feels good. My foot feels good. Past years here, I’ve been going home with pain so I’m alright.
Connect with Mike!
2014 Truck Series Post-Race Quotes: Daytona (Exclusives)
posted by Thomas Bowles
Saturday February 22, 2014
When you’re on the outside like that, how frustrating is it?
It’s so hard. Timothy Peters has won here. Kyle Busch has won everywhere. Ron Hornaday has been running Trucks forever, probably before I was even born. I was surrounded by veterans there, and like I told them I don’t have a rookie stripe but I’m a rookie. This is only my fourth Truck race ever, my fourth superspeedway race, and man, I figured out when the 17 got up in front of me, I pushed him. And as soon as I pushed him, he took off. And I went with him. And I just kept doing it, and before I knew it, he was leading. And I saw Ron in my mirror, backed up to him, and if it wasn’t for him, I don’t know what would have happened. I gotta thank him big time for that. That was a true teammate move right there. I really appreciate that. He just bounced off me and we got to the front. I tried my hardest to sidedraft Kyle. I was probably touching his door.
Top 5 in the No. 30 truck. This deal come together at the last minute, but you had a heck of a truck. Tell us about your night.
Yeah, I’ve got to thank Turner Scott Motorsports. The guys worked so hard on this Rheem Comfort Products Chevrolet. Exciting! Just got hung up on the outside and had to wait for my teammate there to catch up. And then he got to the bottom, so… I got the old 32 and started pushing ol’ Ryan to the front. So, it’s not bad. We’ll take it. You just don’t want to step over that boundary. You don’t know how far to push and shove. We bumped about six times down the straightaway without latching onto them. Hopefully, that was OK and we came home with a top 5.
Connect with Mike!
2014 Budweiser Duels Post Race Quotes
posted by Matt Stallknecht
Friday February 21, 2014
BUDWEISER DUELS POST-RACE QUOTES
They’re saying the wheel bearing burned up in it. I don’t know what caused it, they’re taking it all apart to figure out what the heck happened. Something abnormal that’s for sure I don’t think I’ve ever had that happen at all. Hopefully, we made the race and hopefully we can fix the problem before Sunday.
WHAT WAS THAT LOUD BOOM ONCE YOU TURNED INTO THE GARAGE?
Loud pop was a tire… thankfully, it popped, hopefully it didn’t hurt anybody. All the heat created in the left front that popped was pretty weird.
REALLY GOOD RUN. WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT?
Yeah, it was good. We have a car we can work with for the 500. Got a good starting spot, so we’re going to rest easy, fluff and buff our car for a couple of days and get ready for Sunday.
ANY DIFFERENCE ON WHETHER THE TOP OR BOTTOM LANE WORKED?
Yeah, I was just moving around, trying to stay with the flow. For me, this car works on all parts of the racetrack. So I’m pretty happy with it.
DALE EARNHARDT, JR.
GOT SHUFFLED BACK, AFTER PIT STOPS AND THEN COULDN’T GET BACK UP TO THE FRONT. WHY?
Nah, we were just sitting there waiting until the last few laps to make a move. You didn’t want to pull down and get sent to the back. Seen a couple of guys get sent to the back really quick so we were just kind of waiting for the end. I felt like we had a good situation there with Ambrose behind us — we had a good run off Turn 2 and I went. It was the last lap, time to go do something, nobody went with us but hopefully Sunday is a different story.
We got a great car. We don’t have to work hard. We learned, we got a good race car. Got a car in one piece, ready to go so we’ll try and get through the next couple of practices, deliver it to the starting group this Sunday and we’ll be real happy.
YOU’RE IN THE DAYTONA 500!
Yeah, it’s pretty awesome. This Whitetail Chevrolet was so fast that I knew all I had to do was stick it behind smart, intelligent drafters and we could have a good finish. That’s what we did in the Duels and I’m excited. I’m excited to go do some stuff with the Nationwide car and have some more practice with this. But to know that we’re locked in the Daytona 500’s pretty cool.
