Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Kyle Busch: On The Spot At The Speedway
It was a bit funny to pass along the information about Kyle Busch's Tuesday speeding ticket. It was a pretty simple story. A guy out with his wife in a loaner sports car punches it on a rural road and gets caught. Well, at least that was my opinion.
News organizations across the country and around the world thought otherwise. For them, this was a nice little news nugget that could be used to spice up a newscast filled with hurricanes, high gas prices and the local crime scene.
What was the strangest place that you saw, heard or read about "the ticket" this week? It seems the list is endless. Talk about going viral.
Wednesday night on SPEED's RaceHub, Steve Byrnes and Jeff Hammond were talking about one more hurdle that Busch must clear as he tries to clean-up this speeding mess.
"I know he said the right things," remarked Hammond. "But when you use this poor of a judgement out there on the street a lot of people are going to come after you. He is going to have to deal with it first and foremost when he gets to the track on Thursday. It's going to stick with him all weekend long."
What Hammond was pointing out is that Busch had it easy so far this week. In response to the ticket, he issued a well-crafted press release that covered all the bases and was dutifully read on the NASCAR TV shows and posted on the websites. He admitted his error and even thanked the local police department for their service.
Thursday, Busch will have the challenge of navigating the Charlotte Motor Speedway as the track opens for the weekend. The on-track activity will be the easy part. It's the garage, pit road and the media center that will be the challenge. The night actually ends with Sprint Cup Series qualifying live on SPEED.
It should be interesting to see how the SPEED reporters on the various practice and news shows handle this story on the air Thursday. Firmly in step with NASCAR, SPEED has been guilty time and time again of sweeping anything under the rug that NASCAR defines as dirt.
Before the RaceHub show came along, SPEED's TV journalism credibility rested with Dave Despain for one hour on Sunday nights. Now guys like Byrnes, Hammond and Elliott Sadler get put in the position of dealing with touchy subjects on a regular basis as part of the new series.
Mrs. Busch has made herself into a high-profile driver's wife with her social media skills and her relentless promotion of everything involving her new family unit. From bikini pictures on the hood of Kyle's Corvette to a TV series about their wedding, she is a person you either love for her passion or hate for her exploitation.
Thursday will also bring an opportunity for her to step-up and reinforce her husband's apology. Keep an eye on how SPEED treats her or if instead she keeps a low profile and waves-off the interview opportunities.
Finally, the current mainstream NASCAR press corps is a colorful lot. A diverse group of old-school newspaper folks is mixed with new media bloggers, well-known radio personalities and some TV reporters who work the news beat full-time.
Throughout the weekend, there is a ton of media content created and moved along to NASCAR fans. Online, radio and TV media members are all seeking to craft their own media messages about the activity while keeping a close eye on each other at the same time.
There is absolutely no doubt that Busch will hear questions from the print/online reporters that he has not heard all week so far. The answers are not going to be crafted by professional public relations professionals, but must come from the driver at the track in among his peers.
As we watch, listen and read about the Thursday activity from the speedway, keep this topic in mind and see how often it appears and what becomes of the story as the day progresses. Sometimes, things change before our eyes in the media world.
This post will host your comments about the Thursday coverage on SPEED from CMS and also about the Busch incident. To add your opinion, just click on the comments button below. This is a family-friendly website, please keep that in mind when posting. Thank you for taking the time to stop by The Daly Planet.