WATCH: Clint Bowyer Wins at Richmond as Kyle Busch Spins Dale Earnhardt Jr

Published 09/10/2021, 2:05 PM EDT
LONG POND, PA – JULY 31: Clint Bowyer, driver of the #15 Maxwell House Toyota, gets in his car in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway on July 31, 2015 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images)


Back when he was racing, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was regarded as one of the most popular drivers in NASCAR. So when Kyle Busch spun him out during the 2008 Cup Series race at Richmond, Busch became public enemy no. 1. At the time, the duo was fighting for the race lead with Earnhardt Jr. in front.

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Busch tried to lunge a few times, but Dale Jr fended him off. Finally, the #18 driver managed to stick his nose alongside the #88 car, but Dale Jr inched ahead. Then it happened. Kyle Busch tried one last lunge, but only succeeded in spinning Dale Earnhardt Jr. The good news was that Dale Jr was okay, but the bad news was that he clattered the wall and dropped down the order.

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While all that was going on, Kyle Busch just became Clint Bowyer’s new best friend. This is because he sneaked past the incident and inherited the lead. The 42-year-old took his only race win that year, which also happened to be his 2nd career win out of 10.

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Where did Clint Bowyer, Kyle Busch, and Dale Earnhardt Jr finish?

The incident occurred on lap 398, and none of the fans appreciated Busch’s stunt. In fact, the Joe Gibbs Racing driver was not on the receiving end of a wave of boos from the crowd. Most of it was because of Dale Jr’s relationship with the late great Dale Earnhardt Sr. Additionally, many felt that Busch intentionally caused the accident, though Earnhardt later insisted otherwise.

LONG POND, PA – JUNE 05: Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M’s Pretzel Toyota, sits in his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Gillette Fusion ProGlide 500 at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

In the end, Clint Bowyer stormed to victory, with Kyle Busch in 2nd place. Meanwhile, poor old Dale Earnhardt Jr could only muster 15th place. Although Bowyer managed to fend off Busch and Mark Martin, it rubbed people the wrong way that Kyle Busch benefitted from the incident. From that point onwards, Busch was quite hated in the NASCAR community.

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DIVE DEEPER

Kyle Busch Fined Big Bucks After Darlington Race

10 days ago

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Dhruv George

11983 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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