Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bruton Smith says Busch shouldn't be suspended

Bruton Smith called me up this morning, wanting to talk about Kyle Busch.
Smith is a Charlotte auto magnate whose Speedway Motorsports, Inc. owns Charlotte Motor Speedway and more than a half-dozen other NASCAR tracks.

Smith disagreed with my opinion – you can see it here – that Busch should be suspended by his team owner Joe Gibbs for at least one race after he was clocked in Iredell County doing 128 mph in a 45-mph zone on a public road Tuesday.

“Let the legal system run its course,” Smith said. “That’s what I’d do if he were my employee.”

We talked about that for awhile, and then about a few other things. Smith, whose son Marcus now runs the day-to-day operations at CMS, also mentioned that the NASCAR all-star race format will likely be altered for 2012. (The 2011 version, which was last Saturday, produced a fine crowd but a boring race that had Carl Edwards leading from wire-to-wire over the final 10 laps. Edwards also led at the ends of segments No.2 and 3).

“We’re going to change that format just a little bit,” Smith said. “I can’t tell you exactly what it is, because it’s not finalized. But those 10 laps at the end may grow to 15, and we will do something to make it harder for the driver who’s got the fastest car in the field to just get in front and just stay there.”

That sounded like inversion – where you put the fastest cars at the back and make them wind through traffic during some segments. Smith said it wasn’t settled for sure.

Smith also said he estimated that CMS sold about 110,000 tickets for last Saturday night’s race (there are 135,000 permanent seats at the track) and that he was hugely pleased with the crowd and the reviews for the world’s largest HDTV in its race debut. He said there would be even more race fans there for the 600.

Regarding Kyle Busch -- who Smith said he hadn’t talked to yet but planned to before Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 – Smith said: “I thought I’d call and rattle your cage a little bit, as the late Dale Earnhardt would have said… First of all, he may not have been going 128 mph – although Kyle apologized in his statement, I don’t believe he admitted to actually going that fast…. I think the punishment, whatever it is, should stay in Iredell County. Let the legal system run its course, and hopefully it won’t run amok.”

Smith noted that Busch might be “the most talented driver we’ve ever had,” as he wins regularly in all three of NASCAR’s top series. He said that if Busch were his employee he would have a long sit-down talk with him, as he felt sure Joe Gibbs would do if he hasn’t already.

Added Smith: “And then I would tell them, ‘Go and sin no more.’ I’m sure Kyle wishes that it never happened. But in different sports, you wouldn’t necessarily be suspended for something like this. Players in some stick-and-ball sports have done much worse and still played while the legal system ran its course. That’s what should happen here.”

50 comments:

Anonymous said...

Of course, Bruton wants the same treatment for his money-makers that his daughter gets.

HotJR said...

"go and sin no more"???!!! Give me a break. Seems everyone has forgotten a few years ago, Shrub was in trouble with the Henrico county police near Richmond, VA. That time he was squealing wheels and "didn't mean to do it". He should lose his license for 6 months, pay a huge fine (like we the normal people would have to pay) and pick up trash on the side of the road. As far as other drivers getting into trouble with the law while driving..don't forget what Richard Petty did up near Greensboro and running the guy off the road because he was too slow. Seems he only got a smack on the hand for that when anyone else would have been put in jail. Sports people, celebrities, etc ARE NOT ABOVE THE LAW!

Anonymous said...

Inverting the field in the All Star Race. It is the only way Jr. will ever be found running up front.

Anonymous said...

Calling Bruton Smith a racing magnate is putting it mild. He is the biggest owner of NASCAR racetracks in the world worth billions and granddady founding father of the sport YET incredibly he is dissed in Charlotte and isnt in the Hall of Fame. Orig from Oakboro in Stanley Cty he has made Charlotte his home over 50 years.

Ye are never a prophet in your hometown ...

Smith needs to buy the whole thing out from the city and show them how to make money. Govt knows nothing as usual.

Rename it The Bruton Smith NASCAR Hall of Fame.

GK said...

Bruton's just worried that if Busch gets suspended that it might impact ticket sales for his big event this weekend.

I don't condone Rowdy's behavior, but in his defense, it takes the Lexus LF-A less than 12 seconds to hit 125 from a standstill. If he had been rolling at 50 or so, the car would hit that number in roughly six seconds, though I think we'd be a bit naive to assume the officer clocked him at his fastest speed.

I say suspend him, and show drivers that they will be held responsible for off-track behavior, as well as on-track behavior.

Anonymous said...

Wrong, ISC, his biggest competitor, is the "biggest owners of NASCAR racetracks."

Anonymous said...

I say just let him read back in time to the story of Rob Moroso, another young NASCAR driver with loads of promise.

For those who don't remember, Moroso died in 1990 in an automobile crash near Mooresville after losing control of his car while speeding. And he killed the driver of another car coming in the opposite direction.

So Kyle, grow up and slow down.

Anonymous said...

Sure, let the legal system run its course in Iredell County. That would mean that Kyle would be behind bars right now charged with a felony. If I got pulled over for 128 in a 45, my work wouldn't do a thing to me (but I also don't drive for a living), however I would have gotten locked up for sure. Let equal be equal.

Hoagie58 said...

Fowler, I've always thought you were an idiot. Thanks for validating it. So, Busch should sit, for getting a speeding ticket? Should you lose a paycheck if you get a speeding ticket? A parking ticket? A jay walking ticket? His speed off the track has ZERO to do with his job or his job performance, and to suggest taking away his livelihood for a youthful indiscretion is asinine at best.

If you want to hate a driver, hate that no talent hack that drives the 88. Not only couldnt he win a race against a team of 80 year olds, but he has all the personality of a house plant.

Anonymous said...

He should have been arrested and had the book thrown at him. In general, the media, the public, and the racing worlds reaction to what to what Busch did is incredibly mild.

Just imagine the hate and venom that would be spewing if Cam Newton had gotten caught doing this.

TJ said...

In response to Hoagie 58 - If you did 128 in 45 zone you would be thrown in jail. He could have killed someone even you, JA. Sports people should not be above the law.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the very last sentence of your article. I feel that other sports do not punish players for stuff done in their personal time & NASCAR should be no different. I know at least 5 drivers who have had DUIs in which nothing was done to "on track" or by NASCAR. Why should they punish him at his job for a speeding ticket? I know I would be pissed if my job thought they could do that to me. People (obviously including you) hate KB and this is just another log on the fire for them all. JMO of course.

Hoagie58 I agree with your post!

Anonymous said...

kyle busch suck,s dale jr rules all knyle busch fan,s suck to.

Anonymous said...

SUSPEND him..it's time to start punishing the individuals that get "paid" to "play" a sport. To many kids look up these individuals and if it's OK for them and they get away with it, why can't I?

Anonymous said...

Again I say to the hypocrites posting about safety on here, how about your texting while driving, your cell phone use while driving, your eating while driving and the list goes on. That has just as much potential for a disaster with an innocent person as a professional race car driver speeding. I do not defend Kyle, I am just sick of getting my life threatened daily by all of you with your head buried in a PDA reading a meaningless text. You are just as guilty as Busch. HYPOCRITES

Anonymous said...

Who cares what old Bruton Smith does or says. He's an old man whose time has come & gone. He has one foot on a banana peel & the other in the grave.
As far as Busch. Treat him like any other 20 something that has to work for a living, not some glorified steering wheel holder who thinks he is privileged. In other words show him the inside of the Iredell county jail for a long time.

Anonymous said...

Hoagie58, your user name is appropriate, you talk like a 58 year old fat man, that has had one too many Hoagies. Kyle was not driving the company car, but he was reckless, nonetheless. Most companies penalize the employee driving reckless in the company car, so Kyle's speeding off the track does effect his work and performance. Speed limits are measured for certain roads for a reason, and going past the speed limit, puts the driver and everyone and animal on the road at the same place of youthful indiscretion, in danger. You should know, like any driver, Driver Education didn't teach people to drive careless, but they do teach to drive responsible.

