Hamlin Snags Coca-Cola 600 Pole With Track Record Time
posted by Amy Henderson
Thursday May 23, 2013
Denny Hamlin shattered the track qualifying record at Charlotte Motor Speedway as he rocketed to the pole for Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600. Hamlin had a lap time of 27.604 seconds, or 195.624 miles per hour. Several drivers drove past the old record, set by Greg Biffle in 2012, but it was Hamlin who came out at the top of the heap and holds the new record. Kurt Busch will start on the outside of the front row. Matt Kenseth, Mark Martin, and Clint Bowyer round out the top 5. Kasey Kahne, Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, Jamie McMurray, and Ryan Newman hold down sixth through tenth places.
The pole is Hamlin’s second of 2013; he also started in front at Fontana before an injury in that race sidelined him for over a month. Hamlin says that his back feels “nearly 100%” and that it doesn’t cause him pain while driving. He added that winning the pole helped solidify for him that he is back at a competitive level, but he wants one more thing before he’ll be satisfied.
“I think winning would do that. I think ultimately getting the big trophy on Sunday is the validation that you’re truly back,” said Hamlin after his lap. “For me, it’s going to take some wins and some really good consistency throughout these summer months to put ourselves in position to have a chance at a championship. That’s what we’re here for. Even these small victories though give me that confidence that I’m still capable, and I’m still able to do the job at 100 percent like I should be. Any kind of confidence booster for me — it’s always a plus on Sunday.”
The Cup teams are next on track Saturday at 10 AM for the weekend’s second practice. Final practice for Sunday’s race is Saturday afternoon at one o’clock. The Coca-Cola 600 is scheduled to start at 6 PM on Sunday and will air on FOX.
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.
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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.”
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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.
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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.
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
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Bowles-Eye View · Thomas Bowles · Sunday August 20, 2006
The surprise of the weekend at Michigan International Speedway was a sound so ridiculously out of place during driver introductions, some fans actually looked around to see if someone was doing something stupid on the track rather than directing their emotions to the famous wheelman passing through the center of the stage. Surely, it seemed, the situation was nothing more than a ridiculous dream, the type where you end up doing something you could never accomplish in real life and then you wake up and go, "Well, it would have never happened anyway."
But this Sunday afternoon at the Irish Hills, that impossible dream did happen. No kiddingâ€¦Dale Earnhardt, Jr. got booed.
Now, if it were any other driver in this situation, the reaction was somewhat understandable. Junior was less than 24 hours removed from scoring, arguably, the most controversial win of his career, turning the back bumper of Carl Edwards' Ford on the straightaway, no less, in order to win his second Busch race of the season. It's a move that would have made his father proudâ€¦ the exact type of move his son has never seemed to embrace.
Remaining consistent in distancing himself from such things throughout his postrace comments that day, Junior was adamant. He would never intentionally wreck someone, not even a man like Edwards who happened to have cost the No. 8 team a shot at the championship by wrecking Junior late in the Atlanta race back in 2004. The fans weren't buying it, though; neither was the replay, which clearly showed Junior hit Edwards not once but twice, finishing off a ride for Edwards that wouldn't end until he hit the inside wall. So, there he was, Junior held accountable for a rare crime he hardly ever commits, but one he committed nonetheless. It also didn't help that the guy he tore up happens to be perceived, whether or not it's actually true, as the nicest driver ever to step foot in the sport.
Still, despite the controversy, let's not forgetâ€¦ this was Junior. We're talking eager to please, NASCAR's Most Popular Driver, guy you'd most like to invite out for a beer Junior. Surely, it would take just one night for the fans to forget what had happened, and by Sunday morning, they'd be cheering them as loudly as ever.
Guess not. Instead, the reaction continued to be negative, a type of negativity that could easily affect a driver about to go out and fight for the final spot in the Chase at a place where he had never finished in the Top 5 until the race here this past June. Oh, and that's not to mention his biggest challenger for that 10th and final spot, Kasey Kahne, who won the last race held at the track.
