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Kurt Busch Looking at Options After Penske Racing Split: NASCAR Fan Reaction
Kurt Busch is calling the split from Penske Racing a "mutual agreement," but he may still be looking at other options for the 2012 NASCAR season. However, his opportunities are limited. The decision comes shortly after Busch's controversial expletive filled rant at Dr. Jerry Punch on Nov. 20.
The End for Busch and Penske
Neither Kurt Busch nor Penske Racing will be elaborating on the details of the mutual agreement that led to their separation. However, Busch's rant at Dr. Jerry Punch and the subsequent $50,000 fine from NASCAR obviously played a role in the decision. His volatile history and behavior are impossible to ignore. The sponsors also heavily influence NASCAR teams, so they may be trying to salvage an image problem by cutting out Busch. Shell reiterated its support of Penske Racing after the announcement that Busch was leaving.
Seeing a Psychologist
Kurt Busch admitted that he has been "working with a sports psychologist" to help him handle his problems. Although I am happy to see he is finally getting some professional help, I think he should have asked for treatment years ago. Now, he has basically destroyed his career. After the split with Penske racing, it will not be an easy task to find another team.
Looking at Other Options
Busch has not announced retirement or taking time off. However, he has also refused to provide details on searching for a new team for the 2012 NASCAR season. Is Kurt Busch quitting? In a video posted on his official website, he claims he wants to put "fun back into racing" and talks positively about the future. He may not get to prove if the changes he claims to be making are legitimate. After essentially being fired from Penske, other teams are not lining up to sign him.
He may not have many options in this case. Other drivers are having a hard time finding teams for the next season while sponsorships are being lost or reduced. The stagnant economy coupled with lower NASCAR ticket sales has created a difficult environment for drivers. Busch may find himself out of the 2012 NASCAR season and without a replacement ride.
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Growing up in Indiana, Lana developed a love for motorsports at an early age. She follows NASCAR, IndyCar and Formula One. Follow her @Lana_Bandoim on Twitter.
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