By admin | August 22, 2010
By Richard Allen
Brad Keselowski threw down the gauntlet in driver introductions and Kyle Busch immediately picked it up and spanked the field with it for the third time in one weekend. He won the Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series races at the Bristol Motor Speedway over the course of four days.
Handing forty-three racecar drivers an open microphone may not have led to the most appropriate behavior in the world but it sure perked up the crowd awaiting the Irwin Tools Night Race on Saturday when Keselowski declared that, “Kyle Busch is an ass!” The statement was met with an enthusiastic roar from the assembled masses.
Busch and Keselowski had had a run-in the night before on the same track during a Nationwide Series race. The incident caused Keselowski, the standings’ leader in that series, to lose positions and points while Busch went on to a somewhat unpopular win. Busch added insult to injury during his celebration when he mocked the booing crowd with a fake crying motion. So, needless to say, Keselowski’s pre-race declaration on Saturday made him somewhat of a hero in the eyes of many.
However, races are not won on microphones, they are won on the track. And that is exactly where Busch did the talking for much of the next three hours.
If there are any out there who doubt that Busch is a great wheel man, perhaps even the best in the sport today, then go back and look at the move Busch made to take the lead away from Jimmie Johnson after a lap 199 restart.
Johnson had chosen the outside lane leaving Busch the less favored bottom groove. At the drop of the green, Busch fainted low but then immediately tucked in behind the #48 until the cars reached turn one. Then Busch made a daring move to the outside and stormed passed Johnson.
And perhaps the move of the night came just after Jamie McMurray had taken the lead of the race late in the going. As both cars made the way to pit road at lap 400 for a green flag stop, Busch got around McMurray just before the two reached the entrance to pit road and thus had to maintain pit road speed. The advantage allowed Busch’s crew to get him out ahead of McMurray and put him in position to eventually claim the lead away from David Reutimann.
Busch started 19th and finished 1st. Keselowski started 15th and finished 19th, almost two full laps down. Keselowski got a lot of cheers in the pre-race festivities for what he did on the microphone. Kyle Busch got a trophy and a big check for what he did on the track.
I don’t know Kyle Busch personally. He may or may not be an ass. However, I know he kicked 42 others on Saturday, and he no doubt particularly enjoyed one of those.
And for the record, I am neither a Kyle Busch or Brad Keselowski fan but I did get a bit of a chuckle out of Keselowski comment.
Follow @RacingWithRich on twitter.
Richard Allen is a member of the National Motorsports Press Association. His weekly columns appear in The Mountain Press and The Knoxville Journal.
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