Matt Kenseth shows off his comedic skills in Talladega press conference

Appearing at a comedy club near you — Matt Kenseth.

Matt Kenseth shows off his comedic skills in Talladega press conference
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota

If this racing thing doesn’t work out, the 2003 NASCAR Cup champion could always find a job in stand up. 

For 15-minutes straight, Kenseth reeled off one zinger after the next on topics related to Talladega, the title and what the future holds for the 45-year-old racer. 

On productive talks regarding next year? 

“Had some real productive talks with Katie (wife),” Kenseth said. “We're going to run another day. Had a real, long productive talk together. That was enjoyable. It's true, we did. Talked about it a lot.”

On possibly making his final start at Talladega this weekend?

“I think except for the very first time you come here, every time you come here you think it possibly could be your last race here,” he said. “I don't really feel any different today than any other time except for the first time I came here.”

On whether points (stage) racing will elevate the level of aggression at Talladega?

“Just think there will be more cars in the crash,” Kenseth said.

And on what might make him happy in 2018?

“You know, I was thinking about maybe driving a school bus,” Kenseth said. “I thought it would be fun. I drive the kids to school every morning. I enjoy that. I thought it would be fun to drive them home, too.” 

When asked if driving a school bus would pay the bills, Kenseth replied, “I think I'll be okay. We'll eat either way.”

But seriously folks, with the limited market for drivers at the Cup level, what would Kenseth be willing to drive? He couldn’t help asking, “Is that a job offer?” 

Kenseth then added, “The school bus thing is appealing.” But finally, he admitted, “No, I don't know. I mean, I said a few weeks ago I wasn't going to talk about next year anymore, as long as we're alive in the Playoffs, which we're certainly not one of the favorites right now, we haven't done the things we wanted to do, but we're certainly still alive. 

“Anything can happen this weekend. Kansas is a great track for us. I'm honestly just focused on the next six weeks or whatever it is at the moment.”

Getting back to Victory Lane

Kenseth has won at five of the remaining six races in the playoffs. He currently sits ninth in the Cup standings with two races remaining in the Round of 12. Since joining Joe Gibbs Racing in 2013 — when he scored a career-high seven races in one season — Kenseth has earned 14 of his 38-career wins, and 12 of 20-career poles. Although it’s been 47 races since his last win, he’d still like to end his time behind the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota on a high note. 

“Certainly it's been a long time, way too long, since we've won a race, especially considering the equipment we're in and all that,” Kenseth said. “It sure would be a boost to everybody's confidence if you could get that win, get everything to go right, execute and finish it off, get to Victory Lane.”

Kenseth isn’t really surprised he’s been priced out of the market. The current economic model of NASCAR favors drivers that can either bring sponsorship to the table or will work for well below what Kenseth and other fellow champions have commanded for compensation in the past.

“On a big scheme of things, I feel like things have happened quickly, but yet, on the other hand, it kind of does surprise me how, you know, the reset, if you want to call it that, hasn't been totally linear,” Kenseth said. “Some people have been able to make it work, some people haven't. 

“Certainly right now is a very interesting time. I think it's a very tough time for car owners to find the money that they need to field competitive racecars with competitive personnel. I think it's probably harder than at least it's been since I've been around. And the cost is higher than when I started, as well. Certainly a challenging environment. I think there's a lot of positives. Hopefully, it will start to turn back the other direction.”

Watch a little of the press conference here:

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