Why Kyle Busch should be 
granted the injury waiver

Photo by John Harrelson/NASCAR via Getty Images

Kyle Busch turns laps at Charlotte Motor Speedway.


By Brandon Caldwell
Staff Reporter
May 16, 2015


DISCLAIMER: Opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.


Since his injury in the season opening NASCAR Xfinity Series race in Daytona, which caused Kyle Busch to have a broken leg, and miss the first part of the season, it’s been greatly debated whether or not Kyle Busch should be granted an injury waiver for the 2015 season to get him into the Chase.

My initial reaction, is the same reaction as I have right now about this topic. Why not? See, unlike 95 percent of the fan base, I don’t have it out for Kyle Busch. I don’t believe he’s a bad guy. He’s a tremendous talent that has made some idiotic decisions yes, but he’s a person, and he’s real. He doesn’t try to be anyone else and I respect that.

However, you all would be infuriated if my admiration for Kyle Busch played into my thinking on whether or not he should be granted a waiver. Yet, you still let your hate take over, and argue pointless arguments that line up with a lot of other drivers, whom you all didn’t say “boo” about.

Why should he be granted a waiver? Well it’s simple. He was seriously injured in an accident. Yes, I get that he missed the first eleven races of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, but NASCAR has never specified how many races a driver can and cannot miss in order to be granted a waiver.

When Denny Hamlin missed a race in 2014 due to having metal in his eye, at Auto Club Speedway, he was granted an injury waiver because of he couldn’t physically drive. Well, that’s the same as Kyle Busch, but in the court of public opinion, Denny Hamlin is a nicer guy than Kyle Busch, so he could have taken as much time as he wanted, like he did in 2013 when he missed four races, and was still granted a waiver because he was hurt. I guess four isn’t too much, but eleven is, even though people have been shouting about Kyle Busch’s waiver since the Daytona 500… Yeah, makes sense.

Then there’s Tony Stewart’s waiver last season. Knee-jerk reaction, people wanted Tony Stewart kicked out of the sport. People we calling him a murderer, people were saying that he should “never race again.” Three weeks later, after the facts played themselves out, and Tony was found to be innocent, everyone was okay with his waiver too. 

Kyle Busch

Tony Stewart CHOSE to miss those races. Yes, maybe I’m insensitive, and yes, I’ve never accidentally killed someone in a race car. But neither have you, and you were okay with the waiver. Tony was physically okay to drive, and was still granted a waiver.

And then this year. Kyle’s brother Kurt missed the first three races of the 2015 season, due to a suspension on being investigated for a domestic violence claim by an ex-girlfriend. People were going insane about Kurt Busch and said that he also should never be allowed back in racing, yet once he was exonerated, we all welcomed him with open arms, and were okay with his waiver as well.

And that brings me to May 11, 2015. DeflateGate. People are going crazy about Tom Brady and the Patriots being fined and suspended for the situation, and most people were up in arms when Troy Vincent claimed that past infractions could have played a role in the size of the penalty.

But we’re okay when it comes to Kyle Busch. We’re totally okay with his past infractions, and his past history playing a role in whether or not he should be granted a waiver. I get it, he’s been a jerk at times. He’s been fresh to his fans, to media members, to people around him, but so have Tony Stewart and Kurt Busch, and probably you yourself too. No one is perfect.

Kyle Busch’s injury is an isolated situation, and now that Kyle Busch is back, and the fact that there’s no set number of races that NASCAR says you can miss in order to not be eligible for the Chase, proves that Kyle should be granted a waiver, and be eligible for it. If his name were Dale Earnhardt, Jr or Danica Patrick, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion.

If you’re still feeling weird about the whole thing after reading this article, then sit down and think for a while, and maybe you’ll realize that the thing you actually don’t like, is NASCAR’s flawed system that allows drivers to miss races and be eligible for the Championship. Like in the courts, NASCAR has set this as a precedent, and until they change the law and fix it, Kyle Busch and everyone who misses this amount of races should be granted a waiver, regardless of your name and your previous infractions.

The fact that there’s even a question in this disappoints me about fans, because it’s simply their hatred for Kyle Busch, and nothing else. I’ll argue that until I’m blue in the face. But I better watch out, if my blue face causes me to miss a race, my unpopular opinion would make fans irate and say I shouldn’t be granted a waiver… Yes, I agree, the system is a mess! 

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