Jimmie Johnson wins the Sprint All-Star race.....again
posted by Mike Neff
Sunday May 19, 2013
Five-time is now four-time when it comes to the Sprint All-Star race. Coming into Saturday night’s race, Johnson was tied with Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt for most wins in the annual event with three wins. Johnson bided his time, restarted the last segment in the second spot, dueled Kasey Kahne for two laps to secure the lead and pulled away to a convincing win. Joey Logano started the last segment in the seventh position, took advantage of a slip up by Kyle Busch on the start of the final segment, and ultimately came home in the runner-up spot. Kyle Busch rebounded from his slip up to muscle his way back to third. Kahne started the final segment on the pole but couldn’t hold off Johnson on the first few laps of the restart and ended up fourth. Kurt Busch won two segments, was the first on pit road for the money pit stop, but finished the event in fifth place.
Jimmie Johnson summed up his results in two words, “we’re lucky”. It was tongue in cheek but Johnson was poking fun at the people who continue to accuse the No. 48 of preferential treatment, fixed races, and a blind eye to cheating. Johnson has one of the highest winning percentages in NASCAR history and it comes from natural talent and chemistry with his crew. This race also now ties Johnson with Davey Allison as the only two drivers to win the race in back-to-back years.
Logano and Busch visited with the media after the race to speak about their runs. Logano was understandably upbeat about his second while Busch was quite dejected, having another All-Star race slip out of his grasp. Kahne spoke about the elephant in the room that is the length of the segments in the race during his post race availability on pit road. He noted that the inherent problem with the format is that the car is designed with downforce, on a track that is cool and has a bunch of grip. The only way to make the races exciting after the first couple of laps of racing would be to extend the segments to the
The first 20 lap segment was won by Kurt Busch. Segment two went to his brother Kyle. That segment win allowed Bruton Smith to breathe more easily since he put up a $1,000,000 bonus to anyone who won all four of the segments. Segment three also went to the younger Busch, while the fourth segment win was tallied in brother Kurt’ s account.
Kyle Busch wins the North Carolina Education Lottery 200
posted by Mike Neff
Friday May 17, 2013
‘Rowdy’ Busch was back in his familiar No. 51 truck at his favorite track on the Truck schedule. Busch led 80 laps and thought he should have led more but had a fuel issue on pit road that resulted in him having to battle back through the field. The race was slowed by eight cautions that helped him work his way back through the field. Busch beat Brendan Gaughan to the finish by .488 seconds, while Max Gresham chased them both to the line for his first top three finish of his Truck career. Matt Crafton came home in fourth place after having to battle through a couple of tire mishaps during the event. Ty Dillon rounded out the top 5 for his first finish that high this season.
Busch led the race three times for his 80 laps. Miguel Paludo was second on the laps led board with 33. Gaughan, Gresham and Dillon also scored bonus points for leading laps. There were two cautions in the first 72 laps of the race while 29 of the last 62 laps were completed under the yellow flag.
Jeb Burton started the race on the pole but did not lead a lap. He did however end the race as the Rookie of the Race for his 13th place finish. Matt Crafton leads Burton by 22 points in the season standings after five races this season.
Matt Kenseth Snatches Victory from the Jaws of Defeat at Darlington
posted by Mike Neff
Sunday May 12, 2013
Kyle Busch appeared to be headed for another weekend sweep after winning the Nationwide race at Darlington on Friday night. However, a funny thing happened as they were bringing out the dustpan. Matt Kenseth chased down the dominant car of the night, passed him with relative ease and then strolled away to a 3.165 second victory. Kenseth led the final 13 laps after Busch had held the point for 265 of the 354 laps leading up to Kenseth’s race winning pass. After Kenseth worked around Busch, the No. 18 slid rapidly backwards over the final eight laps to fall from second to sixth place.
