There has been a lot of Nascar news breaking this week, and I have lots of thoughts, so I want to hit some of the highlights quickly.
Everyone knew that Joey Logano was going to take over the Joe Gibb’s Racing #20 Toyota that Tony Stewart is leaving at this season’s end. But, it is absolutely amazing that an 18 year old is going to take over a Spring Cup ride for a full season with no Cup experience. And now Home Depot (one of the biggest sponsors in Nascar) has announced that they are going to sponsor Logano. Amazing. And he is going to rock next season – just look at what he’s done in the Nationwide Series this year.
Nascar and Budweiser are changing the format of the Budweiser Shootout for next season. The Budweiser Shootout marks the start of the season, and it is a non-points paying race that traditionally fields former winners and the previous year’s pole winners. Now the field will include the top 6 cars (decided by owner’s points) from each manufacturer (a total of 24 drivers). I think it is BS, and I’m not the only one. Anheiser Busch is making this marketing move because they will no longer be the sponsor of the pole award (that was picked up by Coor’s, who is now the “official beer” of Nascar). I don’t like this format because it biases the field against Chevrolet. Chevy fields a majority of the cars in the Sprint Cup Series, while Ford, Dodge, and Toyota have few more than 6 cars each. So there will be 6 good drivers from Chevy, while Dodge and Toyota will be fielding some cars with drivers like David Reutimann and Michael Waltrip, who are currently ranked 26th and 30th in driver points in Cup. See the issue?
Last issue, the Carl Edwards vs. Kyle Busch episode last Saturday night at Bristol:
And what did Kyle Busch do after the race?
And then he whined (quoted here):
“He hit me getting into Turn 1,” Busch said. “Whatever. Carl’s going to say he’s sorry, that he didn’t want to race that way, but he always does. We’ll take it, we’ll go on and we’ll race him that way in the Chase if that’s the way he wants to race.”
Seriously? Kyle Busch? Did you just whine because someone bumped you out of the way to win a race?
And then Edwards says what everyone is thinking (quoted here with my emphasis added):
“It’s one of those deals where I couldn’t get by him, I couldn’t get by him, and I just had to ask myself, ‘Would he do that to me?’ Edwards said after doing his trademark backflip off the car in Victory Lane. “And he has before, so that’s the way it goes.”
And there’s no remorse in the offing, Edwards said.
“Let’s make it real clear – I’m not apologizing for it,” Edwards said, citing several instances where he felt like Busch took him out of races to gain positions. “We’re even.”
Kyle Busch has bumped numerous drivers numerous times this year on his way to all his victories. I’ve been waiting all year for someone to put him in his place (namely the wall, but I was hoping it would be done by Stewart or Gordon) and finally my wishes have come true.
I have issues with Kyle Busch, but this season has been boring. Who wants to turn on any Nascar race, any series, and watch him win a race? Because the odds show that he is the odds on favorite to win any race in any of the 3 Nascar national series. I’ve seen it enough this year.
Oh, and the reason for this diatribe was both Busch and Edwards received a 6 race “probation” for rough driving after the race was over. Nascar shouldn’t penalize these guys, they should applaud the fact that there was an exciting race at least once this season.