Surely, fan reaction had to have Junior on edge, right?
"People will form an opinion (on the incident), think what they want to think about it," said Junior on Sunday prior to the race.
Just like that, case closed. No biggie; boos from the fans, two meetings with NASCAR officials and Edwards about the incident, and constant questions about it Saturday and Sunday; none of that fazed him. Junior got in the car, drove it to the front, fought back from another controversy, a pit road mistake by his crew that put him all the way back to 20th late in the race, and eventually finished in 6th.
What's the lesson here? Simply not to ever underestimate the power of an attitude adjustment. It's these small moments that allow for deeper observation into just how much someone like Junior has changed.
And what an adjustment it is, especially for a man who last year who didn't need much to happen during a race weekend to leave with his head down and his team in disarray. After years of figuring things out, last year Junior appeared to go through a growing up stage, with decisions like the D.E.I. crew swap a clear expression of his desire to put his own stamp on an organization through which he has increasingly realized he is the centerpiece. Only thing is, those decisions didn't work out, and Junior seemed unsure about how to handle it, unable to figure out how to rectify the problem until his season was well beyond saving.
This year, it's a bit of a different story. Coming up on 32 years old, now five years past the death that will never fade, Junior is finally showing signs of taking full control of all that surrounds him. The past few months more than any other have seen decisions that show a marked leap of maturity. Not only has Junior acquired his own name, but he had the guts and the resolve to fire one of his good friends, Mark McFarland, from his own Busch team, replacing him with Shane Huffman, a driver that he claimed could get more "emotional."
“I just expected [McFarland] to have more of a killer instinct to him,” said Earnhardt, Jr. at the time. “I feel like he’s well capable behind the wheel, but that doesn’t always cut it."
Strong words from someone who, a few years back, seemed more concerned with whether or not he'd step on the wrong toe and make someone mad. Now, Junior is becoming a leader, capable of not only running his own team but steering the ship of his own life.
Which brings us back to the boos. The Earnhardt legend combined with a laid back persona has made Junior one of the most marketable personalities that the sport will come across in the next 50 years. That marketability will never go away. But in the midst of all this appreciation is developing a man with opinions, along with a driving style all his own apart from his dad that, while tamer, will occasionally ruffle feathers in its own way in order to get his point across. That ruffling causes controversy, strong opinions causing universal appreciation to break down into the side that likes you for who you are, and the side that liked you for who you were perceived to be. Just like the fallout that happens in all sorts of different situations, like Dale Jarrett's move to Toyota, for example, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. will eventually lose some fans as he goes through this maturation process. He happened to get a bunch mad in one full swoop, but over time it was bound to happen. People change, and fans don't always change with their drivers.
Yes, the boos may have reigned down Sunday, but the new Junior appeared unfazed. Maybe this is the attitude adjustment he's always needed to get over the hump to the next step in his career.
Thirteen races left to wait and see.
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NOPE..WE CAN’T HEAR YOU!!
I understand that he road with Kurt Busch during driver introductions on Sunday, hense the boos. I also understand that on Saturday, from fans that were at Saturday’s race, that many of the boos were for Carl when the jumbo TV’s continued to show replays of the incident during the victory celebration. I also understand that Carl was booed during introductions on Sunday. What say?
He hears them.
Earnhardt has no need to worry about the booing because he has no fear of being punished by NASCAR. If Kurt Bush had of turned Jr. the way Jr. turned Edwards the fines and suspensions would have been vast. However Jr. and Stewart are pretty much free to do as they wish. That comes from the fact that they do put so many people in the seats. NASCAR has two sets of rules and on Saturday that was apparent.
He shouldn’t listen..he is not out there to make sure everyone likes him. He is out there to win races. Ask Carl..who did the same thing to him few years ago. His father never cared what everyone thought and neither should he!
It’s killing Junior. It’s going to get in his head and eat at him till he doesn’t make the chase. The boos were for him and only him and he knows it!