YOU WERE OBVIOUSLY IN FRONT OF THAT MELEE AT THE END. WHEN YOU WERE UP FRONT THERE IN THE BEGINNING, WERE YOU HOPING TO JUST STAY IN LINE AND LET YOU FINISH TOP 5?
I was pretty content to ride and luckily I knew a lot of people around us were. It was nice to have a little calm and not really have to be racing hard the whole time. I knew that the pit stop was going to shake everything up and that’s exactly what happened. Fell back a little bit there but made the right moves at the end to get a good finish.
HOW STRONG ARE THESE RCR CARS?
They’re very strong! They definitely have the capabilities to be winning one of these races.
YOU’RE IN THE TOP 5 FOR YOUR HEAT IN THE DAYTONA 500. YOUR PRIMARY CAR IS SITTING RIGHT IN THE GARAGE, KIND OF WADDED UP. DID YOU THINK THIS ONE HAD IT IN IT?
Yeah, it’s a brand new car also. It’s just not quite as good as the primary but still a damned good car. I’m just proud of everybody at RCR for building such fast race cars. All of our cars have been fast, ECR motor’s been strong, even our affiliate teams have been qualifying really good and racing good. So… excited about 2014! It’s going to be a good year.
WELL MAN, YOU STARTED IN THE BACK BUT WORKED YOUR WAY TO THE FRONT WHEN IT COUNTED MOST. WERE YOU JUST BIDING YOUR TIME THROUGHOUT THE RACE?
Eh, you never know if you’re going to get back up there or not. We had to start at the back, we had to make a run early and see what we could do. We drove right to 10th, or something like that and then it got stagnant. We tried to make something happen, and went to the back again. Drove back up to the front. Again, just really proud of my guys. Matt Kruder did a hell of a job on that pit stop getting just enough gas in to gain some spots there.
RCR CARS SEEM PRETTY DARNED STRONG. DO YOU THINK THE RCR CARS HAVE SOMETHING FOR THEM ON SUNDAY — ESPECIALLY THE THREE JOE GIBBS RACING CARS THAT SEEM TO BE THE CLASS OF THE FIELD RIGHT NOW?
Oh yeah. The 20 car was extremely fast. The 11 didn’t qualify that good, but he’s a good drafter. I think he won. We definitely have something for him.
Check in with Matt and Jay on their site at CareyandCoffey.com.
So here’s a question for Darrell Waltrip and Co.
Where, exactly, was the “new” Kyle Busch? Did he have this weekend off? Because he sure as hell wasn’t in Darlington, South Carolina. Because whoever was wheeling the No. 18 Toyota this Saturday night displayed not a shred of anything resembling guts, sincerity, or maturity.
The events of lap 364 of the Southern 500 were captured to crystal clarity by FOX’s broadcast crew. Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick were battling hard for a spot in the top 10. Harvick made contact with Busch’s rear end entering turn 4 while making a crossover move. As the two were side by side entering turn 4, Clint Bowyer also entered the fray, creating a three-wide situation that proved too much for Harvick’s No. 29 to handle; Harvick corrected down the track and sent his teammate headfirst into the frontstretch’s interior retaining wall.
From there, Harvick visibly moved down the track to get off of Busch’s Toyota. Busch, however, refused to let Harvick get away, turning a hard left down the frontstretch that hooked the No. 29 and sent it into the fence. Busch would finish the melee 11th, Harvick a distant 17th, disappointing results for two drivers that were contending through the long night for the win.
Frankly, there’s not a case to be made against Busch for choosing to wreck Harvick. Harvick did initiate the contact that the two drivers engaged in for the better part of a quarter-lap in the closing stretch. And what’s more, Harvick is one of the very few drivers in any level of NASCAR that Busch actually owed one. Flashback to Homestead last November, where after nearly 400 miles of Busch playing the good teammate, making life a living hell for both Kevin Harvick and Jimmie Johnson as he tried to assist Denny Hamlin’s championship bid, Happy bowled all over Busch down the frontstretch to end the No. 18’s season early (he would later tell Hamlin “I parked yours [teammate].”)
