NASCAR

Busch explains Talladega incident

Kurt Busch at Talladega
Kurt Busch drives away from the crew after wrecking at Talladega.
Share This Story

Lee Spencer

Lee Spencer is the Senior NASCAR Writer for FOXSports.com. She has provided award-winning coverage of auto racing over the last 15 years. Spencer has lent her expertise to both television and radio and is a regular contributor to SiriusXM Radio and the Performance Racing Network. Follow her on Twitter.

MORE>>
 
   
 

TALLADEGA, Ala.

Kurt Busch’s luck ran out at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday — along with NASCAR’s patience.

Busch was leading the Good Sam 500 in his final run with Phoenix Racing when he ran out of fuel and got slammed from behind on Lap 99.

“I’m out of fuel and I got wrecked,” Busch said on the radio. “Why am I out of gas? ...  probably because I’m getting side-drafted. ... The car started losing power and I get wrecked on two."

According to the team, Busch had five laps of fuel remaining in the tank, but at that point it didn’t matter. Busch had already removed his helmet and could not hear the radio relay. As safety workers approached Busch’s car to assist him, he couldn’t hear the directive from NASCAR via his spotter Steve Barkdoll, “they want you to stop Kurt. They want you to stop.”

But Busch climbed back in his car and kept going — much to the ire of NASCAR.

FINAL SHOT

Things got out of control quickly at Talladega. PHOTOS.

Crew chief Nick Harrison radioed to the crew, “Go to the garage guys, go to the garage. Everybody load up. We’re done. . . . Let Kurt know he needs to go to the trailer.”

Vice president of competition Robin Pemberton said NASCAR expressed concern for the welfare of the safety workers.

“He made an effort to get back in the car and get back into the garage, and we felt like it put some of our folks in harm’s way,” Pemberton said. “We just talked to him about that.

“We parked the car for his actions, and we called him in the hauler about driving off with medical equipment on the car and our workers that were trying to tend to the situation. We’ll talk more, probably earlier in the week.”

Busch is currently on double probation — first for a run-in with Ryan Newman at Darlington Raceway in May and subsequently for a raucous exchange with a reporter at Dover International Speedway in June which led to a one-race suspension the following week at Pocono Raceway.

At Talladega, Busch said he vacated his car to “survey the damage.” After assessing the situation, he attempted to drive back to the garage.

“I remembered with these engines they will run at 20 percent of fuel pressure to get it back to the garage,” Busch said. “So I tried like heck. That is the competitor in me, which is the desire that I have and that is what gets misconstrued all the time.

“This is the way my life works. Today is a perfect example. I am leading, I wreck, I run out of gas, I’m still that competitive guy that tried to get back in the race and now NASCAR is yelling at me because I don’t have my helmet on and I’m trying to get it to the garage so the guys can work on it.

“Now I’m in trouble, now I have this little storm right here. This is my life. I’m not complaining. I put myself in a lot of these situations, but it’s on to good things now moving forward. I got all the bad luck out of the way. This year has been a great year to test me in every way.”

Busch signed to drive for Furniture Row Racing two weeks ago. He is expected to drive the No. 78 Chevrolet next weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway. However, his plans could be on hold as he awaits NASCAR’s decision.

Regan Smith, who Busch is set to replace, finished fifth in the Furniture Row entry — his first top five of the season. Smith has agreed to drive for Phoenix Racing at Charlotte.

Tagged: Kurt Busch

More Stories From Lee Spencer

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



NASCAR Videos

TRUCKS: Erik Jones gets his 2nd career win - Iowa 2014 Posted: Jul 12, 2014
Erik Jones holds off Ryan Blaney for the win in Iowa.

TRUCKS: Timothy Peters wrecks Ron Hornaday - Iowa 2014 Posted: Jul 12, 2014
Timothy Peters deliberately wrecks into Ron Hornaday under caution on Lap 63.

CUP: Kyle Busch Shatters Track Record in Qualifying - Loudon 2014 Posted: Jul 12, 2014
Kyle Busch reacts to winning the pole at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Chase Authentics Danica Patrick Big Rig Tri-Blend T-Shirt - Charcoal http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Danica_Patrick/browse/featuredproduct/974547/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_974000/ff_974547_xl.jpg&w=100 26.95 Chase Authentics Danica Patrick Big Rig Tri-Blend T-Shirt - Charcoal
    Kyle Busch One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Kyle_Busch/browse/featuredproduct/1011659/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1011000/ff_1011659_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 Kyle Busch One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black
    Matt Kenseth One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Matt_Kenseth/browse/featuredproduct/1011661/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1011000/ff_1011661_xl.jpg&w=100 9.99 Matt Kenseth One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black
    Chase Authentics Carl Edwards 2013 Driver Schedule T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Carl_Edwards/browse/featuredproduct/1041164/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1041000/ff_1041164_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Chase Authentics Carl Edwards 2013 Driver Schedule T-Shirt - Ash