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Kurt Busch, Profanity Remain Hot Topics In Texas

| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Thursday, June 7 2012

Ron Hornaday Jr. talked about Kurt Busch at Texas Motor Speedway on Thursday. (File photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

By Jeff Hood | Senior Writer

FORT WORTH, Texas – The last time Ron Hornaday Jr. visited Texas Motor Speedway the veteran driver was thrust into the national spotlight after he was intentionally wrecked by Kyle Busch under caution during a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event.

Busch was subsequently parked by NASCAR for the remainder of that November weekend in Texas for his actions.

Nearly seven months later, Hornaday returned to the facility billed as The Great American Speedway on Thursday and was asked for his thoughts on the one-race suspension levied against Kurt Busch, Kyle’s older brother, following his verbal assault on Saturday against Bob Pockrass, a reporter for the Sporting News.

“I got fined $10,000 for saying the “s” word about (Greg) Biffle one time,” Hornaday said. “So I’m just repeating what he said.

“Bob asks some stupid questions sometimes. But it’s Bob Pockrass and you’ve got to take it for granted. He’s still snapping.

“You’re always going to have them issues. (Kurt) is just going to have to learn how to control himself.”

David Starr, who will start 17th in Friday night’s WinStar World Casino 400 truck race, hinted that Kurt Busch could face more severe ramifications if he continues to display his temper in public.

“There are some reporters out there that ask some off the wall questions,” Starr said. “I understand that. But they are just here to give the public a story.

“Some of the stuff the Busch brothers do, where I’m from we kind of self-police that. I think Jimmy Spencer (in 2003) taught (Kurt) a lesson and nobody has since. It’s a shame that it needs to come to that.

“What a great competitor and a good friend of mine, but it’s a shame that he doesn’t know how to keep his mouth shut. And the problem is he’s going to run his mouth to the wrong person and the consequence is going to a lot worse than him just missing one race.”

The drivers participating in Saturday night’s IZOD IndyCar race at Texas Motor Speedway won’t be the only ones holding the throttle wide open this weekend.

The competitors in Friday night’s truck race will get a glimpse of how it feels to race flat-footed around the high-banked 1.5-mile oval.

“You can definitely hold it wide open here for at least eight laps on fresh tires, especially at night when it’s cooler because the track has a lot of grip,” said rookie driver Ty Dillon, who will start third in the 167 lap race. “This is the first place I had come to in a 1.5-mile in the truck that I put into my mind that I’ll have to hold it wide open.

“My brother (Austin Dillon) told me last year when I first came here ‘from the beginning of practice as soon as you pull out of the garage you have it to the floor until you decide to come in.’ And that’s pretty much what I did. And I actually felt more comfortable holding it wide open.”

NASCAR pioneer Cotton Owens died early Thursday. The 88-year-old, who made his mark as a driver and owner in the sport, was voted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame last month.

Owens is scheduled to be inducted into the Hall in February.

“Time marches on and the one thing that I try to embrace about our sport is our history and our past and the pioneers like Cotton that brought us to the forefront and made NASCAR what it is,” said two-time truck series champion Todd Bodine.

“This is hard for everybody because we understand what he did for our sport. He was a great man for our sport and will be sorely missed.”

– Jeff Hood can be reached at jhood@racintoday.com

| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Thursday, June 7 2012
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