Had the events of the evening ended at that, Busch would for the first time in his career actually be left holding the high ground. Eye for an eye, Busch six months later did exactly to Harvick what he had done to him at Homestead.
But what happened next ended any chance the Shrub would have at playing that role. It went beyond that, burning the facade that is the newfound maturity of Kyle Busch and desecrating the ashes.
A visibly angry Harvick pulled up right alongside Busch’s machine coming to pit road after the race; Busch tried to avoid the situation, pulling off pit road and back to the frontstretch. Harvick followed. Eventually, Busch returned to pit road, and Harvick stopped his car in front. Once Harvick had exited his car, Busch did the unthinkable; he ran into the back of Harvick’s parked car on pit road, sending the No. 29 into the pit wall with Harvick’s crew members watching.
Busch proceeded to drive his own car to the No. 18 hauler, parking the machine and later emerging to speak to FOX regarding the incident. And here, the brat side of Kyle Busch was on display for race fans coast to coast to see. He described Kevin Harvick’s racing hard in the late going as “unacceptable.” He never once acknowledged that, as the tapes clearly showed, that he had delivered payback, justified or not. And he blew off being called to the NASCAR hauler as “cool,” bearing more resemblance to a cocky high schooler trying to impress a gaggle of freshman by blowing off the man. With a slimy smile on his face to boot.
None of this is to say that Kevin Harvick has anything to hang his hat on either. Harvick did initiate contact with a driver he knows full well has a temper…and that owed him one. Harvick tried to throw a punch at Busch before Busch had gotten out of his car. And Harvick yet again opted to march into conflict with a driver completely protected by his helmet. If anything, Happy proved that he still needs to grow a pair to match the attitude he sports.
But none of that changes the fact that a driver has been the subject of an intense media lovefest for his supposed maturation since an offseason marriage and a red hot start to 2011 that’s seen him run well in Cup while massacring the minor league ranks of NASCAR. Lesson learned; it’s awful easy to act calm and mature when things are going well. On this Saturday night, that wasn’t the case. Busch had a car capable of winning this race, but a mid-race vibration and an unscheduled pit stop mired the No. 18 too far back in traffic to take this trophy home. Top 10 was the best case on this Saturday night.
And lo and behold, that “maturity” went out the window. There was Busch, playing rough with one of NASCAR’s nastiest, and then literally running away from the situation after the fact. There was Busch, wrecking another car after the checkered flag flew (not the first time, flash back to Watkins Glen in 2005, when Busch ran over Anthony Lazzaro after the race concluded). And there was Busch, basking in media attention for his misdeed as if he’d made a point, as if he’d stood up for himself on the sport’s biggest stage.
Busch certainly made a point. The “old” Kyle Busch is alive and well. No matter the PR job that Joe Gibbs Racing does, and no matter the rubber stamp DW and so many in the media put on it, Kyle Busch is still a petulant punk of a race car driver, even if there’s a ring on his finger. And though he may be smiling more in 2011, the same attitude and behaviors that for years have kept one of NASCAR’s greatest talents from realizing anything short of stacks of minor league wins are all still there.
Then again, Mars Inc. is probably thrilled. The terror of a little kid they’ve had hawking candy for the past few years started talking, acting and smirking like one again.
©2000 - 2008 Bryan Davis Keith and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
How pathetic. You and Harvick are both just pissed that Kyle Busch is a better substitute for the “real” Earnhardt than Harvick ever was.
So, Kyle is sitting in a car with a seat that virtually surrounds him, wearing a full face helmet, and he’s worried that Keving is going to punch him? All he had to do was keep the face plate down and turn his head and let Kevin break a knuckle trying to swing at him (Ask Mikey Waltrip how well that works). At least Harvick was willing to settle it mano a mano. As many times as Kyle has ‘bumped’ other cars out of his way without apology makes it even sillier. But we all knew he hadn’t really changed, didn’t we?
Harvick stayed in his car till he radioed for his posse to show up. And the posse (I counted 8 crew members of Harvicks)were the only ones that could possibly have been hit by Harvick’s car (poetic justice?. Kyle did the smart thing. Getting into a fight with 9-1 odds against you is not a smart move by even the best fighters.
