Drivers who could be out: No. 2 – Kyle Busch
Kyle Busch’s future with Joe Gibbs Racing continues to be up in the air, even several months after making the cryptic remarks he made at Talladega Speedway.
Busch stated that it could very well be “goodbye” from Joe Gibbs Racing, perhaps even the Cup Series as a whole, without significant sponsorship coming in to replace M&M’s.
M&M’s had announced before the season that the 2022 season would be their final season sponsoring the #18 Toyota. The impending loss of a longtime partner caught everybody at Joe Gibbs Racing and Toyota by surprise, and a contract extension that would ordinarily be nothing more than a formality is anything but.
Busch has said that, if sponsorship can’t be found, he would say that he lost his ride, as opposed to saying he has retired from Cup Series competition. While there have been a number of promising developments regarding potential sponsorship for the #18 Toyota since Busch made those cryptic remarks, that is still very much a possibility.
Could the sport’s highest paid driver ultimately need to take a pay cut to return for a 16th season behind the wheel of the #18 Toyota? That is probably more likely than him going elsewhere, given the fact that there are no other Toyota seats open.
A manufacturer switch would be far more complicated than it seems, considering the fact that his Kyle Busch Motorsports team is also aligned with Toyota.