Senior NASCAR Journalist Sheds Light on Speculative Theories Surrounding the Kyle Busch-M&M’s Announcement

Published 12/21/2021, 4:25 AM EST
INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – AUGUST 15: Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M’s Mix Toyota, waits on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on August 15, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)


One of the major reports recently has been the announcement of Mars and M&M no longer sponsoring Joe Gibbs Racing and Kyle Busch after 2022. This was one of those iconic sponsorships with which Busch was identified; one that led to his nickname, the ‘Candyman’.

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There were speculations about the reason for the brand pulling out of this sponsorship, the main one being the number placement rule being changed; the rule which dictates where the number will be on the car.

Until Gen 6, it was in a central position, but for Next Gen, it will move forward on a smaller quarter panel.

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But those speculations and theories about the sponsorship can go to bed now because reputed NASCAR journalist Bob Pockrass shed light on how this decision came into being.

He wrote, “Moving the number is designed to help sponsor value. There is no data yet on whether it will and this decision was made prior to the decision to move the number. Whether number is effective won’t be determined by M&M’s leaving but more by how many companies show interest.”

So that’s that with the speculations on the number placement theories. Mars decided to part ways with Busch and Joe Gibbs well before the new rule was announced or came into being.

Regardless of the reason, it doesn’t change the fact that this iconic partnership ending is indeed the end of an era.

Mars and Kyle Busch, an iconic partnership

In their association together that began in 2008, Busch and Mars reached new heights.

Not only was the deal worth $20 million annually, but together, the #18  holds the record for most races won by any driver-sponsor duo with 55 race wins. All Things Must Pass to pave way for new ones, and so did this association.

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According to Joe Gibbs Racing President, Dave Alpern, the reason is that Mars “wants to try some new things.” 

May 2, 2021; Kansas City, Kansas, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Kyle Busch (18) celebrates after winning the Buschy McBusch Race 400 at Kansas Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

So, after 2022, the fans and, in fact, everyone in NASCAR might have to get used to the new things about Kyle Busch and his cars.

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We’ve come to associate the brand and the driver so strongly that it will take a while to get used to the change.

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Shaharyar

484 articles

Shaharyar is a Formula 1 & NASCAR writer at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Journalism from Amity University, he has been a passionate follower of motorsports for better part of the decade. A Max Verstappen and Ferrari supporter, he dreams of a pairing of the two in future.

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