No facts here. Just assumptions of what is going on in each of the drivers minds. Biased editorials based on preconceived opinions.
I guess the author of this article saw a different set of events than I. First off, crossing the Start/Finish at the beginning of lap 364 Harvick was outside, one row in front of Busch, but the outside line was hung up. As Busch on the inside lane was about to pass Harvick, Harvick dived three full lanes left forcing Busch way to the inside and out of the racing lane. Busch then held position to the inside (the preferred line) and half a car length behind in turns one and two, finally making the pass through three and four. Then he was bumped hard by a veteran driver(Harvick) who knows that hitting a driver in that part of the car is definitely going to cause him problems. Beating and banging ensued resulting in Bowyer getting dumped. Following that, Kyle may have gotten loose, but more likely than not, he returned the “veteran driver” bump to Harvick. That was ugly racing, but it was racing. What happened after the race was over was childish and petty. Busch, who has been lambasted over the years, tried to take the high road. He is trying to turn his image around and Harvicks knows it. Harvick did his best to goad Busch into a fight, one that surely would have erased any progress to date with Busch’s image cleansing process. But don’t worry, where Harvick failed, the author of this article has surely picked up. Busch did hit Harvick’s car, but they were less than a foot apart at a complete stop. It was a bad choice, yet it was just about the only choice Busch had short of a fist fight. A fist fight would have certainly brought out the “Old Kyle” comments faster than anything. Of course, that may be exactly what many people want. Had Harvick acted like a man and took his car to garage as is the custom, none of the events would have happened. Busch’s interview before heading off to the NASCAR hauler was not childish, it was actually done quite well. He actually said it was cool that NASCAR had summoned them, because they would have a chance to talk it out and figure out why the events happened as they did. The author failed to mention that part because it didn’t fit his agenda. But I guess it is lost on Frontstretch readers that trashy writers will stir up any king of garbage that they can to sell more ad space.
The most entertaining part of the whole mess was listening to DW fumble and fart around trying to justify PeeWee crossing down to take Harvick out. If it had been ANY other driver, DW would have said “He intentionally wrecked him”; but since it was PeeWee Herman, all DW could muster was something like “I’m not sure what that was all about” !?!?! I guess it didn’t fit in with the oft-mentioned script for the show: “Kyle Busch at the HEIGHT OF HIS MATURITY”. What a sad, sick joke. As I’ve said before, why doesn’t DW just lean over and give PeeWee a big ole wet kiss and get it over with? Man, I can’t wait for the Fox part of the broadcast season to be over with!
Well this whole situation would make me laugh if it wasn’t so dangerous. I am just glad no one was hurt on pit road. I have said all along that Kyle Busch and Harvick are the two biggest jerks in all motorsports. I think they proved my point Saturday night. I would love to see them take each other out every week except that someone else might get hurt. There never was a “new” Kyle Busch. That was Joe Gibbs and Fox’s creation. Now we see how that played out. And Harvick is the same old jerk he always was too. Yes if it wasn’t for the fact that someone else could get hurt this would be hilarious!!! But someone else probably would get hurt and these two Bozos would never even care. That is the sad part.
Perfection – I knew this article was gonna be great when the first line was addressed to the blind DW. I don’t know what I was more angered about Saturday night. Kylebaby’s real personality coming out yet again, or DW’s overwhelming case of blindness towards his behavior. I guess this is what, round 5 of the “new Kyle Busch”???
I can’t wait for Dover!!! I’m sure there will be a lot of smashed metal after the race :)
Kyle did many things to avoid any confrontion with Harvick (which would have had consciquences) and pushed Harvick’s car (as Happy stopped right in front of him) still trying to avoid a fight.
These are my 2 drivers. And they both acted like A$$E$ Sat. night.
