Fans love to boo Kyle Busch so much that they didn’t hold back when he was introduced before Saturday’s Nationwide Series race wearing a red and pink firesuit adorned with kittens, bunnies, butterflies and baby seals while walking on stage with a cute little girl.
It’s pretty hateful when fans boo little animals and a kid because of guilt by association.
Kyle’s firesuit complemented the pink Toyota he drove to a ninth-place finish in the Nationwide Series race in Richmond, Va. The cute kid he escorted was the actress in a popular Toyota commercial.
The boo birds who Kyle loves to rile never can accuse him of lacking a sense of humor or not loving kids.
They also can’t deny he’s the best racer in NASCAR. This year, the 25-year-old has won four of 10 Camping World Truck Series races, 10 of the 22 in Nationwide and three of 26 in Sprint Cup. That’s 17 wins with three crew chiefs in three series.
He’s going to battle brother Kurt to the wire for the championship, and one of them will win it.
If Kyle is feeling pressure this week, he didn’t sound like it when we talked Wednesday afternoon. If he is feeling pressure, he’s hiding it as much as he’d like to hide that pink firesuit.
The Las Vegas native has a few things on his mind but knows his biggest prize will come on the last day of the year.
Like all racers, Kyle swears he never looks beyond the next race. But when it comes to life, he seems to be thinking as much about December as September.
He has NASCAR races over the next 10 weekends, the Champion’s Week activities Dec. 1-3 in Las Vegas and a wedding with Samantha Sarcinella on Dec. 31 in Chicago.
On Tuesday he arrived in New York City, where he spent Wednesday fulfilling media obligations for NASCAR to promote the Chase. Then it was off to Bristol, Conn., on Thursday for various appearances on ESPN, after which he and Samantha were to fly to Loudon, N.H., for a truck race and Sunday’s start to the Sprint Cup Chase.
And for the past week, an ESPN film crew has been imbedded with the couple to document their lives for the five-part reality show “Riding Shotgun: Kyle Busch” that has aired this week on ESPN2. The last episode is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. today, but it’s good enough that you can count on it being replayed.
And there’s his rookie Kyle Busch Motorsports team in the NASCAR truck series for which he shares driving the No. 18 Toyota with Brian Ickler. The truck is second in owners points. Ickler will drive it in the Sept. 25 Smith’s 350k at Las Vegas Motor Speedway while Kyle races in Dover, Del.
Also high on the list for him is the Kyle Busch Foundation, which Samantha oversees. Founded in 2006, its mission is to provide essential tools for less fortunate children throughout the country, including Girls and Boys Town of Nevada in Las Vegas. The couple are intent on providing special Christmas parties and gifts for hundreds of kids.
Kyle and Samantha urge fans to go to WinKylesTundra.com to buy raffle tickets for chances to win his personal truck. All proceeds will help the kids.
No one can boo that effort, and even his detractors should step up and buy tickets. And how can anyone boo a guy wearing a red and pink firesuit adorned with kittens, bunnies and baby seals?
Where’s People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals when you need it?
Jeff Wolf’s motor sports column is published Friday in the Las Vegas Review-Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0247. Visit Wolf’s motor sports blog at lvrj.com/blogs/heavypedal/ throughout the week.