Joe Gibbs Racing did manage a 1-2 finish after sweeping the podium in Friday night’s Nationwide tilt. Denny Hamlin, in his first full race back in the car since his vertebrae fracture at California, soldiered through the pain of his arms, neck and shoulders more than his recovered back to wrestle a second place finish away from the Lady in Black. Coming home in third was Jeff Gordon, who turned his 700th career start into a top 3 finish. Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick rounded out the top 5 in the Bojangles Southern 500.
Kurt Busch started the race on the pole and led the first 51 laps before coming to the pits for a green flag stop. After the stops cycled through Busch was back at the point for 18 more laps before his brother began his domination. The race went green for the first 302 laps save a seven lap caution stint from lap 125 to lap 131. The final 65 laps saw four more cautions that flew for accidents involving Regan Smith, Brad Keselowski, Casey Mears, Kurt Busch, Josh Wise, David Reutimann and Kasey Kahne.
The race saw four leaders including Jeff Gordon in addition to the Busch brothers and Kenseth. The win is Kenseth’s 27th of his career and breaks a tie between himself and his teammate Kyle Busch. The win is Kenseth’s third this season which is the most among all of the competitors in the Cup series. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was the Rookie of the Race. Jeff Gordon’s top 5 finish was his 300th of his career. He joins Richard Petty, David Pearson and Bobby Allison as the only four drivers in the history of the sport to accomplish such a feat.
Busch Dominates at Darlington as JGR Sets Nationwide Series Record
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday May 10, 2013
Kyle Busch dominated the VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 on Friday night en route to his 56th career Nationwide Series victory and fifth series win of 2013. Joe Gibbs Racing in general was the class of the field all night at Darlington Raceway, claiming four of the top 5 finishing spots, with only fourth-place Joey Logano keeping them from sweeping the top four spots. It was a historic night for JGR, as no team has ever before placed four cars in the top 5. Elliott Sadler finished second to Busch and Brian Vickers third, with Logano and Matt Kenseth rounding out the top 5.
Busch led 107 of 147 laps on the way to the win. Sadler was the best among the Nationwide Regulars, finishing second despite an early spin in Turn 2, and gained points on leader Regan Smith, who finished seventh. Kyle Larson continued to impress at the Lady in Black, posting a sixth-place finish in his first Darlington start as he runs for rookie honors. Sam Hornish, Jr., who remained second in points, finished eighth while Kasey Kahne and Justin Allgaier filled the top 10.
Smith now leads Nationwide Series points by 28 over Hornish. Sadler jumps two spots to third on his second-place run as Justin Allgaier fell one place to fourth. Vickers gained three sports and is now fifth, 49 behind Smith. Austin Dillon, Parker Kligerman, Brian Scott, Alex Bowman, and Kyle Larson round out the top 10.
Joe Gibbs Racing Penalties Reduced Following Appeal
posted by Summer Bedgood
Wednesday May 8, 2013
Joe Gibbs Racing had many of their penalties for the No. 20 team reduced during the appeal process on Wednesday.
Driver Matt Kenseth and owner Joe Gibbs had their points penalties reduced from 50 to 12 points.
Crew chief Jason Ratcliff’s suspension has also been dropped from seven races to one, though he will still be forced to pay the $200,000 fine.
Not all of the penalties were reduced, however. Toyota Racing’s manufacturer points penalty was increased from five points to seven.
All other penalties were dropped, including the suspension of Joe Gibbs’ owners license, the loss of bonus points for the Chase earned at Kansas Speedway, and the loss of eligibility into the Sprint Unlimited garnered from the pole at Kansas Speedway.
JGR has accepted the penalties and will not appeal further.
Following a dominant win at Kansas Speedway a few weeks ago, Kenseth’s car failed post-race inspection when it was found that a connecting rod was 2.7 grams below the minimum weight. Toyota Racing Development accepted the blame for the incident.
The reduction moves Kenseth up to fourth in points, 66 points behind leader Jimmie Johnson.
