Roush: Busch Should Honour Deal

Roush Racing team boss Jack Roush has said reigning Nextel Cup Champion Kurt Busch should honour his contract with the team

Roush: Busch Should Honour Deal

Last week, Busch surprised the pitlane by saying he will join Penske Racing when his contract with Roush Racing expired at the end of 2007, but he asked his team to release him a year early, so he could join Penske at the start of next season.

Roush himself has been involved in a similar custody battle with Chip Ganassi Racing's Jamie McMurray. Roush has signed McMurray for the end of 2007, when his current contract expires, but the team confirmed last weekend that the former rookie of the year will not be released from his contract early and would lead the team's four-car Nextel Cup squad next season.

"I very much want Jamie to stay with his sponsors and stay with Chip and do what he's obliged to do based on his commitment," Roush told Speed Channel. "Other things being equal, I expect Kurt to do the same thing. Unlike Jamie, Jamie told Chip he would do whatever he wanted, and truth of fact, Kurt has asked me for a release from next year. So it is different.

"My emotions carry me one way, saying I'd be happy for him to go if he doesn't want to be here. But my emotions carry me the other way, saying that he's a Championship-level driver. He's done a great with that."job with us. We've got an investment in him as he does in us, and I'd like to have one more year.

Roush said he was surprised by Busch's request last week and had no idea that his driver was negotiating with another team behind the scenes.

"It was probably one of the best kept negotiating secrets that's been around the garage area," Roush added. "Specifically, Kurt Busch asked for a meeting with me and said initially that he was not going to negotiate with me for 2007 and then went on and said he'd like to be released for 2006. He didn't tell me where he was going. I assumed he was going to continue to drive somebody's car, but he didn't say what his plan was."

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Series NASCAR
Author Tim Redmayne
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