They’re calling it the “silly era,” and frankly, that’s one of the dumbest things we’ve heard in a while.
Kyle Busch at Richard Childress Racing?
Until this summer, this would be funny for a number of reasons, especially for those who remember those infamous three words:
“Keep my watch.”
It was 11 years ago at Kansas Speedway when a completely exhausted Richard Childress started jawing with Busch in the garage area after a Truck Series race at Kansas. Childress was 65, Bush 26.
Busch had been on Childress’ nerves for a year or more, then he blew out an RCR truck during the mis-tagged relaxation lap at Kansas.
“Enough,” Childress said apparently.
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After the requisite verbal sparring failed to resolve anything, Childress removed his watch and, according to onlookers at the time, put Bush in a headlock and gave him some what-ifs.
It must have been a good thing, because NASCAR fined Childress $150,000 for his actions and placed him on probation for the remainder of this season.
Right, Childress was once basically ordered to stay away from Kyle Busch, and now this? Time heals all wounds, it seems.
The same applies to the needs of the contract.
Kyle needs a new ride soon
Busch’s longtime sponsor, M&M’s, is leaving after this season, and team owner Joe Gibbs apparently can’t find a deep-pocketed replacement. Well, Busch is rumored to be able to go here and there…but RCR?
Childress, whose No. 3 Chevy won Sunday’s race at Daytona, was asked about the rumor afterward and certainly didn’t shake it down.
“Kyle is a great racing driver,” he said. “He and I talked. We put all our differences behind us a while ago.
“He’s a great racing driver. It will definitely give him a good ride somewhere.”
The obvious sequel: Will it be at Richard Childress Racing?
“You said that, I didn’t,” Childress replied.
Man, talk about a lot of moving parts. With this, as a wise man once said, it’s like trying to hold six ping-pong balls under water with five fingers.
Childress has two cars on the Cup team. Grandson Auston Dillon is No. 3 and going nowhere. But Tyler Reddick is in the team’s other car, the No. 8, and recently angered the organization by signing a deal with 23XI Racing — the Denny Hamlin-Michael Jordan team — but that deal doesn’t go into effect until the 2024 season .
Childress would probably prefer to cut ties with Reddick after this season, but things aren’t always that easy, especially with signed contracts.
However, there is the Kurt Busch factor. Kurt, Kyle’s older brother, has been sidelined for six weeks with concussion symptoms and his return no longer looks assured.
If Kurt finishes or decides he doesn’t want to return for another full season, that leaves the 23XI’s No. 45 spot open. Maybe Kyle could land there, but as of 2024 that car is reserved for Reddick.
RC learned a hard lesson about an old Rolex
So, back to RCR capabilities. That wouldn’t seem likely in recent years as the Childress team has failed to keep up with the current blue-blood teams owned by Gibbs, Rick Hendrick, Roger Penske and Stewart-Haas.
But Reddick’s performance this season (two wins, eight top-5s) shows there’s potential for RCR. Put Kyle Busch in that seat, and there’s no telling what could happen.
oh hold my watch?
Let’s just say, if you ever piss off a strapping old man and start taking off his watch, you better buckle up. Childress, on the popular Dale Earnhardt Jr. podcast. a few years ago, he explained the time-honored practice.
Looks like he learned that the hard way, years ago at Daytona Beach during Speedweeks.
“We’d go out to bars and have a good time and everything,” Childress said. “We were at an old bar in Daytona one night and a big fight broke out. I happened to be on it.
“I had a Rolex. The first Rolex I ever owned. I lost it in this fight. From then on you always take off your watch.”
Always? God RC, how many of these things have you been a part of?
This article originally appeared in The Daytona Beach News-Journal: Kyle Busch and Richard Childress; Former NASCAR feuds may work together