Tuesday, December 6, 2011

What Now For Kurt Busch

With Kurt Busch's "mutual" ouster at Penske Racing, we are left to wonder who will get his old ride in the #22 Dodge? I believe the reason he had to leave the Penske #2 ride last year was because the new sponsor of the 22 demanded a "championship caliber" driver. That verbiage cuts Kurt's potential replacements down to Bill Elliott, Terry Labonte, Kimi Raikkonen, and not much else.

The other big question is where will Kurt wind up? It is difficult to imagine many sponsors willing to give his past bad behavior a flyer. And, the sponsors control every driver move made in nascar. The JGR, Home Depot, #20 is the only possibility.... and that is slight. Home Depot is fed up with getting their ass kicked weekly by Jimmie Johnson's Lowes Chevy. Home Depot also has experience in dealing with a "difficult" driver... hey, Smoke.

Fifteen years ago, talented Robby Gordon was a hot shot, open wheeled, prima donna with nascar team owners bidding for his talent. Seven years, and four teams later, the hot-headed Gordon was out of options, formed his own team, and is now a start-and-parker.

Busch now has burned bridges with two power teams in the Cup series. His next chance may be his last. Just ask Robby.


  1. Gene I saw Stenhouse's name come up as a possibility for the 22. It came from Larry McReynolds. Makes me wonder if there's more to the animosity between Edwards and Stenhouse than has been let on...

    I'm having a hard time coming up with any interest in Kurt...

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  3. Sorry about that...

    I do have a sponsor for Kurt though... Since he swears like a sailor maybe the US Navy should sponsor him!

  4. Tez here; the Kimster is out due to signing for Lotus in F1 for next year. I think he only did it since it'll be easier for him to get vodka considering Petrov's his teammate...

  5. Dwindy... Tuesday night everyone is saying that David Ragan is meeting with Penske right now, and signing a contract to drive the 22.

    Lots of people were mentioning Stenhouse and Trevor Bayne... because RFR doesn't have full time Cup rides lined up for either in 2012. Sort of an unwritten rule that an owner will release a NW driver if that driver is offered a Cup ride elsewhere. Kind of like an assistant coach being released to become a head coach elsewhere in the NFL.

    Tez... There is some talk of Kurt going to Indy cars.

  6. Oh man oh man I am already sick of talking about this! LOL

    I really hope 3x is the charm (RFR, Miller, Penske) for Kurt to turn it around...and maybe the addition of Patricia and her kid as added inspiration to get the petulance and anger under control.

    I can see him doing NHRA but not IRL. I can see him driving for Gibbs since he has the skill to manage ego's like this but it is not like he and Kyle are best of buds so that could be even more volatile as they fight for supremacy. And poor Hamlin, yee gawds. I dunno what he is going to do with a lesser ride, head will explode when he recognizes how good he had it....or his therapist would be miracle worker. I got nothin...

    Penske has pissed me off long ago - he had Justin all ready to move up the farm system and then just dropped him at slightest problem of sponsorship. Now he's grooming Sam again, but why not give Sam NW ride instead of Brad and be a year ahead? Stupid. Brad has risen to the occasion but at the expense of Kurt's ego moving to the 2 but in no way can he carry Penske into future -- he has no idea how to set up the cars and asked Kurt weekly about it. So as far as I see, Penske should just focus on IRL like usual and flounder in NASCAR as usual...

    Mostly I am just pissed if my buds lose jobs because of this and some already have.

  7. Kris... It has been a bad couple of months for Busch fans.

    I was discussing the "what if" Kurt went to JGR with someone today. Even though Kurt and Kyle aren't that tight, Denny would probably self-implode from jealousy and suspicion.

    Your right, Algaier is the one name I have not heard in this Penske merry-go-round. I'd like to see him get a chance with a real team. Perhaps the KBM NW team?

  8. Both Busch brothers at Gibbs??? If he even considers it, I'd say Coach needs to book some serious time on Kristen's couch.

    If Kurt stays in NASCAR, he will not be in a Ford. Roush seems to have his hand in all things Ford, and I'm pretty sure that he would put the brakes on any Ford team hiring Kurt.

    If he stays in NASCAR, I see him with a lesser team, but NOT a start and park team. Say what you want about the man, but he just doesn't impress me as the type who would be happy with a start and park deal.

    The #13, #36, and #51 are teams that readily come to mind. I'm pretty sure there are sponsors on those cars who would "love" to have Kurt in their car for the exposure. I know that the #51 has the same arrangement with Hendrick that SHR does, so the equipment there would be better than average.

    Would having a driver like Kurt in one of those cars make a difference??? Three years ago, Haas/CNC was in the same boat- great equipment, but no talent behind the wheel. Not saying that hiring Kurt would bring about the same change at Germain, Baldwin, or Finch, but at least they'd have a driver CAPABLE of winning races.

  9. SB.... great points! The 51 car has been better than decent with Landon Cassill driving it. So, Kurt should be able to get it into the top-10 fairly often.