Anonymous said...

Kyle Bush should not be suspended by NASCAR. What he did on a public roadway has nothing to do with NASCAR. Kyle Bush is a prima dona, who thinks because he drives a race car, he is above the law that we have to obey. He did not mind killing his wife who was with him or anyone else he met at 128 mph. What Kyle Bush needs is about seven days in jail. A fine will be nothing but pocket change to him, and his lawyer will draft his apology.

kyle (not kb) said...

Kyle is starting to concern a lot of people with his reckless behavior. Someone needs to step in and try to give him some good advice. He should have been treated like anybody else would have been. The car should have been impounded. He should have been arrested. His license should have been taken immediately. As far as NASCAR goes, at the very least he should definitely be given a long suspension. Brut the snoot just does not want to lose him for "the big race at his place."

NCdirtdigger said...

I don't blame Kyle for doing what idiots do, because he has proven over time that he is an idiot. I blame the Iredell county deputy who let him off for being derelict in his duty to protect the citizens of that county from idiots such as Busch.

Anonymous said...

Hey, that Burke motorcyclist that was clocked doing 150 mph must be Kyle's other brother!

Robert said...

what?

Anonymous said...

Suspended? I am not a Busch fan, far from it, but those who call for his suspension are just plain wrong.

I agree with Bruton, the law should take it's course, that is what it is there for. If convicted he should lose his license for whatever amout of time is specified by law, and be fined in accordence with the same laws.


Of course the fines are no more than pocket change for someone with the money he has, I would suggest a plea and have Busch do something useful for the community, that would make a lot more sense.

Anonymous said...

Proof, once again, that Nascar and anyone affiliated is pure trash.

Anonymous said...

Bruton Smith should check his own backyard before commenting on what other employers should do. Drug use runs rampant through one of his companies. Probably 1/2 the employess would test positive.

J said...

I don't have a problem with NASCAR or Joe Gibbs not suspending Busch. What I have a problem with is how the whole situation went down. Do you really think that if you, I or any other ordinary citizen were clocked at 128 in a 55 would be told, "Hey, don't do that no more" and sent on our way? No, we would be jailed and our bond would be set so high we whould have to stay in jail until the trial. Why should Kyle Busch be any different?

Anon 12:43 - I'll tell you what kind of venom would be flowing if Cam Newton had done this. The lunatic fringe would be demanding he be executed.

Anonymous said...

Busch should be man enough to sit out the next race as a personal act of contrition. He was endangering innocent people along with the life of the officer who had to stop him. As for Bruton Smith, he should not be an enabler in order to line his own pockets. He should continue to reserve his sympathy for his own family. This situation calls for Tough Love.

Anonymous said...

Not Kyles fault for being dumb. By himself is one thing putting his wife's life in danger is another. He should do jail time for endangering his wife. Fines are not the answer for these people......

Anonymous said...

Maybe it is true that Joe Gibbs and NASCAR should not do anything. I fully believe that Toyota and M&M's should demand that something be done...not exactly good PR for either.

I think that justice should run it's course in the state of NC (this is beyond a county offense) and that KB should do some time behind bars. That time should not be negotiable for work release and he should spend some time on probation that prohibits him from leaving the state.

Just like everyone else.

Anonymous said...

Scott, why even talk to Brutie the Blowhard? This huckster would prop up bin Laden to make another buck.

Anonymous said...

I am not a Kyle Bush fan. I've sen him do things that I felt he should have been suspended for. But they were ALL racetrack incidents. I agree with Smith. let the law handle it, it has nothing to with racing. If you want to suspend Bush for speeding, you have to be fair and suspend all drivers who have ever did this. Which would mean you know how many drivers would start the 600? probably ZERO.

Anonymous said...

