The Backstretch Blog: It's time for Kyle to grow up

So Tuesday, Kyle Busch was cited for driving 128 mph in a 45. My quick Missouri math tells me that is three times the speed limit.

Let me start by saying, if you or I were going 83 miles over the speed limit, we would probably be arrested. And the fact that Busch got away with just a citation is part of the problem. It fuels the idea in his head that he is the invincible "Rowdy" Busch. That he can do this sort of dumb stuff. And police, NASCAR, sponsors and fans continuing to make excuses for him, are not doing him any favors.

Let me take this time right here to say, I like Kyle Busch. I think the sport despertely needs Kyle Busch. He wears the black hat with pride, and if the sport was full only of good guys, that would be boring. But being "bad" has it's limits when other people's lives are at risk.

This incident and the recent incident on the track where Busch rammed a driverless car into the wall on a busy pit row post race, shows that he gives not thought to how his actions might affect other people.

When Busch was pulled over in Mooresville, he reportedly told police "it's just a toy." Just a toy? That is your response when you have done something so inherently reckless?

"I was test driving a new sports car and I got carried away," Busch, who was stopped between the towns of Troutman and Mooresville, said in a statement. "I went beyond the speed I should have been going on a public road. I apologize to the public, my fans, sponsors and race teams for my lack of judgment.

"I take responsibility for my actions, and I can assure you that something like this will never happen again."

I really don't like apologizes. Want to show you are truly sorry? Learn from the mistake and do not repeat it. A concept Busch is clearly not familiar with.

You know how you make sure it never happens again? Park him. Joe Gibbs Racing, the team Busch drives for has yet to comment on what happened. I have a tremendous respect for Mr. Gibbs. Maybe more so than any other single person in the sport. If he wants to do what's right, he needs to stop this seemingly escalating pattern.

No matter what Busch is getting off easy. Even for a professional driver, driving that fast could have had a tragic ending. This is not a closed track. Any number of external hazards could have caused him or someone else to be seriously injured even killed. He got lucky it was a cop that stopped him, and not another car pulling out in front of him.

I think that Kyle Busch could be the most talent driver we have ever seen on the track. But he will never reach his full potential until he grows up. And it's clear he's having a tough time getting there.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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