JGR has not announced who will replace Ratcliff this weekend in Darlington.
The appeal was heard by Mark Arute, Dennis McGlynn, and Jack Housby.
NASCAR cannot appeal the revised penalties.
Penske Has Suspensions Reduced On Appeal
posted by Thomas Bowles
Wednesday May 8, 2013
Roger Penske’s team got some relief Tuesday from NASCAR’s Chief Appellate Officer John Middlebrook, as he chose to reduce penalties assessed to that organization at Texas Motor Speedway in early April. Middlebrook, after hearing the evidence from both sides Tuesday chose to reduce all suspensions in the case from six to two weeks, plus NASCAR’s All-Star Race on May 18th. That means the final consequences for both teams are the following:
No. 2 car
No. 22 car
Middlebrook’s official statement was short, simply stating, “After looking at all the facts, data, and interpretations from the rule book, I have decided to uphold the original fines and points penalties. However, I have decided to reduce the suspensions of the seven team members involved from six points races and the All-Star race to two points races and the All-Star Race.” However, it seemed both sides, after presenting their cases were far more pleased with how the case was handled during this portion of the appeal.
“We were able to talk about areas we worked in,” said Roger Penske, referring to the “gray area” of the NASCAR rulebook officials ultimately felt stepped over the line. “I’m very happy with the outcome. This sport has been built on innovation. All of us have tried to innovate in areas not defined in the rulebook. We were in that area.”
In conversations with the parties involved, it was clear the controversy surrounded parts designed to increase the rear-end angle at the back of both cars. In past years, with innovation limited through the Car of Tomorrow templates teams have played around with suspension systems designed to make the rear end of the car easier to “move.” The more the car skews in the corner, the easier it can be to handle and gain extra speed.
However, NASCAR had made rules designed to curb those types of innovations this year and made the determination Penske parts to build the rear suspension were unapproved. Why they had gone undetected in previous inspections was never addressed, along with claims someone else in the garage had alerted officials to possible inappropriate car construction. One thing Penske did admit, though is had this decision been issued by the initial appeals panel, he would not have pressed his luck with Middlebrook.
“All of us,” he said. “Have lost points for certain infractions over the years. The key thing is to have people back at the racetrack operating in full control.”
The end results leave Logano 18th in points, 146 behind championship leader Jimmie Johnson and 43 outside a Chase position. Keselowski is far more stable; fifth in points, he’s 69 behind and 45 ahead of 11th-place Matt Kenseth. Neither of the Penske cars have won a race this season.
“Moved on from last few weeks,” Keselowski tweeted Wednesday morning. “And ready to focus on @TooToughToTame (Darlington Raceway).”
The next round of NASCAR penalty appeals, focusing on Joe Gibbs Racing and Matt Kenseth will be heard on Wednesday morning.
Connect with Tom!
Penske Racing LOSES Penalty Case, Will Appeal To NSCRC John Middlebrook
posted by Thomas Bowles
Wednesday May 1, 2013
A three-member panel Wednesday unanimously upheld penalties assessed to Penske Racing after pre-race inspection at Texas Motor Speedway. Comprised of Pocono President Brandon Igdalsky, Bowman-Gray President Dale Pinilis and former NASCAR VP Paul Brooks, the trio determined the sanctioning body’s evidence was enough to “convict” Penske to the tune of points lost, suspensions given and $200,000 in fines.
Roger Penske, in response has pledged to send a final appeal to National Stock Car Racing Commissioner John Middlebrook. That hearing will occur Tuesday, May 7th at NASCAR’s Research and Development Center. Here’s a quick list of what penalties are pending (everything but the points deductions will be deferred, pending Middlebrook’s approval until after the final appeal):
No. 2 team
No. 22 team
NASCAR’s representation included Sprint Cup Director John Darby but not Vice President Robin Pemberton, who was whisked away to Florida on jury duty. Owner Roger Penske was in attendance to defend the allegations along with Team Manager Travis Geisler, Tim Cindric, Walt Czarnecki, Joey Logano’s crew chief Todd Gordon along with several other key principles.
