By admin | September 19, 2009
By Richard Allen
Pat Tryson has announced he will leave his job as crew chief for Kurt Busch’s #2 team at the end of the 2009 season. The timing of the announcement was a bit curious considering Tryson intends to stay with the Penske Racing South organization through the end of the season. Since the job he is going to will still be there for him whether he announced his intentions or not, it seems as though it could be detrimental to his current team’s chances of winning the Chase for the Championship by going ahead with the announcement of his plans.
Busch labeled the timing of Tryson’s announcement as unfortunate.
Listening to the chatter between drivers and their crews is one of the most interesting things a fan can do when at the races or when using the TrackPass feature on NASCAR.com. However, one down side to such eavesdropping is that the true personalities of the drivers and crews is revealed in that chatter more so than when only relying on television interviews for such analysis.
There are several drivers who, at best, are hard to listen to due to their constant whining and verbal abuse that is heaped upon their crews. Kurt Busch, among numerous others, is one of those drivers to be particularly abusive toward his crew.
Busch’s verbal tirades go well beyond constructive criticism and border on Bobby Knight style name calling and accusations.
Tryson says that his leaving the Penske operation is not on account of Busch. Anyone who has ever listened to that team’s scanner talk would likely not blame him if it were.
Perhaps Tryson really is leaving because he has grown tired of babysitting Busch. Or, perhaps he is leaving because he believes he has truly found a better opportunity.
However, the real lesson here should be learned by Busch. If he runs off good crew chiefs then he will find he will have much more to complain about in the future as his team has to find someone to take the job who will be willing to take all the harsh criticism. That person may not necessarily be the best at setting his car up.
Busch says he wants Tryson to remain on top of the race day pit box despite the fact that the crew chief has essentially been locked out of the Penske shop. This will make for a truly odd situation for the rest of the season.
Richard Allen is a member of the National Motorsports Press Association. His weekly column appears in The Mountain Press every Wednesday.
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