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Column: NASCAR needs Kyle Busch to be himself
Like him or hate him, Busch had you talking about him and that’s good for NASCAR’s business.
Now? He seems somewhat defeated. The constant booing from fans, the nasty messages on Twitter, the stifling media scrutiny and the never-ending sponsor glad-handing he’s got to do as both a driver and a team owner has pushed Busch to the edge of bitterness. He wasn’t cocky or confident in his media availabilities at Bristol; he was fulfilling an obligation with zero enthusiasm.
Everyone is to blame for this. Busch for the bad decisions and missteps he’s made, the media for holding him to a double standard _ he’s crucified for not talking when he’s angry, but five-time champion Jimmie Johnson got a pass for the exact same thing last week _ and the fans for not appreciating him for the excitement and entertainment he brings to NASCAR.
We’ll all follow the Chase down to the wire whether Busch is part of it or not. But if Busch was allowed to be Busch _ you know, the one with 105 victories spanning NASCAR’s three national series _ we’d all find it a lot more enjoyable.
Busch announced Monday he’ll be back in his truck this weekend at Atlanta. It will be his first start of the season, and the first weekend he’s running all three series again. Maybe that’s the medicine he needs to get his groove back.
You can root for him to win, or you can root for him to never make it to Victory Lane again. Either way, he needs to be part of the conversation again.
By Tammy Bruce
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