Racer Busch suspended for verbal abuse of reporter
Kurt Busch is the 2004 NASCAR season champion.
June 5th, 2012
06:35 AM ET

Racer Busch suspended for verbal abuse of reporter

Former stock car season champion Kurt Busch won't be racing this weekend in Pocono, Pennsylvania, after NASCAR suspended him for verbally abusing a reporter following Saturday's race in Dover, Delaware.

Busch was already on NASCAR probation following a confrontation with an opponent's crew in Darlington, South Carolina, in May.

When Sporting News reporter Bob Pockrass asked Busch on Saturday whether being on probation affected his performance on the track, Busch berated Pockrass.

"It refrains me from not beating the (expletive) out of you right now because you ask me stupid questions," Busch replied. "But since I'm on probation, I suppose that's improper to say as well."

Busch's probation was to have ended July 25. NASCAR has extended that for the rest of the year as well as suspending Busch for any races this weekend in Pocono, according to a NASCAR press release.

"Busch violated Section 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing; violation of probation; verbal abuse to a media member) of the 2012 NASCAR Rule Book," the press release said.

In a statement, Busch accepted his punishment, according to a report on NASCAR.com.

"I put them in a box," he said of NASCAR officials. "They had to take action, and it's my fault for putting them in this position. I apologize for the comments I made to Bob Pockrass."

Busch has 24 career victories and was the 2004 series champion.

Can Busch's career survive his temper?

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Filed under: Auto racing • Sports
soundoff (303 Responses)
  1. SarahTonin

    I'm sorry but I'd like to pat Kurt Busch on the back. It's about time somebody addressed the stupid questions that the media bothers these guys with. I was watching the Heat/Celtics game the other night and the lady reporter that corners these NBA guys to ask them questions should have her microphone placed where it will do some good. Many times she will launch into some lengthy statement before asking her question and these guys are sweating profusely, dying to get to the locker room and I wish they had the ba11s that Busch has!

    June 5, 2012 at 8:39 am | Report abuse |
  2. Old Racer

    @Billy Bob. You are correct, sir. It costs big bucks to make race engines that run on ultra high octane fuel. NASCAR, like America herself has generally become, is a cheapskate.
    Example: It costs more to race one Formula One race car than it costs to run all of NASCAR! And your avg. American would rather save a penny at China-Mart than shop USA-Mart.

    June 5, 2012 at 8:40 am | Report abuse |
  3. Jim

    NASCAR needs to worry about getting fans to the races not what Kurt is doing.or saying. They all say it . I guess if it was a Hendrick drivers ( which is most of them ) there wouldn't have been a thing said about just a slap on the wrist. If it had been me I would have do the same thing or worse. What ever happened to the good ole days in NASCAR? Some of these reporters need more thhan a little verbal abuse . just listen sometime to some of the dumb questions they ask.

    June 5, 2012 at 8:42 am | Report abuse |
  4. Old Racer

    Lookit the old lady straining herself over a typo, while ignoring the entire post! Like a fat little girl at the dinner table whose mother had prepared a fine meal. "No! I want Taco Bell! Waaaaaa. I want Taco Bell."

    June 5, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  5. Old Racer

    When two men fight-over whose bag of crack cocaine it is, for example, the color of their skin matters not and so should not be mentioned in the news. But CNN DOES mention it each and every time...fanning the flames of racism that would otherwise burn-out on their own.

    June 5, 2012 at 8:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Vipergtsrgt1


      June 5, 2012 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
  6. Oldskool

    Who's this guy think he is... A.J. Foyt?

    June 5, 2012 at 8:53 am | Report abuse |
  7. Private Guy

    Busch will never learn but get rid of dumb reporters. They do ask the stupid questions. Can drivers just walk away from them with no comment?

    June 5, 2012 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Concerned123

      Kyle does it all the time if he did not win the race.

      June 5, 2012 at 9:01 am | Report abuse |
    • NC_Skins

      Actually, it was a legit question. He was simply asking him if the probation was causing him to race differently. The question wasn't stupid. The reaction was very much stupid.

      June 5, 2012 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Carol

      i agree!!!

      June 5, 2012 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
  8. Bill N.

    It's come to the point where something like this had to be done. These elitist athletes think that because they make so much money that they are better, and have the right to act as they choose. If things like this aren't taken seriously, and the culprit isn't punished then it gets way out of hand, and you have no control. And, rememeber, this isn't the first time that this has been a problem with Kurt Busch. If he keeops it up he'll end up doing his brother Kyle a favor. People will forget about his transgrssions of the past.

    June 5, 2012 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
    • mwolve

      Bill N., athletes, coaches too, have been reacting to reporters like this for decades. This is nothing new. It stretches back at least to the '70s. I would bet it happened before then too. If you go further back, reporters used to be buddy buddy with athletes, going out to drink with them and sharing stories. Back then, athletes, and other folks, did not have nearly as many reporters to deal with, much less having to answer the same question over and over and over again. They also did not have to worry about reporters becoming a name. It was about the story not about the reporter becoming known. Furthermore, drivers and athletes are not suit and tie desk jockeys and should not be expected to act the same. They are simply entertainers. Let them entertain.

      June 5, 2012 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
  9. Kevin Nivek

    The Busch brothers are a large part of why I no longer watch NASCAR.

    June 5, 2012 at 9:07 am | Report abuse |
  10. Mike

    Kurt Busch beating the "explitive" out of anybody is actually funny. Unless of course the reporter was a woman. I'd about expect that out of Busch.
    But I'd even doubt he'd win that fight either.

    June 5, 2012 at 9:08 am | Report abuse |
  11. Noah

    Well Busch messed up but I he did do the right thing and apologize. I think all of us can relate to having a bad day or a bad week and saying something dumb. Not excusing his behavior, but in the grand scheme of all the things going on in the world, this really isn't a major deal. Maybe a weekend off will be a good thing for Busch? We all can use a break from work at times.

    June 5, 2012 at 9:08 am | Report abuse |
  12. Rodger

    sad to see that nascar is now going all PC, i know it is the current rules, but i think it is time to pull back from all this PC crap, if the reported complained to nascar, he should be banned from the track for being a wuss.

    June 5, 2012 at 9:08 am | Report abuse |
  13. S.R

    Busch doesn't look like he would be much in a real fight. He acts like that because he knows there will be people there to stop the fight. It's easy to act tough when you know you won't actually fight the guy!!!

    June 5, 2012 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
  14. HerbH

    So much for fre speach in America....

    Stupid questions from reporters, and bad reporting is everywhere!

    June 5, 2012 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Josef F

      Sorry, Einstein. This is not a matter of "fre speach" (whatever the hell that is). There are NASCAR rules in place against this sort of thing. Kurt Busch violated those rules. He is now suffering the consequences of those actions.

      June 5, 2012 at 9:25 am | Report abuse |
    • CP in FL

      HerbH – Kirt's "fre speach" has not been in infringed. Free speech means that the government cannot stop someone from speaking. It does not mean you can say whatever you want at work and get away with it.

      June 5, 2012 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
  15. Paul

    Well said !!! Nascar is "RULED TO DEATH", it shows in the stands. Bring back the Nascar I grew up on. I find it very hard to watch a race these days.

    June 5, 2012 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |
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