I too am amazed at how ole DW tried to mitigate Kyle’s deliberate wrecking of Harvick which could have been way worse than what it was. There was plenty of cars behind Kyle and Harvick and it’s just amazing a lot of innocent drivers didn’t get caught up in Kyle’s Mess. Look, I know Harvick has had some problems too but in all honesty, that incident with Harvick and the pass he was trying to make when they got three wide and there was some bumping and rubbing going on looked like good tough hard nosed racing. But, remember Busch can touch anyone he wants to but you had better not ever, ever, touch him. We saw exactly why this spoiled rich kid brat is so hated Sat. Night. And, I want to personally give thanks to Rick Hendricks for dumping this little idiot brat. Sure, it may have cost him some wins but he stood up to Kyle and his personality and said I’m not going to put up with you. However, the good christian man Mr. Gibbs has no problem with Kyle as long as he can get win for him regardless of his antics or whatever. One of these days when Kyle pulls one of these stunts and Kyle gets somebody seriously hurt, crippled, or killed, wonder what ole DW and Kyle’s Fans will spin then. Nascar’s wonders what’s wrong with them and why the crowds or down. All they have to look at is Kyle. People are tired of going to races and watching him win because he is so disliked. Guess he fits in good with Gibb’s Racing. Remember the old saying “you’re known by the company you keep”. Gibbs Racing ought to remember this.
Larry, if there was a like button on these comments I would click it for your comment. Very well stated.
Geez, Larry, why don’t you tell us how you really fee? Look, these are 2 of my drivers and I like them both, and they did both act like asses the other night. But why are we making such a big deal out of it? Yes, Kyle made a mistake by running into Harvick’s unpiloted car, but remove that from the situation. Take away that one error in judgement and what do we have? We have the type of situation that makes race fans salivate. 2 drivers at the end of 500 going at it and getting a little physical, with a nice confrontation after the race for good measure. I’ll take that over “Well, I wanna thank Lowe’s and my guys and all the awesome competitors I compete against. NASCAR is the greatest sanctioning body ever. Thanks for coming to Auto Club Speedway.” The fact of the matter is, one judgement error has everybody up in arms over what would have been a great situation for the sport (not to mention Dover).
No one has really responded to the dead-on part of the article which described Kyle the Mature’s comments after the race. DW, et al continued to act like this was the “new and improved” #18. I have intuited all along that this was a handler’s creation, a sock puppet with a fake smile, like one of those e-mouths you used to see on Conan, lip-synching empty niceties. Most inauthentic person I ever witnessed. This time it was all on display, even though he had the fake mouth thing going. It was fakier than ever, and even though he didn’t storm off like he used to, boy driver’s words and attitude were a Mars Corp. demographic dream.
With ya on shrubber still just a punk…I to thought things were a changing… Other than the chicken stuff he should..My only problem is in that moment of panic some one on pit road could have been hurt …That boy & Harv are lucky
I’m glad I wasn’t the only one that noticed DW fumbling around trying to justify Kyle running over Harvick.
But then again, FOX is becoming quite the joke. I mean focusing on this altercation instead of Regan’s win just confirms to all that they don’t care about the racing but more about hyping up the race and their favorites. You wonder if JJ or Jr won the race, how they would have juggled that.
Anyway, they get their wish. They can hype up next weeks race all week now. For a network to put so much effort in hyping up a race, they sure blow it when it comes to actually broadcasting it.
Harvick has always been you get what you see. Childress has never sugar-coated Harvick’s rep. He’s a hot-head and doesn’t always do the PC thing.
After Darlington, I will not support the Joe Gibbs hypocrites. Joe Gibbs needs to speak to his drivers to clean up their acts or get out of Nascar. M&M should be ashamed to support the likes of Kyle Busch. Mars should go to better people. You do not need Kyle Busch. He is bad publicity for families and their kids. No more Mars products here. Fed Ex cry baby driver Hamlin. Go UPS for business. No more Home Depot. Lowes or Menards for hardware.
let’s not forget that kyle busch also destroyed bobby labonte’s car and put marcos ambrose into the wall on the last lap also because of idiotic driving.
