Kyle Busch’s post-race press conference in Charlotte early last Monday actually lasted all week.
Busch who led laps in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup series Coca-Cola 600, finished second. The runner-up finish came a week after his All-Star race win and a $1 million payday. After the finish Busch, as required by NASCAR, visited the infield media center. He was asked a single question.
“I’m not surprised about anything” he said tersely. “Congratulations.”
He then dropped the microphone and shortly thereafter left the media center.
The short clip of that ‘press conference’ made its way across the internet all week, with many criticizing Busch.
Friday was a much better day for Busch. He won his first Dover pole, and his first of the year. Thus it was a much less upset Busch who met with the media afterwards. He calmly explained what had happened at Charlotte.
“I sat in my car for a few seconds and kind of dwelled on the loss a little bit extra before the TV interview,” he said. “But then as I got to the media center that time kind of grew and I realized what we had missed out on and that was the opportunity to win a Coke 600.
“Driving as hard as you do for 600 miles and passing the 78 car, I thought that was for the win. Then watching the 48 car run out of fuel and then hearing the 3 was in front of us, you were hoping that he would run out for your own sake, but he didn’t.
“There’s nothing to take away from his (Austin Dillon) win but you know it’s a marquee event and a big one to win \and I’ve won two of them, that would have been the third and that would have only left me with the Daytona 500. Of course also too, the other aspect I looked at; we won the All-Star race and we were going for the sweep at Charlotte, so there was a lot of things riding on the line that meant a lot to me. That would have been special to me and I guess I should care less about those sort of things and not show that sort of emotion but all in all that’s what was on the line for us and we weren’t able to achieve so it was pretty disappointing.”
Busch was later asked what he thought of those who had criticized him.
“You know there’s haters in every form,” Busch said. “Dale Jr. has haters, I do, Austin Dillon did; people aren’t respecting the fact that he won a race because it was fuel mileage. He won, he has the ring, he’s got the trophy. It’s his. It doesn’t necessarily matter sometimes, how you win these races, or how you lose these races, that’s just the way the day comes out of it.
“You know certainly different people show their emotions in different ways, and unfortunately for me mine had never been, very, gracious and I don’t know that it ever will be. I’m kind of learning that as the days go on; when my son is two years old, I see where it came from, it’s genetic (chuckles).
“I’m sorry that’s just who I am, that’s what I was given, and if there’s anyone to blame, it’s probably the guy upstairs. I mean I can probably get better and go to training and classes and everything else but…it is the way it is.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to have been blessed to have the opportunity that I’m in, I’ve got great sponsors and partners that are with me and they’ve stuck with me through a lot worse than what happened this week and that’s through relationships. People that are close to me understand me and know me and know who I am outside the racetrack as personable person, as a friend and that’s why I’m able to continue to have the relationships and sponsorships that I do.”