UPDATE: The National Stock Car Racing Commission issued a brief statement, reviewing the penalties and then explaining the following.
“Upon hearing the testimony and carefully reviewing the facts, it was a unanimous decision by the National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel to uphold the original penalties assessed by NASCAR.”
“The Appellants have the right under Section 15 of the rule book to appeal this decision to the National Stock Car Racing Chief Appellate Officer.”
Connect with Tom!
Kyle Busch Wins Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown
posted by Thomas Bowles
Friday April 26, 2013
Who says Joe Gibbs Racing teammates don’t get along? Kyle Busch is certainly receiving gifts, from Denny Hamlin in the form of shiny trophies from winning the latter’s annual charity event. Rowdy was romping through the field again at Richmond Thursday night, taking control at the race’s midpoint and cruising during the latter stages to win the Showdown for the third time in the past six years. In a race that benefits the Denny Hamlin Foundation, created to help those with cystic fibrosis Busch had his late model hitting on all cyilnders down the stretch. Pulling away from fellow Cup driver David Ragan, in the final segment of the 75-lap race the outcome was simply never in doubt following a 5-minute break for pit stops prior to Lap 47. Ben Rhodes, Ronnie Bassett, Jr., and Garrett Campbell rounded out the top-5 finishers.
Other Cup drivers, including defending race champion Tony Stewart were in the field but never a factor up front. Smoke, actually extending his slumping start to 2013 into this race got wrecked before the halfway point and wound up 28th. Matt Kenseth, still distraught after a midweek penalty virtually negated his win at Kansas was never truly competitive, either; he finished 22nd.
Also on Thursday night, African-American driver Ryan Gifford won the first K&N Pro Series East race of his young career. Surviving a five-lap shootout, following a red flag he cruised home over Brandon Gdovic.
Connect with Tom!
Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Penalized As Engine Fails Kansas Post-Race Inspection
posted by Thomas Bowles
Wednesday April 24, 2013
Until the end of time, Matt Kenseth can say he crossed the finish line first at Kansas Sunday. NASCAR Record Books will say the same. But after a harsh series of penalties announced on Wednesday, should they stand that’s about the only thing Kenseth can hang his hat on after a successful weekend turned sour.
According to multiple reports, officials at the NASCAR R & D Center in North Carolina discovered a connecting rod on Kenseth’s engine, brought in for Kansas post-race inspection weighed three grams less than the minimum weight of 525g. The consequences, announced today are crippling for both driver and team. Kenseth, along with car owner Joe Gibbs have been docked 50 driver and owner points, actually reducing their overall totals heading into Kansas even though the No. 20 car won the race. That lost chunk of points drops Kenseth from eighth to 14th in the standings. More importantly, the win “won’t count” for either bonus points in the Chase or determine postseason eligibility; that means the driver, now in “Wild Card” position is considered to have one win so far this season instead of two.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg on these consequences. Crew chief Jason Radcliffe, fined $200,000 based on the infraction has also been suspended for the next six Sprint Cup points events, along with the All-Star Race. Toyota, whose TRD engine department ultimately supplies the JGR powerplants has had five points deducted from its total in the manufacturer’s championship. And finally, Joe Gibbs himself, already docked 50 owner points has had his license suspended by NASCAR, which means he’s ineligible to accrue owner points for the No. 20 until the next six Sprint Cup Series points races are completed.
Gibbs, NASCAR has clarified will still be able to travel to the racetrack despite a suspended license. In a tersely worded statement, the owner says he’ll appeal the ruling, which violated three parts of the series rulebook. The one most pertinent is Section 20-5.5.3(E) which states only magnetic steel connecting rods, with a minimum weight of 525.0 grams will be permitted. Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4J, which gives officials the right to penalize for parts they claim do not conform to NASCAR rules were also cited in the sport’s official release.
