Kyle Busch finds NASCAR future on shaky ground after M&M’s leaves


The president of M&M’s parent company Mars Wrigley, Anton Vincent, talked about the company evolving, becoming “consumer obsessed,” and the need to focus on “consumer interest and other passion points.”

“There’s a bit of a shift in our sports marketing strategy,” Vincent told Forbes.com earlier this year. “Our consumer base is very distributive.”

You follow? OK, then allow me to translate: Kyle Busch’s brilliant NASCAR career is in a holding pattern.

“You never anticipate being in this predicament,” Busch said in a Tuesday phone chat.

After 15 years as primary sponsor of Busch’s Cup Series cars, M&M’s is gone after this year. A relationship that long is highly uncommon in NASCAR, but eventual breakups happen.

There’s little doubt Kyle Busch will be in a quality car next year and beyond. But it might not be the familiar No. 18 Toyota owned by Joe Gibbs — Busch says he’d prefer to stay where he’s won two championships and truckloads of trophies, and Gibbs obviously wants to keep him.

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