Gotcha! Tony Stewart defends Kurt Busch’s comments

Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevrolet, stands on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks at Dover International Speedway on June 2, 2012 in Dover, Delaware. (June 1, 2012 - Source: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images North America)

Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevrolet, stands on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks at Dover International Speedway on June 2, 2012 in Dover, Delaware. (June 1, 2012 - Source: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images North America)

Like him or not Tony Stewart is a three time NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion and is one of the most popular drivers in the sport. He is also a supporter of Kurt Busch’s recent comments directed to Bob Pockrass.

Pockrass asked Busch about racing Justin Allgaier for position and what probation refrained him from doing. Busch responded “It refrains me from not the (expletive) out of you right now because you ask me stupid questions. But since I’m on probation, I suppose that’s improper to say as well. If you could talk about racing things, we could talk about racing things, Bob.”

After Pockrass responded, “This is racing,” Busch replied, “It’s not racing. You’re in this just to start stuff. That’s all you’re out here for.”

NASCAR acted quickly and suspended Busch for the Pocono race weekend. He’s set to meet with Phoenix Racing owner James Finch on Tuesday so the two can talk about his future status with the team.

Never one to shy away from controversy Stewart spoke on Sirius Radio last night that he liked the answer from Kurt Busch.

“I kind of thought it was good when it pertains to Bob Pockrass. Bob’s a decent guy. But there’s just so many good things to write about in our sport. There’s a couple of reporters that strictly want to be tabloid journalists. Unfortunately, he’s one of them.”

Stewart hosts the Prelude to the Dream on Wednesday night at Eldora Speedway, a track he owns. The event is a dirt race which features stars from across motorsports. One of the drivers scheduled to be at the event is Kurt Busch.

“Sad but true: Kurt is right,” Stewart said. “Bob Pockrass is probably the biggest mixer in the whole media center. Every time he interviews somebody, it is strictly about something controversial.”

Stewart is also known for his tepid media relations. Stewart’s weekly interviews are often short and to the point with a bit of sarcasm mixed in. He’s also been fined in the past for striking a camera man.

Make no mistake about it. Stewart is no fan of the what he calls gotcha journalism which he says is what Pockrass spends his time doing every week.

“The problem is he’s also the first one that anytime anything controversial comes up, he’s the first one to ask a question. People cringe when he comes up. You know it’s about whatever the controversial topic of the week is. It’s gotcha journalism.”

Busch signed a one year deal to drive for Phoenix Racing this year. He is widely considered the biggest free agent on the market for 2013 if he can learn to control his temper.

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