NASCAR: Kurt Busch returns to court, again denies ex-girlfriend’s claims of assault

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Former NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Kurt Busch has again denied his ex-girlfriend’s allegations that he physically assaulted her inside his motorhome last September at Dover International Speedway.

Busch took the stand today in Kent County (Del.) Family Court during the third day of a hearing in which Patricia Driscoll seeks to gain a protection order against the Stewart-Haas Racing driver.

As part of his testimony this afternoon, Busch and his attorney, Rusty Hardin, went through a re-enactment of the alleged incident.

Jon Offredo of the Wilmington (Del.) News Journal reports that Hardin asked Busch if he “pushed her head against the wall,” “[slammed] her head against the wall,” and “[slammed] her head against the wall three times” – the latter query referencing a specific claim of Driscoll’s. Busch replied no to all of them.

Last month, on the second day of the hearing, Busch had asserted that all he did in their encounter was cup his hands around Driscoll’s face and ask her to leave.

Offredo’s report also notes that in today’s testimony, Busch and several others that testified said that Driscoll claimed she was a “trained assassin” who has killed drug lords.

Busch also said Driscoll claimed that actress Jessica Chastain’s character in the movie Zero Dark Thirty was based partly on her and other females that work in the defense industry; along with serving as president of the non-profit Armed Forces Foundation, Driscoll is also the CEO of a company called Frontline Defense Systems.

Hardin asked Busch how he would fare in a actual physical altercation with Driscoll, to which Busch replied that Driscoll could easily subdue him because “she is a badass.”

NASCAR chaplain Nick Terry and Busch’s assistant, Kristy Cloutier, also testified today as well.

The Associated Press reports that Terry said Driscoll showed up at his motor home the night of the alleged assault claiming that Busch had grabbed her and pushed her against the wall – but that she never told him that her head had been slammed against the wall three times as she has claimed.

Terry also said that neither he or his wife noticed any marks on Driscoll.

As for Cloutier, she described the former relationship between Busch and Driscoll as one akin to that of a puppet and a puppeteer, with Driscoll being the latter.

The same AP report adds that Cloutier said Driscoll once attempted to get her name put on a sales contract for Busch’s North Carolina home, which Busch had wanted only in his name.

”I don’t believe anything Patricia says,” said Cloutier per the AP. “It seems that every time she says something, it’s a lie.”

Cloutier acknowledged that Busch had a temper, but she believes he isn’t capable of assault: ”That’s not the person he is,” she said.

The Dover (Del.) Police Department announced last week that it had completed its investigation into the matter and had handed it over to the Kent County (Del.) Attorney General’s office.

The hearing will extend into a fourth day tomorrow.

Donny Schatz edges Kyle Larson for Outlaws victory at Lake Ozark

Trent Gower/World of Outlaws
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Donny Schatz made a last-lap pass on Kyle Larson, snatching a World of Outlaws victory Saturday night at Lake Ozark Speedway.

Larson started on the pole, led 30 of 35 laps and was in control until a caution set up a two-lap shootout to the finish before a limited crowd in Eldon, Missouri.

Schatz and Larson traded the lead twice over the final two laps, but the 10-time champion emerged with his first victory since the NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series returned in mid-May from a two-month layoff because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

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“Man, I don’t know what to say, but Kyle’s a damn good racer,” Schatz, who led five laps, told DirtVision after his 296th Outlaws win. “I kind of had to go where he didn’t. We got that green-white-checkered, and I decided I was going to send it. He decided the same thing.

Donny Schatz celebrates at Lake Ozark Speedway after his second Outlaws Sprint Car victory of the season (Trent Gower).

“I’m glad to get the win. It feels like it’s been forever. I’ve been out here 24 years, and every night is a learning experience still.”

Larson finished second in his fifth start since he began racing with the Outlaws after being suspended from NASCAR.

“Obviously, it would have been nice to get the win,” Larson said on DirtVision. “I figured Donny would rip the middle. The restarts before, he’d almost clear me in (turns) 3 and 4. I should have known to protect and block his momentum. I felt I exited 2 OK. We don’t have spotters or rearview mirrors so you can’t see how close he is or really hear it when the pace is so slow.

“I just didn’t do a good enough job to run a smarter final couple of laps.”

Brad Sweet, Larson’s brother in law, finished third, with Shane Stewart and David Gravel rounding out the top five.

Larson rebounded from a 10th in Friday’s feature at Lake Ozark Speedway, continuing his streak of top-10 finishes in all five of his starts since the Outlaws’ return.

“We got our car a lot better from last night, so that was a plus,” said Larson, who finished second and first in back-to-back nights last week at Federated Auto Parts Raceway at Pevely, Missouri. “These guys are really tough. To be on the podium with Donny and Brad, they’ve won lots of big races and championships, it’s nice. I just didn’t do what I needed to do that last restart.”

Larson nearly had a flawless night Saturday, turning a 11.426-second lap to capture his second pole position this season and won the pole dash to start first in the feature.

Larson, who was fired by Chip Ganassi Racing from his NASCAR Cup Series ride last month for using a racial slur in an iRacing event, said last week that he plans to run several more NOS Energy Sprint Car Series races this year.

Larson remains indefinitely suspended by NASCAR but was approved to race by the Outlaws after completing sensitivity training.