Two-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Busch was eliminated from the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs following an engine failure at Bristol Motor Speedway and he put the onus on Toyota for the failure.
The engine failure at Bristol was the second one in the playoffs for Busch. He also had an engine failure at Darlington, the first race in the Playoffs, where he eventually finished 30th.
At Bristol, Busch finished 34th just ahead of Ty Gibbs and Martin Truex Jr., who were eliminated due to steering issues.
Busch spoke to the media after his early exit at Bristol saying, “Absolutely devastated. Just unfortunate circumstances obviously. Another engine failure this week. Obviously, we’re already in a hole, but puts us in a deeper one.”
“I can’t stress it enough just how much I feel for my guys and the ones that are out there pouring their souls into this effort and this opportunity for us to go race for championships. It’s not fair to them. Hate it for those guys, and Rowdy Nation, and M&Ms, and Interstate Batteries. We all want better. We all should have better and it’s just not coming to us right now,” he added.
When asked if there was any warning and about the other Toyotas having issues, Busch answered, “There was no warning. And I think some of the other issues are power steering related, mine was catastrophic.”
He was then asked about the possibility of it being mandated parts from NASCAR given Kevin Harvick’s recent comments after he was forced into a DNF following a car fire at Darlington.
“No, that’s completely different than our situation,” Busch replied. “They’re talking about the steering rack and steering parts and pieces that you’re mandated by NASCAR to run. Our issue is a Toyota issue.”
Tyler Reddick, Austin Dillon, and Kevin Harvick were also eliminated from the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs following Bristol.
The playoff field now stands at 12 cars with Chase Elliott back on top of the points. He’s got a 15 point lead on second place Joey Logano going into the AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. Elliot has a total of 3040 points.
The other 10 playoff contenders include Ross Chastain, Kyle Larson, William Byron, Denny Hamlin, Christopher Bell, Ryan Blaney, Chase Briscoe, Alex Bowman, Daniel Suárez, and Austin Cindric. Chastain and Cindric who stand in third and 12th respectively are only separated by 14 points. Chastain currently has 3020 while Cindric has 3006.
Chris Buescher took home the victory at Bristol. He was the third non-playoff contender to win in the first stage of the playoffs. Bubba Wallace took home the checkered flag at Kansas while Erik Jones celebrated the victory at Darlington.
This second round of the playoffs includes Texas, Talladega, and the Roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
What do you make of Busch’s comments? Who do you have advancing into the next round? Who is your pick to win the championship?