I wasn’t sure if I was going to write about the new addition to Stewart Haas Racing. I have read several articles about Kurt Busch coming to SHR as well as other media sites about the story. I just don’t know if there is a need to write another story about it. I have not been quiet about my dislike for Kurt Busch over the years. He is a hot-headed and quite frankly he can be a complete a-hole. He has tangled with Tony Stewart along with other drivers on his new team. He is a polarizing figure in the sport. Every time he is announced at driver introductions, he gets more boos than cheers. So why would you want someone like this on your racing team?
The man can drive a car and he knows how to win. Why wouldn’t you want the man on your race team? Was he the driver I would have loved to seen go to SHR? One word-NO (and I believe Tony wasn’t on board right way). Think about the make up of the 2014 Stewart Haas Racing Team (prior to the addition of Kurt)–Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick, and Danica Patrick. These drivers have been known to say what they think and make no apologies about it. They can be a little hot-headed at times. One just has to look at the last Saturday’s race at Bristol. Kevin thought he was wronged by Denny Hamlin. He went over to his car while on pit road to discuss the matter further with Denny. Or who could forget last year at Bristol, Tony throwing his helmet at Matt Kenseth’s car. If you need any further evidence, just check out You Tube. Now throw in Kurt Busch…wow! Some of the commenters out there believe Kurt Busch has anger management issues. Who doesn’t on some kind of level? Some are better than others at controlling their anger. Tony is no stranger to anger management issues. I think he has “mellowed” a little over the last several years. I contribute this to getting older and being a team owner. But don’t make this mistake in saying this mellowing means his passion for the sport has changed. It hasn’t. I think Kurt has proven he can still be upset about things, but he has done some mellowing himself this year. Despite his past shenanigans, I still believe this is a good move for SHR. With Kurt Busch you get a driver who has 24 wins, 95 top fives and 185 top 10s not to mention he won a championship in 2004. He was the first driver to win a championship under the Chase format. He is currently sitting 12th in the standings on the bubble of making the Chase this year with a one-car team. And I have to admit I like that fact he isn’t afraid to race his brother, Kyle. I mean look what happened in the 2007 All-Star race. Of course I for one would take out my own grandmother for a million dollars. I believe the brothers didn’t talk to one another until their grandmother stepped in.
I am ok with Kurt Busch becoming part of SHR. With that being said, I am did not like how it all came about. I know Gene Haas was the one who wanted Kurt in the SHR stable. That’s fine and dandy. NASCAR is a business and it is all about making the most of your investment. Tony Stewart understands all of this. Gene Haas is a co-owner of SHR along with Tony. I get all that. But in the end, Tony Stewart elevated his racing team. He won a championship within 3 years of creating SHR. It was just weeks ago, Ryan Newman was let go because there was not going to be enough for a fourth team. You have to wonder if Mr. Haas wanted to keep Newman around on SHR. During his time at SHR (this also includes his time this year through 24 races) Newman has 4 wins, 28 top 5s, 70 top 10s. He has won 7 poles and qualified for the Chase only twice since joining SHR in 2009. Compared to Kurt Busch over this time with Roush/Penske/Phoenix and Furniture Row, Kurt has 6 wins, 34 top 5s, 70 top 10s, 6 poles, and qualified 6 times for the Chase. It can be compared they both look similar on paper. But I guess Mr. Haas wanted Kurt Busch on the team. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall when Mr. Haas and Mr. Stewart discussed this matter. I bet it was an interesting conversation and I am sure it didn’t sit well with Tony. I just think the timing of it all is rather hinky. Was there another team entertaining Kurt an offer besides Furniture Row and Mr. Haas wanted to pinned down Kurt while the iron was hot? No matter what any of us think Kurt Busch is now a member of Stewart Haas Racing.
How happy will I be to watch all four members of SHR next year? Happier than a camel on Wednesday! (sorry, for the shameless use of a Geico commercial)
Some final thoughts…
If you missed last night’s That Dang Ol’ Racing show, you must have had something more important to do last night. I was able to win free pizza from Domino’s by winning last week’s Dang Ol’ Racing Challenge. Thanks to Kasey Kahne, Kyle Busch, and Jimmie Johnson for racking up some serious points for me. Does this mean I have to share my pizza with them? I hope not, because I am not good at sharing. This week the boys are headed to Atlanta and I have chosen Jeff Gordon, Kevin Harvick, and Matt Kenseth. Let’s hope these boys get it done, so I can be a two-time winner! As I mentioned in previous posts here in The Park, I was excited to hear about this new show. For years now I have been posting about NASCAR and looking for those of you out there who are willing to banter with me about the sport. I have those who tolerate this obsession of mine. I have tried to explain things to hem and even invited them to watch a race or two with me, but to no avail. Now I have a place I am able to share my thoughts on NASCAR. For my friends and family, you should send on Mr. Ryan Hyatt a thank you. I don’t have to bother you as much or subject you to this thing I love called NASCAR. Well, if you want to catch That Dang Ol’ Racing Show, just tune into 98.5 Real Country every Tuesday from 6-7. You can also find the show on Facebook (That Dang Ol Racing Show,) or on Twitter (@dangolracing). You can find that show blog on my blogroll, just go over to the right side under Infield and click and boom…there you are! So join the show next week, you can have a chance to win free pizza from Dominos and who doesn’t like free pizza! Please note I am not a paid spokesperson or am I compensated in any way shape or form. I just like the show and want others to join in on the fun!