I don’t know what all the hoopla is about. If the situation were reversed, Carl would have done the same thing. I’m sure the boo’s do bother Jr. alittle, but he’ll get over it and move on and so should Carl.
Just a note…Mark Martin is the nicest guy ever in this sport. Period. Carl will never hold a candle to him. And on that note, I’ve heard that Carl had a lot of “choice” words come out of his mouth Saturday in victory lane, and he always seems to try to give a payback in a place he shouldn’t. Real nice guy I tell ya.
Earnhardt, Gordon, and Edwards were all racing full throttle for the win on the last lap. Edwards got loose and slid up the track in front of Jr. at somewhere in the neighborhood of 200 mph. Yes, Earnhardt hit Edwards’ rear bumper and sent him spinning through the grass. Slamming on the brakes at that speed is not an option. It was just one of those things that sometimes happen on a race track when cars are running close together at high speed.
It was a “racin deal”. Get over it. Would you be booing if the roles were reversed and Edwards had been the one to wreck Earnhardt?
Why would you think that NASCAR wouldn’t have punished Junior if they thought that it was his fault? They sure didn’t hesitate to throw the book at him when he said”s—t” on television.
It isn’t like Jr was the first person this season to hit and run to take a win. Carl Edwards tries to come off as the choir boy of NASCAR when it is known that he isn’t. Funny how all those boo’s turned to standing cheers when Jr took the lead yesterday…
Rationalize all you want about the fan boos at the track. One point that is becoming clearly evident is that what the fans think is of NO CONCERN to anyone at Nascar.
Nascar is a business to make as much money as possible. They could care less what you think. However, they will gladly take your money with a smile.
It’s not about racing anymore folks!
I want anyone who has an opinion on this to closely view the replay of this incident from Jr.’s in-car. It clearly shows Edwards’ rear end twitch back and forth near the exit of 2 indicating a loose condition (which Jr. thought happened). You get loose, you loose speed period.
The fact of the matter is that Edwards got loose (ran out of talent maybe) and THAT IS EXACTLY why Jr. hit him. Jr. was dead in it and Edwards wasn’t because he got loose. This is the fact that everyone seems to be missing (or more likely ignoring it for the sake of the drama).
Jr. would never put someone else in harms way for the sake of winning a race. Those of you who think so suffer from severe idiocy.
What Edwards did after the race, on the track, is what needs to be addressed….more so than what happened in Victory Lane. Those actions were absurd. Especially when you consider some of the tricks Edwards himself has pulled ultimately wrecking others.
Do as I say not as I do…...heh Edwards?
Jr. did show some class in dealing with the confrontation with Edwards.
How Edwards dealt with what happened does need to be addressed and I’m positive Nascar will respond with some penalties.
Edwards would be wise to heed the advise he was generously given by Jr. to not let these types of incidents get to him so much and to let it go.
What Jr. did Saturday was definitely an exception to his typical style of racing. Personally, I will always enjoy good hard racing the likes of what we saw with Kurt Busch and Robby Gordon over what we saw with Jr. and Edwards any day!
I divide the blame for the incident 50-50.
Carl was in a bad position being loose and having to check up or wreck himself. Jr. had the choice to let off or not. He chose not to because it was the last lap.
In one way I want to see Jr. blasted for wrecking Carl—because people are STILL blasting Kurt for bumping Kenseth for the Bristol win even though Kenseth didn’t wreck.
But its not really fair to Jr., who might not have been able to prevent the wreck anyway—at least not without wrecking himself instead. Though it must be remembered that he could have lifted and chose not to.
Mainly, I wanted to see Robby awarded the win because he was in front of Jr. by a good fender’s length before Jr. turned Carl across his nose.
i have no idea why Dale Jr fans would boo him after something like that… if you are gonna boo someone for doing something ONCE that he never does.. i dont think thats the makings of a true fan. im a huge dale jr fan and i will never boo him even if he does something wrong. i dont think most of the rock solid dale jr fan will either and the ones who think they are rock solid and booed him better check again.
