Monday, June 06, 2011

Richard Childress Tries, Can't Convert Kyle Busch Into Sympathetic Figure

Let's recap these events.

Kyle Busch is notorious among drivers and fans for a hot temper on the track, but also has a reputation for being one of the most charitable men in his sport ... almost always willing to help out other drivers' causes, as well as his own. Despite that work off the track, Busch is far and away the most disliked driver in the sport. It's not even really close.

Richard Childress, a 65-year-old man who owns vehicles in NASCAR's major touring series, is perhaps best-known as the man who was Dale Earnhardt's friend and car owner and now owns cars driven by the likes of Kevin Harvick and Clint Bowyer. He's also one of the most respected figures in NASCAR.

So when worlds collide, and Childress is the one allegedly instigating a physical altercation with Busch, what's a guy to think?

After Saturday's Camping World Truck Series race at Kansas, it was indeed Childress going all Nolan Ryan on Busch, who unwittingly was set to play the role of Robin Ventura.

We can't confirm that things went down the same way Saturday. In fact, it seems it was Childress who did all the work.

According to reports, the 65-year-old Childress approached the 26-year-old Busch in the garage area after the race, took off his watch, punched Busch in the face and then put him in a headlock.

NASCAR did their part to make it clear that Busch, who is on probation after trying to kill Kevin Harvick (possible exaggeration), did nothing wrong Saturday.

"We concluded that the driver of the 18 truck, Kyle Busch, did nothing to provoke or to cause the reactions, that in our opinion, would violate the probation," Helton said. "He did nothing that warranted the actions of Richard Childress."

Again ... Kyle Busch did nothing wrong. Nothing. Notta. He was the race-car-driver-gets-punched-in-the-face-by-old-man equivalent of an innocent bystander.

And yet people tweet stuff like this.

Oh, wait. That's me.

You get the point.

Busch is not the sympathetic figure here, even though NASCAR wants you to know he was attacked.

By a 65-year-old man.

And Childress knew what he was doing. This wasn't a heat of the moment thing, or he wouldn't have thought to take his watch off.

Yet Busch is still a jerk in the eyes of most NASCAR fans. If this can't cure it, nothing will.

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