Kyle Busch, the driver of the #8 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 fielded by Richard Childress Racing, has not always been celebrated in the sport the way he is now. The Las Vegas native's switch from the Toyota camp in the NASCAR Cup Series to the bowtie has seen a monumental change in the fans' attitude towards him.
Ever since the 38-year-old switched to RCR at the beginning of this year, fans have seemingly grown fond of the driver. Boos from the crowd have turned into cheers and applause for Busch during driver introductions and other notable moments on the track.
"It's funny because Brexton (Busch, Kyle's son) and I will still be at the car and there will be boos and so we'll automatically look at the screen thinking it's dad and then we're like, oh, it's Denny (Hamlin) or Bubba (Wallace). We're like 'It's not us!' so it's exciting to see"
One of the most polarizing figures in the sport, Kyle Busch has been the subject of many boos from the audience over the years. The former #18 M&M's Toyota Camry TRD driver also liked to play to the crowd's apparent dislike for him at the track.
But with the backing of one of the fastest teams in the sport, Busch has seemingly managed to turn the fans' boos around.
Kyle Busch was critical of his performance after a crash at Texas Motor Speedway last weekend
After starting the year with great momentum and a few trips to victory lane, Kyle Busch and the #8 crew at RCR seem to have slowed down at the wrong time. While near-perfect performances are expected from the driver as well as the team during the crucial postseason playoffs, Busch has failed to extract speed from his Chevy in recent races.
The 38-year-old elaborated on that after a crash last weekend, during the AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 400. He told Bob Pockrass:
"This is the time of the year to perform and put up results, and I'm a complete letdown to my team right now not being able to get the results that we need, every time I try, I crash. It's like the less I try, the more I ride around, the better day we have."
Watch Kyle Busch try his luck at Talladega Superspeedway the coming weekend.