Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Revenge is best served cold

In virtually every automobile race ever run, one driver or more as done something that irked other drivers. Somebody got a little too high coming out of the corner. Somebody bumped someone from behind for no apparent reason. The reasons for these incidents are as infinite as the stars in the sky, but the excuses given by drivers apparently is even more infinite.

Juan Pablo Montoya and Kyle Busch got in a bit of a tiff with each other at Loudon, New Hampshire on Sunday. According to eyewitness accounts, Kyle and Juan had been battling each other for several laps. From at least one eyewitness, Kyle repeatedly banged his 18 Toyota into the side of the side of the 42 Dodge. Apparently, under caution, Juan had enough of that and took a drastic left turn and hit the 18 and spun him, and subsequently got taken out by the 18 car.

In post race interviews, Juan Pablo Montoya admitted that he had indeed hit the 18 car intentionally. Nascar decided that they had to step in and administer some harsh punishment. Juan was penalized 2 laps. Kyle acted mystified by the 42 car's driver's actions. Kyle obviously was a victim of a reckless driver's ineptitude.

There's an old saying that goes something like people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. I've watched every single race in which Kyle Busch has participated this season, in all three Nascar series. I've seen Kyle wreck a lot of cars, and I've seen Kyle ruin a lot of other driver's chances to win or to even have a good finish. Kyle hasn't been penalized even once for his idiotic driving style, and remains in the lead in Sprint Cup points. Nascar seems to enjoy having a new villain in the sport, and is likely to let Kyle get away with his destructive driving style.

Nascar has always had it's villains and it's good guys. It's the black hats versus the white hats. There are varying degrees of black hats, but Kyle Busch's hat most assuredly is the blackest of all. I'm not squeamish when it comes to rough driving. I was an Earnhardt fan after all. But Dale drove with a purpose and a set of specialized skills that sometimes meant roughing up another driver to achieve his ultimate purpose, which of course was winning. Kyle just looks like he takes it very personally when another driver races him hard on the track. If he gets bumped, he slams the other car, just on principle, apparently. He would be making more ground up by just ignoring it and going by, but apparently the kid in the glass house thinks he will earn more respect by roughing up everyone on the track.

If that is what Kyle is thinking, he's wrong. Drivers, crew chiefs, and owners become easily offended when their expensive sheet metal is bent by a kid with a chip on his shoulder. Is Kyle really a kid, you might ask? I can call him one. Kyle is 23 years old. I'm 44 years old. This is not my first rodeo, so to speak. Kyle reminds me of a genuine spoiled brat. When caught in some transgression or other, Kyle always has an excuse. He never did it. He has no idea why that other car spun when he hit him. Apparently it's not ok to race hard with certain other drivers.

The truth is, Kyle takes very much offense when ANY other driver races him hard. He doesn't seem to realize that his false accusations fall on deaf ears most of the time. Nascar may be enjoying the bonanza of stories and TV ratings right now, but sooner or later, someone will blatantly put the golden boy from Las Vegas into the wall. It will happen with what used to be called 'extreme prejudice'. It won't be pretty either. Kyle's arrogance and attitude will eventually be his downfall. If he were smart, he'd take a lesson in humility from his older brother Kurt. Kurt had to learn his lessons the hard way, and the hard way seems to be the destiny for the younger Busch to learn his lessons too.

Revenge is a fact in Nascar. Kyle Busch, you'd better watch your back.

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