NASCAR has a precedent for not suspending drivers who run afoul of the law on the street, so Kyle should not be suspended. Yes, the stated speed of 128mph is absurd. In the past year, AJ Almendinger and Michael Annet (Nationwide)hve been busted for DUI. Busch should show up for his court date, plead guilty if he was, and take whatever punishment is meted out by the Court.

Anonymous said...

All you people asking for him to be treated like everyone else need to realize that's exactly what's happening. Speeding in excess off 100 and reckles driving are not jailable offences. Anyone would have been given a ticket and sent on their way. Speeding only becomes more than a moving violation if you do it to evade arrest.

Truthfully many ordinary people would have gotten a break from the officer and depending on circumstance had the speed written down.

Kyle could loose his licence or he could lawyer up and get out of it, happens every day to normal people. So to me this isn't even news...

Anonymous said...

Now some claim it's all a setup by Lexus... http://jalopnik.com/5805509/did-lexus-tell-kyle-busch-to-get-a-speeding-ticket-on-purpose

Anonymous said...

I've thought this was a publicity stunt all along. If you read the bio on the LFA, it's not a production car. Even if you have the 375,000k to spend on the car, you can't have it. Lexus is hand picking who they want to own the car, and the word is, they will only put sell to high profile owners, who can place it in high profile situations. Examples would be red carpets, exotic car shows, etc. Those are untouchable to the public, but... If you put the highest profile (Toyota) driver, positive or negative, he probably generates more emotion than even JR. And clock him speeding on a back country North Carolina Road, it moves that car from the urban legend feel to the real world application of an automobile. Other than press releases and commercials, these cars seem more like urban legends until now, one shows up in the cross hairs of a law enforcement officer's radar. Can't get much more real than that.

Anonymous said...

Wonder how many race tickets the cop that pulled Kyle over got? Or how much money?

Anonymous said...

Just another example that high profile "athletes" don't occupy the same reality as do the rest of us. Most of US would be in jail, which means we probably couldn't report to work, and we might get fired. And that's assuming we could get our stock, daily drivers to even go that much faster than the speed limit. What a joke.

Anonymous said...

If Smith is so concerned why doesn't he allow drivers and others who have hot big dollar sports a few laps around the track, for a fee, of course? No need to have a hot car and not be able to try it out occasionally. After all horsepower and speed is what you pay extra for.

Tim said...

well money talks and bullshit walks so you know whats going to happen and that is what is wrong with this country today not everyone is treated equally, i don't think he should be suspended the legal system should do its job and just because he has the money to buy himself out of it is not fair he should get what any normal person without money should get, the fines and a liscense suspension and if that cost him his job temporarly he should have thought differently before driving like that on a public street. Tim Snyder, Fife Lake Michigan

Anonymous said...

I agree with Tim. Take away his NCDL, impound the car, assign appropriate fines and fees. He can still drive on the race track but his wife will have to drive him home.

Anonymous said...

This is nothing like Rob Moroso, Rob was DUI @ night in an oldsmobile.

I'm not defending speeding on public roads, especially when he can afford not to.

But A Lexus LFA can get to thos speeds and back to 0 again all within visual distance, we dont know if there are any blind spots or any side roads, or if he passed any cars.

If a race car driver can't go 130 mph in a car capable of thos speeds, then they shouldn't sell them as street cars!

I don't like KB, but please give it a rest.

Bobby said...

This isn't even the worst thing NASCAR has done this year, not suspending Annett and his OBSCENE blood alcohol content was much, much worse.

Anonymous said...

Bush, Gibbs and Smith are A holes who will line their pockets while innocent people die at the hands of these prima donnas. Was it sheer coincidence that Bush the butcher was at virtually the same site where another rich kid, Moroso the moron, killed young Tammy Williams? Would you put a publicity stunt like this past them?
The Iredell County cops can go back to writing 40 in 35s now.
But the biggest bunch of idiots and fools will be at Lowes Speedway paying a hundred bucks or so to watch the jerks and make them richer.

