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Here’s what the reckless behavior of NASCAR drivers like Busch and Annett has done

By admin | May 26, 2011

By Richard Allen

With the speeding citation(or rather the reckless and careless driving citation) he received on Tuesday, Kyle Busch has managed to do quite a lot. Aside from proving that he could drive a car at a high rate of speed, which we already knew, he has managed to draw criticism, jokes and all sorts of other publicity, and to place NASCAR ever closer to the rest of the sporting world.

Earlier this year, Nationwide Series driver Michael Annett was taken in for allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol. And not only did police claim he was intoxicated, it was stated in the police report that his blood alcohol content was four times that of the legal limit.

For years NASCAR has marketed itself as a sport with athletes unlike all the others. According to the messages that has been disseminated, the drivers who compete at the highest level in American motorsports are family oriented, law abiding, personable and approachable.

The ‘law abiding’ part of that claim is fading fast. The excessive actions of Busch and Annett give off the impression that, like many other highly placed people in our society, that the same rules do not apply to them as everyone else.

Other sporting leagues such as the NFL, NBA and MLB are on an almost weekly basis having to deal with one of their performers getting into some sort of legal entanglement. NASCAR has long wanted to fit in with the other sports and now they finally seem to be, although not in the way they might have wanted.

Young people being handed vast amounts of wealth and never being told no to anything will invariably lead to these types of incidents.

Another thing Busch’s speeding citation did was draw attention away from one of NASCAR’s biggest events. The Coca-Cola 600 coming up this weekend is one of the sport’s crown jewels. Now, the lead in on pre-race shows for that event will be about a ‘careless and reckless’ competitor who was driving 83mph over the speed limit in a sports car that none of the viewers could ever dream of owning.

However, there is an old saying that declares, “Any publicity is good publicity” so in some twisted way, the leaders of NASCAR may give Busch one of those wink and nudge reprimands since he has put the sport on a number of media outlets it might have never been exposed to otherwise.

Also, Busch has made himself the butt of a number of jokes over the last couple of days. The morning radio program ‘Johnboy and Billy Big Show’ offered up a humorous top-10 Kyle Busch excuses list just this morning. Of course, Busch is probably used to being the butt of jokes so this may not be such a bad thing either.

But lastly, and most seriously, Busch driving so fast allows others to somehow think it’s something that is OK to do. I have heard more people than not reason that because he is a NASCAR driver he can handle a car at that speed, or that as long as the driver is in control the speed does not matter, and other mindless statements from those who seem to forget that others are on the road at the same time who might become the innocent victim of such stupid behavior.

I teach in a high school full of teenage boys who are looking for any justification they can find for driving in a foolish manner. Now, thanks to Kyle Busch, they have now found another way to justify their bad driving by saying, “Kyle Busch does it.” And more, the foolish behavior of Busch and Annett have now placed NASCAR drivers in the same “rules don’t apply to me like the rest of society” category as other athletes.

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Topics: Articles |

7 Responses to “Here’s what the reckless behavior of NASCAR drivers like Busch and Annett has done”

  1. Joe W. Says:
    May 26th, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Mr. Allen, you are 100% correct. This is a sad day for Nascar. I wish Joe Gibbs would “man up” and suspend Busch for a race, but that would hurt his bottom line so that will not be happening. Sad day indeed!!

  2. jerseygirl Says:
    May 26th, 2011 at 12:08 pm

    Nice article and you are correct. The fact is that he was far above the legal limit and although Busch is capable of controlling his car, other people on the same road might find themselves in an accident because of it.

    Joe Gibbs would never do that. For all his public piety, he never reprimands his drivers for their behavior. Stewart got away with acting like a jerk, so do Hamlin and Busch.

    Maybe M&M Mars will have something to say — bad example for all the little kiddies they market that candy too

  3. Glen H Says:
    May 26th, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    Rich, your bias is showing.

    I don’t remember you or anyone in the NA$CAR press saying much about Brian France who, allegedly, hit a tree and a couple of cars while driving under for the influence a few years back in Daytona (but then most of the NA$CAR press is owned by Brian France).

    I also didn’t hear a lot of condemnation coming from the press about Allmendinger (driving while impared), Kurt Busch (4 speeding and 1 reckless citation and didn’t he have some sort of DUI in Arizona?), Hamlin (4 speeding, 1 reckless), Montoya (speeding - 107mph) or Vickers (4 speeding including one for 100+mph).

    And let’s not forget incidents with Richard Petty, Sterlin Marlin, Michael Waltrip….

    Yep, let’s get the rope and hang Kyle Busch before he single handedly destroys the universe.

  4. Richard Allen Says:
    May 26th, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    If you think I am in any way a supporter of/or owned by Brian France you obviously do not visit this site often.

    Several of the incidents(Petty, Marlin and others) you mentioned were before the origination of this site so it would have difficult to have known my opinion unless you talked to me directly. And I can’t speak for any other media. Also, the Annett incident is mentioned in this very piece so I obviously didn’t just single out Busch.

    And bias has nothing to do with stating that going 128mph in a 45mph zone is stupid. It’s stupid no matter who does it.

  5. Mr. Tony Geinzer Says:
    May 26th, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    Rich, I was personally hurt by Michael Annett’s DUI last Winter with a lot of other folks and I feel that Kyle Busch and James Stewart, who isn’t a NASCAR Man, Feloniously Impersonated a Cop are going to be wore out like Scott Speed and we need role models for kids,Rich and not Kyle Busch.

  6. the Bear Says:
    May 26th, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    Well stated Rich!! Obliviously Glen H. doesn’t have a wife or children, that could have been right around the next corner obeying the speed limit. I am a professional driver for 39 years, and would hate to try and avoid THAT accident!!He surely endangered human life and should reap the consequences!!!

  7. Dona Martin Says:
    May 28th, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    One of the biggest complaints this country has is that professional athletes have become poor role models for the children in this country. This proves that NASCAR is no exception. Not only because of the incident itself, but because there is no one with the internal fortitude to stand up and discipline the person involved.

    I would like to point out a driver once was cited for saying SH** on the air. But NASCAR won’t cite a driver for the endangerment he put persons on civilian streets? NASCAR further won’t hold a driver accountable for an activity that shows complete irresponsibility and lack of judgment?

    Maybe Mr. Busch should be the adult here and withdraw himself from the competitions as an acknowlegement of his screw up. Oh wait, that would mean he would have a conscience and accept the responsibility for what he did. Oh wait, he can’t even do that on the track, why would he do it off the track?