Kyle Busch reached out to Alex Bowman regarding his comments toward Bowman’s Las Vegas Motor Speedway victory after the checkered flag dropped last Sunday.
Busch’s post-race frustration boiled over onto team radio communications. Said Busch: “Same (expletive) guy who backs into every (expletive) win that he ever (expletive) gets, backs into another (expletive) win.”
But following the Monday night chat with Busch, Bowman felt it was nothing personal and had everything to do with Busch’s tight grasp on victory being ripped away following a late-race caution.
“Everything’s good, everything’s fine,” Bowman told NASCAR.com “He was just mad to lose the race. I totally understand that. I didn’t do anything to him besides take the race away. I don’t think there’s an issue between him and I.”
Both drivers were able to turn the heat-of-the-moment reaction into light-hearted fun on social media. Bowman’s group designed a T-shirt to raise proceeds — 18% for local animal shelters, which is Busch’s car number. On the flip side, Busch offered a small selection of his merchandise for 48% off, an ode to Bowman’s car number.
Bowman produced another T-shirt after he was called a “hack” by Joe Gibbs Racing driver Denny Hamlin after his victory last fall at Martinsville Speedway. The revenue from those shirts allowed Bowman to purchase Martinsville grandfather clocks for his entire team, with the rest of the proceeds benefitting Best Friends Animal Society.
“The T-shirt thing has been really funny,” Bowman said. “We’re selling a lot of them, which is really cool to see all the fan support on that and then to be able to give back to a good cause by doing that is also really cool. … I never thought we would sell thousands and thousands of T-shirts that say dumb stuff on it, but it’s been pretty fun.”
While the comments toward his racing ability are unwarranted, Bowman uses it as fuel to achieve his first NASCAR Cup Series championship, a feat that certainly cannot be backed into.
“There’s just kind of a common thread that I’m not going to get credit for anything, ever,” Bowman said. “It is what it is. We’ve won five Cup races in the last calendar year, so I’m not really too worried about it. It’s frustrating at times.
“That’s just kind of the way things have been no matter what the situation is. Just gives me a lot of motivation to try to go chase a championship this year and then let everybody try to figure out how they’re going to take credit away from that, too.”
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