Ever since longtime sponsor M&M's announced that they would leave NASCAR at the end of the 2022 season, the future of two-time Cup champion Kyle Busch has been uncertain. With no sponsor in place for 2023, Busch's continued role as the driver of Joe Gibbs Racing's No. 18 Toyota is not clear,only added to speculation about what might happen to one of NASCAR's biggest stars.
Speaking to Alex Andrejev of the Charlotte Observer, car owner Joe Gibbs expressed optimism that Busch's situation would be resolved.
"We're really confident that we're going to have that (No. 18) car squared away, sponsorship-wise, and we're trying to work on our deal right now with Kyle," Gibbs told the Observer. "So I think we feel good about it."
Based on what information is publicly available, Gibbs' confidence seems to be well-founded. According to a report by Adam Stern of Sports Business Journal, Joe Gibbs Racing is said to be in "advanced discussions with a major technology company" for a one-year deal to sponsor Busch in 2023, and the team has employed a marketing agency owned by fellow NASCAR car owner Tad Geschickter to aid in their efforts.
Busch first joined Joe Gibbs Racing in 2008, and he proceeded to become the flagship driver for both the team and automaker Toyota. Gibbs' comments followed remarks made by Toyota Racing Development president David Wilson, who emphasized how much the manufacturer wants to continue their long-term relationship with Busch.
"He can't wait for the day that his little boy, Brexton, races a Toyota Tundra out of the Kyle Busch Motorsports stable. He has that in his sights," Wilson said, per Matt Weaver of Racing America. "And that's not going to be for another 10-plus years, which means that we've got to make sure that we're still together long after Kyle's out of the driver's seat full time."
With his win at Bristol earlier this year, Kyle Busch is now just one of nine drivers in NASCAR history with 60 or more career wins, and he has tied Richard Petty's all-time record for the most consecutive seasons with at least one victory. Of Busch's 60 career wins, 56 have come while driving for Joe Gibbs Racing.