Ur writing sums this situation up as well as anything ive read , definitely be a reader from now on ! Thnx
Fox did a terbbile job of showing the harvick/busch contact, comming off of turn 2 harvick came down 3-4 lanes and pushed kyle almost to the inside wall. Also harvick’s car got up to a whopping 5 mph, about the same speed Menard was going when he ran over his crew member.
okay, I’m tired of everyone being on Kyle’s case. Kyle didn’t do a thing wrong on the track(or at least, nothing Kevin wouldn’t have done).I’ll admit, the pit road thing was uncalled for but i mean… Kevin boxed him in and didn’t even have the decency to take his helmet off or let kyle get out. and how dare you say the “new kyle” wasn’t in darlington. he raced with respect and maturity all night long and it was paying off towards the end there. yeah he lost his temper but everyone does. and we all know even this kyle doesn’t have a very long fuse. you people make me sick,constantly letting your bias get in the way of your ability to think clearly. i knew the moment he didn’t do something poster-boyish, everyone would get on his case like they’re glued there. geez
Bush is a wussy. And so is Forehead Harvick. Looks like Bush never considered his only option – getting out of his car and kicking Harvicks butt. But neither one would have had the guts to take their hemlets off. What a joke. Bet NASCAR paid them a bonus for stirring up a little excitement. ‘HAVE AT IT BOYS’.
I guess Dana will have to take care of Kyle.
The only thing funnier than what happened on the track Saturday night is all of these idiots letting their hatred for Kyle show through. If he had gotten out of his car and started throwing punches, both with helmets on, they would have looked like a couple of morons. Instead Kyle bumped Harvicks car out of the way. First of all, no one seems to mention that maybe Harvick should not have left his vehicle unattended so he could throw a punch at a fellow driver. Secondly, Kyle made multiple attempts to avoid any conflict but Harvick wouldnt let it go. Thirdly, it doesnt matter if he wrecked him on purpose or not. Harvick hit him just a few laps earlier, and put him in the wall at homestead. Harvick didnt get in front of a microphone to announce his intentions and say “i parked your teammate” someone happened to over hear that comment. Harvick is no more of a man than any other driver out there. I simply cannot believe that a driver got out of his car to strike another is considered the lesser of the two aggressors in this situation. Absoulutel abhorent and completely biased writing. Finally, what the h3ll is all of this talk about how you people think the “new” kyle is not authentic. Of course its not authentic, but this is what you wanted! You hated the old kyle, too arrogant, too cocky, too rough around the edges, doesnt interview well, says the wrong things, blah blah blah blah blah. You got what you wished for! What Kyle Busch does in front of a mic is no different than any other jack a55 that stands up there. Dale Jr stumbles through interviews like he barely knows the english language and no one comments on his inability to communicate. Its time to decide once and for all what you want! If it were me, I would adapt to what the people paying $20 Million a year to sponsor my car wanted as well. You people are not the ones paying his salary. I tend to do what my boss wants as well.
matt’s the only one who said anything that made sense…(including the article writer)
Spot on, Matt.
All that these ‘writers’ have to do is bash Kyle and they’re instant stars, I guess.
All you Kryle Busch lovers need to reread his history….
Frankly, most comments I’ve read on here and other sites seemed to be more concerned with the pit road events. I was more concerned about how Kyle just blatenly took Harvick out in front of the field. Kyle should have at least been parked at that time but Nascar just does nothing and when some driver or innocent other driver gets caught up in Kyle’s Mess the blood will be on Nascar not Kyle because Nascar has done nothing. What a joke for the fines and double secret probation handed out today. Again, Nascar will have blood on their hands one day because of things like this.
Matt & Pat yall need to hang out together…I’ve never said ANYthing that was incorrect or biased against shrubber … The boy has incredible skill ..But he’s such an A’s Hole most folks will never see it…I Was just backing off my M7M’s ban (& Thx for supporting Nascar) The he turned back into the shrub (in every way) Comments do NOT = Your (yes both) comments where Your Bia’s is Quite Clear…Thx & Best To All Nascar Fan’s
& Larry I Completely agree …It will hurt the sport so bad right now.. & Why wait till some one’s hurt..& Both Partys have a ton O’ guilt here… Just one was worse…The hit (last one) was a really cheap shot considering the situation & than just man up after ya know …( miss the 70-90’s)