I was at the race and I witnessed the impossible, people, even people dress in red booing Junior. At first I thought they were booing Edwards then I realized it was Junior. I think I was the only one cheering for Junior, simply because I don’t like Edwards. Thanks Junior for a great ending.
And if the roles were reversed you know Carl would have hit the brakes and let Junior regain his car… Since in the past Carl has been so understanding of other drivers and NEVER has caused anyone else to wreck. Can you smell the sarcasm?
And let’s not forget Mears was coming hard and fast into the mix. I know Jr did bump Carl, but let’s face facts, Carl is the master of hitting another car and getting position. Just ask the multitude of drivers he’s helped get out of the way. I seem to recall Kyle Petty coming to Carl after Bristol and having a chat after Carl helped move them
What everyone forgets is that NASCAR has never (usually) awarded fines for the “initial contact” unless “blatantly dangerous”. If there is any kind of “judgement” to the call on whether it was intentional or not they usually back off. However, they have almost ALWAYS stepped in on “retaliation”. So Jr won’t be fined because it was a judgement call whether he did anything wrong, but what Carl did was retaliation and WILL be fined/punished. I don’t get where everyone thinks NASCAR is so unfair…anyone still go to local short tracks? (Talk about unfair calls!!)
Junior bumped him once and didn’t lift, and bumped him again which took him out. He could have lifted but chose not to. I don’t think it was necessarily intentional, but it was avoidable.
The problem I have is all of the people who are making the statement that it was a move his Deddy would have been proud of. Deddy didn’t do anything of the sort on a high speed track like Michigan. Bristol, you bet. Martinsville, sure. North Wilkesboro, any day. But Michigan, no way. He would not take someone out on a high speed track because of the greatly increased potential for disaster. I think Deddy would have had a stern talking with the boy about when and where you spin someone, and Michigan is not one of those places.
Its clear to me that the booing was not directed toward Jr to begin with. If you watched on tv, the boo’s began when they interviewed Carl, and that interview was shown on the jumbotron. It was Carl getting booed by Jr fans for hitting him after the race. Simple. But I think Carl had every right to be upset with Earnhardt. He hit him twice, not once. Funny how on Sunday, Jr got the “Good Hands” award for avoiding a slow car that passed across the nose of his car. Jr had to slow down DRAMATICALLY to avoid that guy, but he didnt let off for Carl. In fact, he made sure not to back off because he hit him 2 times to finish him off.
No, he is not hearing it and neither is Nascar.Junior and Jeff Gor-don as he now is called can get away with anything.The rules that apply to others aren’t the same for them.He could have killed Carl and Nascar is more concerned about what happen after the wreck.Life must not be important to them at all,just Junior.
My, if Junior fans were booing him, then they’re either not true fans or idiots. Unreal! Carl would, and has done the same thing. I don’t like Carl but I actually felt sorry for him. He does need to settle down some but at least Junior didn’t escalate the whole thing and provoke him into making an even bigger a** of himself than he already had. Hey all I’ll say to Junior is, I’ll be cheering first place, last place whatever, and to those who booed what a racer does, well you might want to switch sports because that’s pretty pathetic. And to all you armchair NASCAR guys, come back when you’ve actually driven a car 200 MPH in traffic and tell me how you’d do it. Don’t forget, you only have a split second to decide AND then you’ll have to listen to all the chair jockeys second guess you. Have fun!
Dale Sr. once said ‘If you get booed on Sunday, you go to the bank on Monday’. I am paraphrasing, but you get the idea.
It was a racin deal pure and simple. Carl would have done the same thing if he was in Junior’s place. Two laps to go, its time to go! Junior got booed because it was percieved as an intentional punt. But if Carl had not gotten loose, I think things would have been different. Also, on Sunday, when Junior passed Carl for the lead, the crowd cheered. Carl needs to calm down a bit. Yeah, he should have been mad. But Jr isnt in the practice of wrecking people. He is much too clean of a racer. In fact too clean. With two laps to go, politeness goes out the window. It was good racing. Carl needs anger management.
To those who think DE Sr. would never bump some one at a high speed track they should talk to Rusty Wallace about the time he went barrel rolling at Daytona or Bill Elliott at Charlotte. All of the drivers today need to take a lesson from those like Petty and Pearson. They used to wreck each other until they came up with an agreement among themselves that if your front bumper is not up to the window of the car you are passing you don’t bump. That used to be what NASCAR looked for but not any more.
Go Jr!!! The #8 Rules!!! Get far enough ahead of the car behind you and they can’t bump you, if not, QUIT WHINNING about it!!!
Although this was not even on Jr’s mind I have to bring up 2004 again to all those against Jr.; October’04, Jr. is in the run for the championship, Edwards is a rookie, Jr passes Edwards and slides up in front of him on the backstrech. Does Edwards lift ? No, he turns Jr. around and takes him out of contention for the Cup. Since that day I have no respect for Edwards and never will. Saturday was a racin deal, just because Edwards is loose Jr. should back off and lose the race ? Don’t think so. Plus this was a Busch race, they run those for fun. Had this been on Sunday with a pts contender, Jr. might give them more slack, though I would hope that he wouldn’t. Jr. needs to toughen up a bit in my opinion, maybe this is a new beginning. GO 8 !
carl does JESSE JAMES country proud. missouri boys can feud with the best!
Fact: Edwards got loose. Fact: Junior hit him. Fact: NASCAR has always adhered to an “anything goes” rule for the last lap. Look at history: Jeff Gordon dumps Rusty Wallace at Bristol. Jeff Gordon dumps Matt Kenseth at Chicago. Jeff Gordon nearly runs Jeff Burton into the INSIDE wall at Darlington, NASCAR widest track. (See a pattern here?) If Jeff Gordon can cause at least three wrecks on the last lap of races and come out smelling like roses, why can’t something that was clearly a result of Edwards getting loose and Junior refusing to back off because it was the last lap appear just as innocent? Junior will always be under the microscope and everything he does will be magnified, in part for what he has done on the track but mstly because of what his father did before him. Win or lose, he will be scrutinized more than any other driver.
Edwards has a right to be upset, just as he had a right to be upset at Pocono. However, being rightfully upset does NOT give him an excuse to put people in harm’s way. Exacting revenge by spinning Stewart on pit road and hitting Jr. while his arm was holding on to the A-post AFTER the race was complete could have had disastrous results. The actions of Stewart and Jr., while maybe not the brightest of moves, were in the heat of battle. Edwards’ retaliations were calculated, and could have seriously hurt several people. For that, he should be punished harshly. I like Edwards, but I think NASCAR needs to send a message that putting drivers, crew members, and it’s own officials in harms way to settle a score will absolutely NOT be tolerated.
Dale Jr should have dented his nose when he came into Victory Cirle, the “old man” would have!!!
lol…there it is, someone trying to deflect this away from jr onto jeff gordon….i knew that was coming
i am a no.#1 fan of jr. always have been and always will be!!!
carl should have the hammer come down on him hard, from nascar. not for being mad but for what he did!!! three things…. hitting jr. on the track, going to victory lane and grabing jr. fire suit… to bad jr. is such a nice guy, i would have flored him!!! go jr.!!!!
lots of non facts in these posts…...gordon didnt dump kenseth on the last lap he had four left and could have passed cleanly. jr was the one responible for the wreck at atlanta, not carl. jr was passing carl and he came back up to soon. he was not clfear and as he was the one passing….it was his responsiblity. edwards couldnt have checked up if he wanted to. sdo to those saying jr was just paying him back….BS. lastly….everyone of you defending jr….i want to see you here defending the next driver that punts junior with two to go
Posted by Randy: You get loose, you loose (sic) speed period.
So, if you are a professional racecar driver driving behind a car that is pretty much guaranteed to lose speed, wouldn’t you try to avoid that car? Dale had plenty of time to lift, and decided not to. I, for one, don’t fault him for doing what he did, but I don’t agree with all these arguments that he had no other option. I think it’s clear that he made the decision to not lift knowing it would help him win, but would wreck Edwards in the process.
“I’m just so glad to be here” the new JAWS
NASCAR’s come a long way. It seems to me that the #3 car was extremely good at the tap and go and that moves like those are a part of racing lore. If NACSAR lillies out on all of this talk, group hugs will be required after the race. Stewart’s right…Edwards should change his name to Haskall. No one seemed too excited at Atlanta when the tables were turned. Didn’t Edwards say something broke in the car.
I am liking Carl Edwards more and more as the year goes on. Now if only he would follow up with a good butt whippin of [sic] Tony. And Golden Boy 8 wants no part of Carl. Wouldnâ€™t even be a fair fight.
Well I must say it has been entertaining to read these ‘views’ of what happened. What I take from them is that 99% of you fans watched with your emotions and 1% with your eyes. NASCAR runs a business and deals in facts and rules not emotions. If you all were really honest you would admit that if your favorite driver was in the same position as Dale Jr. in Saturday’s race, your favorite driver would NOT have lifted, he would have done the same as Dale Jr.
The object of the race is to WIN and you don’t win by lifting and letting others get ahead of you. You all are seeing Dale Jr. starting to grow up and take his racing career seriously. I’m sure Dale Jr. heard the boo’s but as he said,
“The fans will make up their own minds on what happened and nothing he said would change them.” I think he is correct. As for Carl Edwards – he needs to stop whining and take his loss like a man, after all he has hit several out of his way since he came to NASCAR.
Carl is no angel,and if he was going faster Dale Jr would not have got to his bumper. Too bad rubbing is racing.
The only thing I don’t like is this new way of thinking that when the guy ahead of you slows it’s ok to keep your foot in it. That folks is a dangerous game. I recall Jr. ripping on Blaney a little bit when Blaney bumped him at California. People that gas pedal has a hinge on it for a reason. I don’t care who is involved that is a rotten way to race. And whoever said Jr. hit Edwards bumper twice was right on. Watch the replay.
For those of you who say “Anything goes on the last lap” need to realize this wasn’t on the last lap…they had yet to take the white flag. At Bristol or Martinsville, I can see doing something like that to get by with a few laps to go, but this was a BIG, HIGH-SPEED track…plenty of time yet to back off, and try again to get around Carl.
Jr apologized to Carl, that’s fine, but how bad would Jr feel right now if Carl were in the hospital for injuries received when he barrel-rolled down the backstretch??? No-one seems to think about that, but watch the replays: Carl was a HAIR from barrel-rolling…and possibly injuring more than his hand.
Thank you to everybody who remembers Atlanta in 2004. Edwards clearly caused the wreck that took Jr. out, despite what revisionist historian jo smelser would have us believe. The most important thing to remember about that race was that Jr. didn’t have a bad thing to say to Edwards about it afterward. Even though it wrecked his shot at a first championship, you didn’t see Jr. going ape. He chalked it up to Edwards’ inexperience and praised the team that gave him a great race car.
Isn’t is amazing that when BudBoy happens to do a spin for the win on someone its a racin deal, or rubbin is racin, or its OK not to lift for a slower car. But when Gordon does exactly the same thing, the world is coming to an end. If its good for one its good for both. Isnt a thing different between the 2 incidents.
You say that Earnhardt Jr “chalked it up to Edwards’ inexperience…” So what was Earnhardt’s excuse on Saturday?
did gordon get boo’d for turning kenseth at chicago? did he get punished.. the answer is yes.. and no.
case closed.. and if you ask me what the 24 did in chicago was NOT a racing deal.. he could have passed to either side, he CHOSE to go through the 17.
had to laugh that the MIS race came down to the 17 and the 24.. again. would have been funny to see a replay of chicago.. then who would be booing??
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