Toyota Racing Development’s Lee White, in a statement released early this afternoon took responsibility for the violation.
During NASCAR’s routine post-race tear down of Matt Kenseth’s race-winning car and engine from Kansas Speedway,” he stated, “One of our engine connecting rods weighed in approximately three grams under the legal minimum weight of 525 grams. None of the other seven connecting rods were found to be under the minimum weight. We take full responsibility for this issue with the engine used by the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) team this past Sunday in Kansas — JGR is not involved in the process of selecting parts or assembling the Cup Series engines. It was a simple oversight on TRD’s part and there was no intent to deceive, or to gain any type of competitive advantage. Toyota is a company that was built on integrity, and that remains one of the guiding principles of the company. The goal of TRD has always been — and will continue to be — to build high-performance engines that are reliable, durable and powerful, and within the guidelines established by NASCAR.”
Kenseth, who has led 482 laps this season, two higher than his total last year has been one of the strongest competitiors on the Sprint Cup track in 2013. His engines have also passed several previous inspections.
Johnny Sauter Penalized For Fuel Cell Infraction At Kansas
posted by Thomas Bowles
Wednesday April 24, 2013
Thorsport Racing, along with former Truck Series point leader Johnny Sauter are reeling this Wednesday after a major penalty involving their No. 98 Toyota. On Wednesday, NASCAR announced the team was fined $10,000, crew chief Joel Shear has been suspended for four races and 25 owner points were taken away as a result of a faulty fuel cell, confiscated during pre-race inspection at Kansas. Driver Sauter was also hit was a loss of 25 points, completely reshaping the championship Chase heading into the next race of the season at Charlotte May 17th.
According to NASCAR officials, the team violated multiple sections of the rulebook. The key ones involve Section 20B-16 and 20B-16.1B, regarding the proper size and functioning of fuel cells. “Once a fuel cell or fuel cell components have been certified,” the rules say, “Modifications of any kind will not be permitted.” The 16.1B portion refers to black safety foam, with a minimum height of eight inches that must be used as a safety mechanism when putting together the fuel cell itself. By violating that rule, NASCAR is insinuating the team modified or enhanced the cell in some way by cutting back / replacing that foam.
Section 12-1, actions detrimental to stock car racing was also listed as a rules violation along with 12-4K, which gives NASCAR Officials the leeway to penalize teams when they feel previously legal equipment was modified, in any manner after being initially inspected.
Thorsport, as of yet has not said whether they plan to appeal. The penalties mean Matt Crafton becomes the new Truck Series point leader, by 13 over Jeb Burton while Sauter gets pushed back into a tie for second place.
Find tons of cheap tickets to 2012 speedway races like Talladega NASCAR schedule, Brickyard 400 at Indy Motor Speedway, Coca Cola 600 Charlotte Motor Speedway tickets plus the full 2012 Monster Jam schedule
Check in with Matt and Jay on their site at CareyandCoffey.com.
|Subscribe to The Frontstretch Newsletter|
Thomas Bowles · Sunday April 24, 2005
No question about it, the 2005 Nextel Cup season can be broken down into three categories, despite the defending champ’s win on Saturday: Jimmie Johnson, Greg Biffle, and everyone else. Biffle has arguably been the most dominant on the track, leading all drivers in laps led, but has suffered from poor pit strategy and mechanical problems, ultimately causing a slip in the standings. Meanwhile, Johnson has taken advantage, using NASCAR’s point system to lap the field with his incredible consistency. His streak of 13 Top 10 finishes, which came to an end this Saturday in Phoenix, has been well documented. We’re only eight races into the season, but Johnson already has a 173-point lead over defending champion Kurt Busch in second place, and leads 10th-place Rusty Wallace by 300 points. At the rate we’re going, the 9th and 10th-place finishers won’t deserve to have their points reset for the Chase after race 26, as they could be as many as 900 or 1,000 points behind the 48 car.
But things aren’t all peachy over in Jimmie-land. Coming into this season, Johnson had developed an excellent image as a clean-cut, All-American guy, a personable driver with an easygoing personality, newly married with a beautiful wife. But most importantly, Johnson was looked at as a “clean,” respected driver; someone you could race side-by-side or in front of without a worry in the world of being run over.
But that reputation is being challenged. For the first time, Johnson is becoming the center of attention for some questionable on-track incidents, threatening his “good guy” image that had thrust him into a world of overwhelming popularity. At Bristol, some aggressive driving by Johnson appeared to be the cause of a back-straightaway wreck that took out Jeff Burton and defending champion Kurt Busch. Burton, usually a cool customer, was so angry he walked up the track and expressed his displeasure to Johnson as he passed by, just before walking to the ambulance for the obligatory trip to the infield care center. Busch’s bell was rung by a hard impact with Burton, but he also wasted no time in expressing his anger towards Johnson’s driving style after exiting the infield care center shortly after the incident.
This week, we had more of the same. Johnson started going at it with NASCAR’s resident hothead, Tony Stewart, shortly past the halfway point of Saturday’s race at Phoenix. A back-and-forth battle of rubbing fenders, it ended with the 48 punting the 20 heading into Turn 3. A five-car pileup ensued, effectively ending the chances of contenders Stewart, Rusty Wallace, and several others to grab solid finishes. Meanwhile, Johnson drove away unscathed for the second time in two major incidents.
While Wallace was pretty matter-of-fact in his statements about the matter (“The 48 punted the 20” was among his post-race comments), Stewart was a little more upset.
“I don’t know what he (Johnson) was doing,” Stewart said. “He was running guys up and down the racetrack. He about ran (Dale Earnhardt) Junior into the wall…and then he finally put me backwards. So I don’t know what was wrong with him tonight.”
While Johnson’s night wasn’t exactly stellar after that (he finished 15th), the fact remains he was able to finish the race, while several competitors finished the night in the garage after a wreck he started. This was similar to what happened at Bristol, where Johnson finished solidly in the Top 10 while Busch and Burton had their days ended by their crash.
Now, this article isn’t meant to bash Jimmie Johnson. Two incidents does not a reckless driver make, especially not with Johnson’s track record. Not only that, but one of these situations occurred at Bristol, which creates wrecks more quickly then the blink of an eye.
Still, there’s a point to make here. Johnson’s leading the points, which puts him under greater scrutiny than most drivers. Every move he makes is going to grab some media coverage, and when he makes a mistake, he deserves to be scrutinized for it. Add to the wrecks the rules violation at Las Vegas which cost the team 25 points (and nearly cost them Chad Knaus for 2 weeks) and it’s clear the image of Johnson has taken a hit. Fans usually referred to Johnson as a Brady Bunch-like aw-shucks clean-cut driver; now, it seems Carl Edwards is rapidly filling that role, while fans struggle to figure out where Johnson fits in the grand scheme of things. As Johnson’s teammate Jeff Gordon has found out through the years, fans can turn on you for any reason, any time, and by not being more humble in admitting his mistakes in either incident, Johnson is risking alienating a fan base that took time and energy to build.
And no doubt about it, those wrecks were some pretty big mistakes. Johnson has now “crossed” not one but two drivers likely to be involved in this year’s Chase: Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart. Burton and Wallace were also upset, but they aren’t known to hold a grudge; both Busch and Stewart, on the other hand, have known how to give a payback when the time is right. And while Johnson could apologize until he’s blue in the face, nothing can take back the fact that he took potential Top 5 finishes away from both. Simply put, you don’t want to anger people racing for a yearlong trophy that will make you do anything to engrave your name on.
The best part of all this is Johnson doesn’t need to be driving so aggressively. Sure, as a race car driver you’re going to constantly be gunning to win the race, and pass any driver you can if you have a good car. But by the way Johnson has already separated himself from the rest of the Nextel Cup field this season, battling with Tony Stewart heavy and heated with 100 laps to go in the race may not be so smart in the grand scheme of things, when Johnson can settle in behind and easily protect his comfortable point lead. At Bristol, Johnson had the same experience. Had he been a little more patient, he would have easily finished in nearly the same spot he ended up in, while saving two drivers totalled race cars and extreme frustration.
Last year, Johnson’s team led the points as well but peaked too early, and had an inevitable string of bad luck just before the Chase come back to bite them. This year, if Johnson isn’t careful, he’ll be bit by bad luck of a different kind. It’s amazing what a small tap to the rear bumper can do, especially when it’s time for a payback with the Nextel Cup Trophy on the line.
NEW YEAR? NEW NEWSLETTER. LOOKING FOR THE INFO YOU NEED ABOUT NASCAR IN 2013 – SENT RIGHT TO YOUR EMAIL INBOX?
Well, you’ve come to the right place. The Frontstretch Newsletter gives you more of the daily news, commentary, and racing features from your favorite writers you know and love. Don’t waste another minute – click here to sign up and get all the information you need. We’re here to make sure you stay informed … so make sure you jump on for the ride!
©2000 - 2008 Thomas Bowles and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
If this had been the 48 and the 6, or the 48 and the 07, I would believe that it was all JJ’s fault. Since it involves one of the more notorious drivers, famous for making stupid mistakes when angry himself, I’m willing to cut JJ some slack.
But I know that’s something that many people won’t do regardless, because they’re predisposed to not like Jimmie, some because he drives for HMS, others because the 48 is clearly the team to beat right now.
both incidents resulted in not just one car, but MULTIPLE cars being wrecked. And not the agressor’s…
Earnhardt was famous for this—- and the reason that just as many fans “hated” him as “loved” him. Jimmie won’t lose all of his fans, and will probably gain some new ones. But, this fact remains…if you own up to what you do, then people respect you. If you have a “it’s not my fault” attitude, the fans, and more importantly, the other drivers, will lose respect for you.
Could it be that NASCAR is playing favorites????You betcha!!!That is exactly what is happening.
BTW, the 2 drivers involved in the incident I mentioned were Dale Earnhardt & Rusty Wallace. Earnhardt was penalized one lap for spinning Rusty out at Bristol. He did come back to finish 2nd to Terry Labonte and that was before the day of the “FREE PASS” which NASCAR seems to be sure goes to the drivers “THEY” want to get.
What happened at Phoenix, to me, was not intentional, but the way Jimmie reacted was uncalled for. He even said on his radio that Tony “deserved it.” Oh, really?
And don’t forget that Jimmie got into Tony at Daytona this year, so it’s not just two incidents.
But someone here mentioned how Dale Earnhardt may have caused his fair share of wrecks, but generally owned up to it…JJ doesn’t seem to want to admit that he could have made a mistake. I was of the segment of fans who loved to hate Earnhardt…but I respected him. JJ hasn’t done much in my mind in these incidents recently to earn my respect. Not entirely because of the incidents themselves, but because of his reaction to them.
Someone pointed out they wouldn’t want to see false humility out of him, taking the blame for everything, like some other drivers do. That’s fine, I agree, it would just look fake on him. But every time he DOES admit he did something wrong, he always qualifies it: “I got into __ accidentally, I’m really sorry, but he was running me all over the track, giving me the finger and…”
Quit qualifying things, JJ. Just admit you made a mistake, and move on!!
Feel better Josh? Not all women are defending Jimmie! ;)
FYI, we’ve been discussing this on the message board, too…thank God for race incidents, they make the time between races go by all the faster!! :)
It’s part of what makes being a racing fan so much fun: it’s okay if my guy does it to you but if you do it to my guy…lol.
