With two races left to go during the 2011 Sprint Cup Season M&M has dropped its sponsorship of NASCAR driver Kyle Busch.
M&M pulled their sponsorship of the No. 18 car for races at Phoenix and Homestead-Miami after Busch’s actions at last Friday’s Truck Series race in Texas put him in hot water. Replacing the M&M logo for the last two races will be Interstate Batteries.
Speaking about the situation Debra A. Sandler, chief consumer officer, Mars Chocolate North America told Yahoo Sports:
“Kyle’s recent actions are unacceptable and do not reflect the values of Mars … While we do not condone Kyle’s recent actions, we do believe that he has shown remorse and has expressed a desire to change. We believe our decision will have a positive impact on Kyle and will help him return next season ready to win.”
While the sponsorship pull isn’t the best news Busch could receive it’s better than the other possible outcome, Joe Gibbs Racing had contacted Aric Almirola as a possible replacement for Busch during the final two Sprint Cup races of the 2011 season.
M&M isn’t pulling out completely, releasing the following statement on Thursday:
“The car will not run with the M&M’s paint scheme until 2012, at which time Kyle Busch will be the driver with the expectation that no future incident take place.”
In responding to the company’s statement team owner Joe Gibbs said:
“We strongly support Mars’ decision … This gives us all time to work together to foster a positive change where Kyle can continue racing in a way we can all be proud of.”
NASCAR this week forced Kyle Busch to pay a $50,000 fine after he purposefully wrecked Ron Hornaday’s truck in last weeks race.
Gibbs and Busch will speak to members of the media on Friday morning at the Phoenix International Raceway.