NASCAR: Abuse findings sideline Busch
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida -- NASCAR has suspended Sprint Cup Series driver Kurt Busch indefinitely after the release of a supplemental disposition by the Family Court of the State of Delaware delineating the reasons for the court's decision, announc...
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida - NASCAR has suspended Sprint Cup Series driver Kurt Busch indefinitely after the release of a supplemental disposition by the Family Court of the State of Delaware delineating the reasons for the court’s decision, announced Monday, to grant an order of protection to Busch’s former girlfriend, Patricia Driscoll.
Busch, the driver of the No. 41 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet, was found to be in violation of the following sections in the NASCAR rule book:
Section 12.1.a: Actions detrimental to stock car racing;
Section 12.8: Behavioral penalty.
“Given the serious nature of the findings and conclusions made by the Commissioner of the Family Court of the State of Delaware, NASCAR has indefinitely suspended driver Kurt Busch, effective immediately,” the sanctioning body said in a statement released Friday evening. “He will not be allowed to race nor participate in any NASCAR activities until further notice.
“Kurt Busch and his Stewart-Haas Racing team are fully aware of our position and why this decision was made. We will continue to respect the process and timetable of the authorities involved.”
The findings of the court stem from an incident that allegedly occurred Sept. 26, 2014, in Busch’s motor home at Dover International Speedway. The family court commissioner concluded that the preponderance of evidence indicated Busch had committed an act of domestic violence.
Busch had earned the 24th starting spot for Sunday’s Daytona 500. Stewart-Haas Racing released a statement indicating the organization is finalizing plans for Sunday’s race.
“We understand NASCAR’s position regarding Kurt Busch and accept their decision,” the statement said. “We are in the midst of finalizing our plans for the Daytona 500 and we will announce those details as soon as we’re ready.”
Chevrolet subsequently released a statement indicating the manufacturer is severing ties with the driver.
“Chevrolet has suspended its relationship with Kurt Busch indefinitely,” Chevrolet vice president of motorsports and performance vehicles Jim Campbell said in a statement. “We will continue to monitor the events surrounding Mr. Busch and are prepared to take additional action if necessary.”
NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer Steve O’Donnell affirmed the sanctioning body’s zero-tolerance policy for acts of domestic violence.
“NASCAR has made it very clear to our entire membership and the broader industry that any actions of abuse will not be tolerated in the industry,” O’Donnell said. “I want to make it clear that any inference that there is a culture or tolerance for this type of behavior is patently false.”
O’Donnell said Busch has the right to appeal NASCAR’s decision and if he requests it, NASCAR would grant him an expedited appeal.
Rusty Hardin, Busch’s attorney, indicated that the driver will appeal NASCAR’s suspension immediately.