A collection of world-class X Games stars and premier motorsports and action sports athletes welcomed Kyle and Kurt Busch to the Monster Energy team Thursday with the announcement of a multi-year agreement as primary sponsor of the team's No. 54 Monster Energy Camry in the NASCAR Nationwide Series for Kyle Busch Motorsports.
With multi-time X Games and Dew Tour Champion Jamie Bestwick serving as announcer, a freestyle moto-X demonstration kicked things off at the headquarters of team owner Kyle Busch's race shop in Mooresville, N.C.
"It's great to have the Busch brothers join Monster and be part of action sports culture -- they have the right attitude for Monster and they're proven winners," said Bestwick, who was joined in the announcement by a lineup including seven-time supercross champion Jeremy McGrath, multi-fold freestyle Motocross X Games medalists Jeremy "Twitch" Stenberg, three time X Games Gold Medalist Kyle Loza, multiple X Games medalist Adam Jones, off-road champion Johnny Greaves and BMX legend and rally car driver Dave Mirra who has more X Games medals than anyone in history, in making the announcement in front a slack-jawed platoon of NASCAR media members who very likely saw moto-X backflips live for the first time.
"Now that you've joined Monster you may have to try a backflip yourself," said Bestwick, adding, "all of us want to take some of your 650-horsepower cars here in the shop out for a 180 mile per hour spin, by the way. Keys, please."
"I'm thrilled to a be part of a team of athletes like this, but I'll pass on backflipping" said Kyle Busch, who will drive the season-opening race on the 2.5-mile, 31-degree high banks of Daytona International Speedway, and the subsequent four races before splitting the balance of the season with Kurt. Their goal: Securing the Nationwide Owner's Championship.
"Since debuting in NASCAR, Kyle Busch Motorsports has had the goal to add a championship-caliber Nationwide Series team to our organization. With today's announcement of Monster Energy as primary sponsor and my brother Kurt as the second driver, we've accomplished that goal," Kyle Busch said.
The Monster athletes on-hand had no problem bridging the gap between traditional motorsports and action sports culture. "We all share a desire to be the best, and do whatever it takes to win," said McGrath, now a race-winning off-road truck competitor.
"I wouldn't mind taking a turn in one of those cars," said Greaves, to which Kyle responded, "I've driven off-road trucks and who knows maybe I'll do it again -- I don't mind getting dirty."
"Monster Energy has always stood for competing and winning no matter what the sport," said Monster Energy Co. president Mark Hall. "To make this happen, we've always sought out the most determined, fearless and committed athletes for the Monster team. With the Busch brothers sharing the wheel of Kyle Busch Motorsports Energy Camry, we have reason to believe we have drivers capable of running up front every weekend."