Anonymous said...

May 25, 2011 12:43 PM

IDIOT RETARD. Go back to the jungle. Wrong venue. Newton was caught stealing a 1500 laptop a felony in Florida so he is a felon. He took millions from Auburn under the table. Double felon. Did he go to jail?
Busch was charged for speeding and reckless driving. Has nothing to do with his day job.

Anonymous said...

So 128 mph on a public road doesn't
matter to NASCAR ?? What about going the wrong way on a one way street in Charlotte ?

Anyone remember Willie Ribbs.
He was a very talented road racer
trying to get into NASCAR.

Oh wait , I'm sorry he was black.
never mind

Ada_Reynolds32 said...

If Kyle wants to drive 128mph he has his choice of tracks to choose from. That way the only person he kills if something goes wrong is himself. On our state roads, he endangers our children, the adults, and innocent by-standers. He needs to be parked and fined. He should be in jail. Joe Gibbs should park and fine him for his immature behavior. Kyle has a history of bratish behavior and a sense of entitlement. Now he's bringing it to the our community. If NASCAR and Joe Gibbs Racing doesn't care then the NASCAR family needs to stand up and do something together about it. That shows them that kind of behavior won't be tolerated. The "I'm sorry" press conference was staged and was as sincere as Charles Manson.

NASCAR is all about money and not about the safety and doing the right thing!!!

Anonymous said...

I think that these comments should be sent to the P.D. where he got the ticket. Let them know what you think before time to go to court.

Anonymous said...

This is a letter sent to Bill France Junior, you people in North Carolina should be ashamed to let this old goat live in your state.

Mr France



Yes I am one of the Bruton Smith victims from Kentucky Speedway. I took my 78 year old grandfather to the race or should I say the traffic jam. We were 19 miles from the track at 2:40 and finally arrived at the gates at 8:50 PM. Only to be turned away and told to go home even though we had tickets that we purchased last year for this event.



My grandfather has never been to a NASCAR race but has seen every race ever broadcast on TV, we live in Elizabethtown KY. His health is such that he cant travel long distances so KY Speedway getting a race meant my grandfather would finally get to see NASCAR in person.



Bruton Smith took that dream away, his selfishness and lack of concern for the fan is completely unacceptable. He knew there would be problems, your sanctioning body knew there would be problems and still you granted him a race and I guess hoped for the best. I have been to over 100 NASCAR races and in fact was the 2001 NASCAR Mini Sportsman Champion at Wenatchee Valley Speedway in Wenatchee Washington. I also worked as the marketing director at Skagit Speedway in Washington. I understand the industry very well and your continued endorsement of the bafoon of a promoter is hurting the sport.



There is a unique opportunity for NASCAR to earn some very positive PR out of this and regain faith in your organization. You have a chance to make sports history here by doing something completely unprecidented and something Im sure your father would have done. Fine Bruton Smith enough so the fans that got screwed by him can get a full refund. Penalize him just as you would a driver or a team for cheating. If he fails to pay the fine then strip him of his race dates. If you would do this then NASCAR will no doubt take center stage over all sports news and would gain tremendous fan confidence and support. Show the fans that NASCAR is about them and they will return in droves. Do nothing and we will associate NASCAR and Bruton Smith as the same, thieves without a concious. Do it quickly or the window will close, as it stands now I will never return to a track that has a NASCAR event of any type, prove to me that you want and deserve my business.



You and I both know that the resolution Smith has offered is no more than another way for him to make money off of people he already screwed. He is an embarrassment to NASCAR and should be charged with federal embezzlement. You should be equally disappointed in your decision to give him a race know damn good and well the infrastructure would lead to this result. Refund the money you stole before it is too late. Im sure NASCAR got its money for the show, you took stolen money Bill that makes you and your organization an accessory to a crime!

tablet pc barato said...

Hey, there is a lot of useful info above!

xlpharmacy said...

I think that it was a drastic and exaggerated decision.