Kyle Busch on his future: "There's a big change coming"

Regardless of how Kyle Busch’s contract situation resolves itself, the two-time NASCAR Cup Series champion said his future will take a different look.

Busch, 37, is in the final year of his current contract with Joe Gibbs Racing and has yet to sign an extension with the Toyota organization.

On Saturday, Busch said he has not been told that returning to JGR is no longer an option, but he has been listening to offers from other teams.

It’s not the situation Busch envisioned himself in when the 2022 season started.

The current process was started when Mars Inc. – the longtime sponsor of Busch’s No. 18 – announced it would be ending its NASCAR sponsorship after this season.

“I’m a racer and only ever known how to race, nothing else, trying to do other business projects and things like that, but none of them have really blown up and taken off,” Busch said. “So, it has been hard and figuring out all of that is certainly tough.

“And the first time I went through this was 15 years ago and it was a learning experience. It was hard then too, but it was nothing like now. Then it was just me, myself and I. I didn’t have (wife) Samantha, I didn’t have a son. I didn’t have a daughter. All I had was an agent that was helping me.

“It’s way, way harder because now you have Kyle Busch Motorsports that you’ve got to think about, you’ve got a building that you’ve got to pay on, you know, you’ve got a building note and all that sort of stuff. So, there’s a lot of pieces and that’s why it’s not so simple.”

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Where would he go if not JGR?

One possible avenue for Busch appeared to close this week as two potential rides at Stewart-Haas Racing now seem filled.

SHR’s chief competition director, Greg Zipadelli, said the current plan was to have Custer return to the No. 41. Also, reported on Friday that Aric Almirola would forestall retirement for another year and return to the No. 10 Ford.

Busch said if he were to leave JGR, it was important to join an organization where he felt he had a chance to win races.

“I don't feel like it’s fair to me or my family or anything else if we’re going to have to spend less time together moving forward because we are going to have to change our lifestyle, no questions,” he said. “There's a big change coming.

“And so, is it worth it to go run around and not have an opportunity to win right away versus building something versus jumping in something that can win? All those questions are certainly being weighed out.

“Again, that’s also why it’s not so simple and so easy. So, thankfully there are opportunities out there. There are Cup jobs available. But again, it will not look the same as what it has for the last 15 years.”

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