I like the debating and the contention. I’m kinda scared of the folks who take it all too seriously but they’re few and we get to mock them!
On to Talladega! I wonder who’ll be zoomin’ who? *g*
The message from NASCAR is clear… the Hendrick teams are allowed to live by a different set of rules…cheating is ok, punting other cars is ok….just ask JJ—he’ll tell you “it wasn’t my fault. I would never do that.”
But then again, why should NASCAR waste their time punishing a Hendrick team… Hendrick teams just have to go cry to the appeal board and get their punishment overturned anyway.
watches all the races and we have lost all respect for Jimmy. He is not acting like championship material. Nascar lets him get away
with everthing even let him win his appeal for cheating. I sure hope this week the drivers gang up on him and send him to the garage….
Secondly, yes racing accidents happen. When they do, it’s not hard to say it’s my fault. I am not a junior fan by any strecth, but when he clipped the back of Vickers and wrecked both cars, the first thing he did is apologize to vickers for being a little too agressive. It wasn’t intentional, but the 8 knew he could of avoided it. And it is already forgotten because of a simple “My Fault”
He saw how Kurt was doing at Bristol & how Kurt & Tony was doing at Phoenix & the possible threat of working on his (JJ) point lead. What is he going to do hit every top driver who is a threat (except for his boss AKA other top cry baby Jeff). JJ hasn’t even tried to come near his boss. If he did Jeff might give him a fine & not tell NASCAR or the world. I’m not a Kurt Busch fan but, he & Tony need to teach the (BOY) what he(JJ,JEFF Gordon)call a racing incident.
Moving on, Jimmie was confused when the incident with Tony happened. He wasn’t sure what Tony was doing and he even said to his spotter, someone go tell him I would never intentionally wreck someone.
Tony and Jimmie are good buddies..as said by Tony and Jimmie themselves. And Tony is not stupid enough to “get Jimmie back” in the last 10, because, I’m sure, Nascar will be watching closely as they did last year and gave warnings to everyone about taking out any top ten drivers..even taking out each other. And Tony’s not a dirty driver either. I am also a Tony fan.
Also, would everyone please stop referring to the Burton thing? That was taken care after the Bristol race and already forgotten. Jimmie owned up to that..did he not???
Some people just need to grow up.
It was an accident. Maybe Tony helped – or maybe Jimmie just couldn’t get on the breaks hard enough.
People really need to get over it. I’m sure the drivers have already sorted it out between themselves. There isn’t quite all the drama that a lot of people think.
Dale Sr. & Jeff Gordon at least had the balls to say “Yeah I hit him and he can come talk to me later”. Jimmie Johnson has got into Harvick, Burton and Stewart, in just 8 races and none were his fault. Those incidents also took out several cars that were capable of good finishes. Jimmie needs grow some balls and admit his mistakes or retaliations. JJ, be a man or go race with Shawna Robinson
Just wanted to thank everyone for posting their thoughts. What a great response, although I know there are some of you who disagree…I will try and answer every one of these comments as quickly as I can, hopefully by tomorrow night I will have gotten back to you all.
Our Mirror Driving column also touches on this issue. It runs on Wednesdays and is on the main page; check it out!
p.s. Rusty is still WHINNING !
Recent articles from Tom Bowles:
Did You Notice? ... The Evolution Of An Ending, Double Duty's Drought And Charlotte Controversy
Did You Notice? ... Saturday Night Slowdowns, Clinching The Postseason Early And Quick Hits
Did You Notice?... Penske's Appeal Resolution Still Comes With Unanswered Questions
Did You Notice? ... Silly Season Checkup And NASCAR's Youth Problem
Did You Notice? ... "Cheating" Equals Credibility Crisis, Who NASCAR's Chasing And Dodging Brands
If you want to know more about Tom Bowles or to view all of his articles here at the Frontstretch, check out his archive and bio page.
Want even more Tom Bowles? Check out Tom's archive at SI.com.