Had longtime sponsor Mars Inc. and its own M&Ms brand made a decision to continue its NASCAR sponsorship instead of leave sport third , season, the ultimate years of Kyle Buschs Cup Series career could have likely played out because the last 15 driving the No. 18 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing.
Certainly, there is the probability of a lot more victories ahead as well as perhaps championships within an already Hall of Fame-worthy career.
However now faced with the truth of having to displace a multi-million-dollar sponsorship to cover Buschs salary as a premier driver, JGR was struggling to find think of a comparable option, which forced Busch to explore avenues.
So when happened in NASCAR often, the unlikely finished up becoming possible.
Busch, 37, announced Tuesday he’d join Richard Childress Racing you start with the 2023 season and drive the organizations No. 8 Chevrolet as a teammate to Austin Dillon and least for the present time Tyler Reddick, who have to proceed to a third as-yet undetermined team.
RCR earlier this year announced it had found the 2023 option on Reddicks contract to operate a vehicle the No. 8. Shortly thereafter Reddick informed RCR he’d join 23XI Racing in 2024.
Reddicks early announcement of his 2024 plans didn’t sit well with RCR and its own no wonder why. Reddick has proven among the best up-and-coming talents in the Cup Series, earning his first two series wins this year.
Another RCR champion?
So RCR, which last won a Cup Series championship in 1994 with late Dale Earnhardt, considered an equally controversial NASCAR star to keep its organization on the upswing.
It didnt take miss Childress, who was simply present at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C., on Tuesday for Buschs announcement, to create up the comparison.
When I was up there with Kyle and we first started talking and we discussed championships and we discussed winning races, I viewed him in his eye, and I had seen that try Dale Earnhardt Sr.s eye that hes hungry were likely to win, Childress said.
Id seen that look before, and watching Kyle, Ive watched his talent since he were only available in the Busch (now Xfinity) Series, and precisely how he handles the automobile, the automobile control, just how he drives the automobile and take-no-prisoners attitude.
Thats the Dale Earnhardt-style I was familiar with racing with, and I believe Kyle has that modern-day design of racing that Dale Earnhardt had in his time.
Asked what he considered the comparison to Earnhardt, Busch said, Certainly, its flattering. But additionally pointed out there’s only 1 Dale Earnhardt.
That’s true just as there’s only 1 Kyle Busch and which may be just what RCR needs at this time.
Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing, M&M’s Toyota Camry
Photo by: Nigel Kinrade / NKP / Motorsport Images
Busch said his priority so far as the continuation of his Cup career goes was to get a business where he could win and compete right away.
Its just a little late in his career for Busch to become foundation of a fresh organization and frankly with him still along with his game, it could be a waste of talent to take action.
In recent seasons, RCR has returned to a team that may wins races a lot more which means this year with the debut of another Gen car.
That has been enough for Busch.
Whenever we first sat down and had discussion concerning this opportunity, it had been easy, Busch said.
Just seeing their overall culture being around Richard, talking with Austin (Dillon) and getting the possiblity to just consider the whole picture of whats going on with RCR lately, and I felt enjoy it was a no-brainer.
A complex relationship
To access this aspect, Childress and Busch first had to overcome a few of their very own rocky NASCAR history.
In 2011, Childress, within a physical altercation in the garage at Kansas Speedway, became popular his watch and punched Busch. NASCAR fined Childress $150,000 and placed him on probation for all of those other season therefore was made the Hold My Watch incident.
But as the saying goes, time heals all wounds.
As a signing bonus, Childress on Tuesday presented Busch with a fresh Rolex.
Do you want to hold my watch? Childress asked Busch as he presented the gift.
Absolutely, Busch replied.