Thursday, June 7, 2012

Is Kurt Busch good or bad for NASCAR?

NASCAR handed down a suspension for driver Kurt Busch until June 13th. It's been a wild couple of weeks for Busch who has been nothing but a sideshow over the course of the last two seasons. He's already fallen out of grace with Penske, and now is on the verge of wearing out his welcome with the underfunded Phoenix Racing team. No one wants to sponsor a guy who picks battles with every member of the media that he can. You'll often see Busch driving a very blank car on Sundays and a Monster Energy Toyota for his little brother, Kyle, on Saturdays.

Of course, NASCAR wants their drivers to have personality as it develops rivalries on and off the track, but in Kurt's case his antics often cross the line. His often profanity laced rants at reporters are unacceptable, these people are doing their jobs, just like Busch's job is to drive a car and act like a professional. Instead he rips up papers, threatens to "beat the s**t out of" reporters, confronts other drivers and their crews (in Nationwide events). NASCAR doesn't need this clown running around drawing all this negative attention on himself. No team wants to put up with that, and none of them should be expected to. All Busch is doing with his antics, is running away sponsors, and ultimately dollars for his team. James Finch, owner of Phoenix Racing said, "He needs to either get his mind right or he's going to be working somewhere else. Quit wrecking cars. Be nice to people. That's not hard to do."

After Busch acted his way out of his job with Penske Racing last season, Finch and Busch made a 'handshake agreement' for him to drive with Phoenix Racing this season, but it's looking like Finch is becoming skeptical of Busch's ability to control himself saying, "If he's going to kill himself I'm not going to be in the airplane with him, if that's what he's planning on doing, I am going to get out."

Although Busch is seemingly on thin ice with everyone, it has got people and networks talking about NASCAR. However, all publicity isn't necessarily good publicity. The sport cannot afford a black eye just because one driver loses his cool. If Kurt Busch doesn't learn how to control his anger, I believe that this suspension is just a foreshadowing of much stiffer sanctions from NASCAR, if his teams don't kick him out first.


  1. I think it's great for the sport it gives fans as a whole, someone to collectively root against

  2. While I do believe you want someone with that outspoken personality, there is no use in attacking members of the media. He is costing his team sponsorship dollars, and if I'm a team owner, he's driven his last race for me.

  3. In regards to sponsorship money, yea its bad for his image and it has a negative effect on Phoenix Racing but for Nascar as a whole....well people who don't normally get involved with the sport are talking about it again.

  4. I agree that it got people buzzing about NASCAR that normally wouldn't, but as a team owner its really hard to keep a guy like that. Sponsors just don't want to be associated with that. Its bad rep for them to support a guy like that and the teams need those sponsors.