Kurt Busch Officially Retires From NASCAR Following Concussion Last Season

Kurt Busch NASCAR
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The end of an era.

According to ESPN, Kurt Busch is officially retiring from NASCAR at the age of 45, after suffering from a serious concussion that sidelined him last season.

It all went down Saturday at Daytona International Speedway, as the famed driver fought back tears while standing on the same stage where he won the Daytona 500 back in 2017.

He said:

“My body is just having a battle with Father Time.”

He added that he has been dealing with arthritis, along with the effects of the rear-impact collision that kept him off the track last year.

However, Busch appears to be content with his decision, saying:

“I’m very happy, I’m complacent. There’s nothing I look back on and regret about having this opportunity at the top level of NASCAR.”

Kurt’s younger brother Kyle, along with NASCAR executives Jim France, Ben Kennedy, Steve O’Donnell, Mike Helton, and a ton of Toyota brass and 23XI Racing drivers including Bubba Wallace and Tyler Reddick attended the announcement.

He continued:

“It’s time for a new journey, and I’m excited to get started.”

The concussion that initially sidelined Busch went down during a qualifying crash at Pocono last summer, after slamming into a wall backward. The front end of his Toyota slammed at a G-force that raised questions and concerns about the safety of the Next Gen cars.

NASCAR spent a lot of the offseason working on the safety of the cars, after rear-impact collisions caused a number of concussions and scares in 2022. Alex Bowman missed five races with a concussion, and a number of others expressed their concerns for their health after similar wrecks.

Busch noted that his condition has taken a lot of time, but has continued to improve. He also noted that he plans to get back on the track at some point, but has no timetable for his return.

He added:

“It’s not as bad as it was last summer and last fall.”

Busch wracked up 34 wins on 776 starts throughout his 23 year career. During his time off, he was a consultant for 23XI Racing and Toyota.

He also counseled Travis Pastrana at last year’s Daytona 500, and has tried to be there for those in the garage who need some advice.

Busch concluded:

“Racing at NASCAR’s highest level requires every bit of focus, heart, stamina and determination.

And I know right now I can’t give what’s required to compete at that level week in and week out.”

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock