This Week in NASCAR [Chicago Chase Edition]

The more things change, the more they stay the same

9/13/13 in NASCAR   |   Debi_L   |   11862 respect

Blog Photo - This Week in NASCAR [Chicago Chase Edition]It's a blame game, but really, did anyone really do anything different than they might have 25 years ago?

Michael Waltrip has become the talk of NASCAR fans, and not in a good way.  Michael Waltrip Racing has had their share of penalties in past years, for some of the weirdest infractions we've heard of.  Remember the tainted fuel?

Well this time it was because of team communications.  General Manager Ty Norris called Brian Vickers into the pits for a "phantom" pit stop, giving Martin Truex Jr. an on-track advantage, and an advantage leading into the Chase.  When that wasn't enough, Clint Bowyer spun, bringing out a caution.  Martin Truex Jr ended up in the Chase, Jeff Gordon and Ryan Newman did not.

After reviewing the team communications, NASCAR handed down a huge penalty to MWR, namely $300,000 in fines, suspension of Norris and probation of the other Crew Chiefs.  Truex Jr., Bowyer and Vickers were each docked 50 points.  

And everyone is blaming Michael Waltrip.  Ty Norris has publicly said HE made a split second decision (perhaps a series of them) and there has been no evidence that I've seen or heard that Michael was involved in those decisions.  In fact, Vickers was in the dark about his pit stop and Truex Jr. has said that he had no knowledge of the actions of his teammates, only that he was driving the race of his life.  

I understand that Michael is the team owner, but why are people hating on him?  Is it because they don't like his on-air persona?  Is it because they really don't believe that Ty Norris acted alone?  Or is it just because they don't like Michael Waltrip, or perhaps, his brother, Darrell?

I have been a Michael Waltrip and a DW fan for years.  Although they can be annoying on air, I find their commentary insightful.  My opinion.

Now it seems NASCAR is also investigating the communications between the 38 team of David Gilliland of Front Row Motorsports and the 20 of Joey Logano, a Penske team member.  It seems David let Joey pass him on the track, thereby "manipulating" the outcome of the race.

Really?? And somehow everyone wants us to believe this is the first time this has ever happened?



How ridiculous.  Team orders have been around for decades.  I don't care how many ways anyone tries to deny it, the fact is, they exist.  Perhaps the method of communicating them has changed, perhaps the decisions on how to "help" a teammate are made long before the race even starts.  But we all know they exist, so why the big surprise and all the outrage now?  Teammates always pull over to let each other lead a lap, if the situation allows.  They pit together.  They even use each other's pit crews if the need is there.  So why are we all up in arms about Brian Vickers pitting or Clint Bowyer spinning?

Now comes word that NAPA is reviewing the sponsorship obligations with MWR.  That is offensive to me.  NAPA wants Martin Truex Jr. in the Chase, the team does what they can to get him there, and does so, using methods that have been around for decades, yet suddenly NAPA thinks that is wrong.  Sorry, to me that is just a chicken***t attitude.

The Chase starts up this weekend at Chicagoland Speedway and at this point in time, it still is unclear whether Jeff Gordon will be awarded a place in the Chase.  It is a possibility, based on the communications.  The actions of MWR, Front Row Motorsports and Penske resulted in Jeff missing the Chase by on a few points.  On one hand, I want to say "It is what it is", after all, Hendrick Motorsports wasn't one of the cheating teams this time.  On the other hand, if NASCAR is going to penalize all these teams for doing what they have always done, why not benefit Jeff?  It sure would make my son happy.

I don't have a clue who is going to come out of Chicagoland with the Checkers, but I'll be glad when we can just get back to racing.
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9/16/13   |   Debi_L   |   11862 respect

Breaking News this morning:

Team Penske has signed Juan Pablo Montoya to drive in the IZOD IndyCar Series for 2014.  He will drive the No. 2 car alongside Will Power and Helio Castroneves.

9/16/13   |   Debi_L   |   11862 respect

Ten years ago I'd have cried if I'd had to miss seeing a race.  I'd have been glued to the TV, computer on my lap, surround sound booming.  I still love tto do that, butt it isn't the heartbreaker it once was to miss a race a time or two.  Today I worked a tournament and had a blast.  We didn't turn the race on because there were customers wanting to see something else on the TV.  I checked my phone from time to time, and followed along on the live feed once I returned from work, but I wasn't devastated by missing the race. 

The powers that be in NASCAR have done that to me.

9/16/13   |   JenX63   |   32761 respect

Debi_L wrote:
I think it is time for a complete overhaul of the hierarchy

It is sad, and I know that you know exactly what I am talking about. I will always love racing, but Nascar is moving farther and farther away from that one fact.

9/16/13   |   Debi_L   |   11862 respect

JenX63 wrote:
They saw their chance and now stupidity rules. It really is time for Helton to go.

I think it is time for a complete overhaul of the hierarchy

9/16/13   |   JenX63   |   32761 respect

Debi_L wrote:
Sigh. 

NASCAR is treating the teams, all of them, like kindergarteners.  I'm sorry, but all these effing rules and conditions are just making me sick and tired of the whole thing.

They saw their chance and now stupidity rules. It really is time for Helton to go.

9/15/13   |   Debi_L   |   11862 respect

Sigh. 

NASCAR is treating the teams, all of them, like kindergarteners.  I'm sorry, but all these effing rules and conditions are just making me sick and tired of the whole thing.

9/14/13   |   Canadianhick   |   2149 respect

(Edited by Canadianhick)

NASCAR held a mandatory closed door meeting for all drivers, crew chiefs and owners to discuss the rules and ethics of racing this morning. There is new rules in place which are:
Any competitor who artificially alters finish of event or encourages others to do so is now subject to NASCAR penalty.
NASCAR outlaws the following: Offering positions for benefit, telling driver to give up position, intentional caution, intentional wreck.
 Digital radios BANNED. Only analog radios. Also, only one spotter on stand per team now.
There will be a camera on the spotter stand that officials can watch the actions of the spotters.
France wants: "a driver and a team to give 100 percent effort -- their best effort -- to complete a race and race as hard as they can".
Pemberton also says NASCAR is going to change some of the restart procedures...will announce in drivers meeting tomorrow.
EDIT: Clarification: Digital radios WILL be allowed for teams, just not on spotters' stand.
And Martin Truex Jr. was fastest in first practice this morning and Jeff Gordon was second. LOL.



 

9/14/13   |   JenX63   |   32761 respect

Debi_L wrote:
So it seems everyone is done hating on Michael for a little while, while they hate on Jeff Gordon.

My deal is this. 

Martin Truex Jr was a pawn.  He did his part and raced and no one has any proof that HE did anything wrong.  Brian Vickers did as he was told, but had no idea what was going on.  Clint Bowyer spun, yet still claims it wasn't intentional.  Now I like Clint, but he is the only DRIVER from MWR who should be punished.  Ty Norris should be suspended.  Neither Truex nor Vickers should have been docked points, IMO.

Jeff Gordon is another pawn.  He was running his own race and due to the actions of others, he got knocked out of the Chase.  Does he deserve to be added to the Chase?  

Honestly, I'm a lot confuzzled right now.  

This is the problem with the new chase format in my opinion. If the old system was in place it wouldn't look like favoritism was being shown. Should everyone on a team be punished for 1(?) persons mistake? Nascar saw an opportunity to throw its weight around and jumped on it. 

9/14/13   |   Debi_L   |   11862 respect

So it seems everyone is done hating on Michael for a little while, while they hate on Jeff Gordon.

My deal is this. 

Martin Truex Jr was a pawn.  He did his part and raced and no one has any proof that HE did anything wrong.  Brian Vickers did as he was told, but had no idea what was going on.  Clint Bowyer spun, yet still claims it wasn't intentional.  Now I like Clint, but he is the only DRIVER from MWR who should be punished.  Ty Norris should be suspended.  Neither Truex nor Vickers should have been docked points, IMO.

Jeff Gordon is another pawn.  He was running his own race and due to the actions of others, he got knocked out of the Chase.  Does he deserve to be added to the Chase?  

Honestly, I'm a lot confuzzled right now.  

9/13/13   |   orangemen90   |   5785 respect

appears that damn if you do.. damn if you don't applies to Nascar folks....

9/13/13   |   Canadianhick   |   2149 respect

(Edited by Canadianhick)

Jeff Gordon has been added to the Chase as the 13th driver. Brian France said Gordon had unfair advantage, says he's going to protect the integrity of the sport going forward and make sure it's never questioned (oh the irony), and more then anything its the right thing to do.  Front Row Motorsports and Penske Racing on probation until December 31 as well.

Its the stupidest thing NASCAR has ever done IMO. Why not just add 56 and make it 14 cars? Truex has to be pissed at this as well and same with everyone at MRW. Was there proof Truex was is on the whole MWR manipulation deal? The whole thing wrecks and makes NASCAR like something called WWE.. I went there and that's not a good thing.

 

9/13/13   |   JenX63   |   32761 respect

I don't hate Michael. he is one of my favorite people. I think, it is, this is not someting I would expect him, his, team or anyone that works for him to do. This is something, when it happens, I think of Hendricks, Childress, one of them, not a Waltrip. The letting a teammate pass has been around forever and has never been penalized from what i know, so that call is bulls*** in my book.
I will say this, if you know your communications can be reviewed, why put yourself in the position to get caught. Nascar scrutinizes everything, not just the cars. I am sure it will blow over soon. This season has been crazy to say the least. I'm waiting to see what happens next!