Friday, May 27, 2011
NASCAR notes: Kyle Busch has not been penalized by team yet for traffic violations
Kyle Busch was cited for going 128 mph in a 45 mph zone in Troutman, N.C. He has apologized several times this week.
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The two-lane road winds and dips through the countryside in Troutman, N.C. Double yellow lines mark much of the road. About every seventh-tenths of a mile is a speed limit sign. It reads 45 mph.
This is where Kyle Busch was cited for speeding and reckless driving Tuesday after he was clocked going 128 mph in a $375,000 yellow Lexus sports car.
"It is serious," car owner Joe Gibbs said Thursday, "and when you think about the things ... that could have happened."
Busch apologized Tuesday via a statement and reiterated it Thursday in a news conference, admitting to a "lack of judgment."
Gibbs said no decision had been made on how to discipline the driver. Busch will race this weekend.
"I'm hoping that somehow out of this, something positive will come out of it," Gibbs said. "It may be different organizations that reach out to young people driving and reckless driving. For all of us at Joe Gibbs Racing, I'm hoping that there's something maybe I could do going forward."
NASCAR does not plan to discipline him. Even if Busch loses his license temporarily, it won't impact his ability to race. NASCAR does not require its competitors to have a state driver's license. Busch's court date is set for July 20.
For as much as Busch apologized Thursday -- he used the word "sorry" four times, "apologize" twice and stated a lack of judgment six times in a 14-minute interview session -- he didn't go into details about why he drove so fast.
Older brother Kurt Busch supported his brother but noted that Kyle would learn a lesson from this.
"I feel like he definitely understands the mistake that he made and that speed is supposed to be saved for here at the race track and putting on a good show," Kurt Busch said. "All of us drivers have a responsibility as being role models to what we can teach our youth on the roadways. There are posted speed limits and rules and laws."
Jimmie Johnson understood Kyle Busch's desire to go fast.
"We as drivers aren't necessarily wired the same, but I'd have to say that anybody that buys a high performance vehicle gets in it and stands on the gas," Johnson said. "Maybe not in the same situation, but that's why you buy whatever car."
Kevin Harvick, though, could not defend Busch's actions.
"I think some people are their own worst enemy when it comes to being responsible as a person or as a business person or anything that comes with life's responsibilities," Harvick said.
"I've never driven a vehicle 120-plus down the highway. It could put a lot of people in a bad situation."
Bayne discusses medical mystery
Carl Edwards was with Trevor Bayne as Mayo Clinic doctors discussed with Bayne what caused his double vision and has kept the Daytona 500 winner from racing for more than a month.
"I felt like I didn't belong in that room, I needed to leave," Edwards said. "[Bayne] said, 'No, let me show you exactly what we found out.' "
All doctors could do was eliminate things. They could not -- and have not -- found a cause despite all sorts of tests.
"Spinal taps at midnight is not exactly what you are looking forward to, but it happens," Bayne said Thursday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. "At one point I had like 16 needles in my body at once and shock pads and stuff that I didn't even know existed."
Despite the mystery --Bayne likely will go back to the Mayo Clinic in three or four months for a checkup -- Bayne said doctors have told him he's fit for racing.
"Their biggest hope is that it was an isolated event that is temporary and is gone now," Bayne said. "It could be just a series of events where you get a bug bite and your immune system is down and we had been running for a couple of months hard every day after Daytona and it wears down your immune system.
"I heard somebody say cancer and leukemia and those things but that is not even a word that I heard in the hospital. They have ruled out all those things."
He will skip this weekend's races at Charlotte but will run the Nationwide race next weekend at Chicagoland Speedway and return to the Cup series in two weeks at Michigan.
Kimi Raikkonen is eying his Sprint Cup debut next month at Infineon Raceway but nothing is set yet. Raikkonen tested Robby Gordon's Cup car earlier this week at Virginia International Raceway.
Raikkonen is making his Nationwide debut this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway a week after he ran in the truck race in his NASCAR debut. Raikkonen has been running with Kyle Busch's team but that relationship might not continue.
Brad Keselowski scored his second career pole Thursday for Sunday's Coca-Cola 600 after a lap of 192.089 mph.
AJ Allmendinger will start second (191.693 mph). He's followed by points leader Carl Edwards (191.686 mph), Denny Hamlin (191.367) and Jeff Burton (191.245). Defending race winner, Kurt Busch, qualified 26th at 188.844 mph.
There's no track activity today. Cars are back on the track Saturday.