Geez, I almost hate to write this blog because I don't think it will be very popular with my best NASCAR friends.
Oh, not the part about how gleeful I am about Jimmie winning. They'll understand how I jumped and wrung my hands and begged him to take the checkered flag. Take that, New Chase....the last two races have been won by non-contenders and I hope the last two are as well! Go, Jimmie! Go, Junior!
No the part I'm talking about is the fight and who was or wasn't at fault. We have heard over and over again from announcers that this is the most intense and pressure-filled Chase there has ever been. They say that like it is a good thing. They say these guys are out there riding on the edge of their last nerve! They say they are probably not sleeping at night. They say Crew Chiefs are ordering antacid by the case. Cool, huh?
So, are we surprised when drivers will do whatever they think it takes to win, especially if they are down in the points and need that win to possibly survive? Are we surprised that they'll bolt for any hole they see that might take them to the front, even if it is a little iffy? Supposedly, that's what we want them to do.
Don't get me wrong. I'm very much rooting for Jeff to win this championship and I'm not at all a big Keselowski fan but still, I don't think Brad K did anything wrong. I don't think he did anything any of the others wouldn't have done. Do you really think Harvick wouldn't have tried to blast his way through if he'd been in that position? Brad is brash and mouthy and that makes it too easy to make him the scapegoat.
Not that I blame Jeff for being furious. He had his Chase pretty well under control and now he's barely in the top four so sure, he is royally pissed about that.
Kevin Harvick should have kept his nose out of it. It wasn't his fight to get involved in.
But here's something I'd like a long-time NASCAR fan to explain to me. Dale Earnhardt was gone before my time but I've certainly read a lot about him and the love so many NASCAR fans had for him. They reveled at his willingness to knock someone out of the way to win. Why was it good when Dale did it but awful when Brad does it? Do we like the "knock'em, sock'em" kind of drivers or not?
Why is it when Tony Stewart says he'd wreck his Mom to try to win a championship, we cheer - "yeah, Smoke, that's the old spirit!" But Brad is a jerk for doing what Tony said he'd happily do?
I don't understand it.
As for the other races, I didn't watch the Truck race because I figured Kyle would win....sure enough. I did record the Nationwide race but for some reason my recording ended with 12 laps to go. I wasn't too upset. I assumed it would be either Kyle or Joey....sure enough.
The first half of the Cup race was entertaining for Jimmie fans, maybe not so much for others. The second half was surely surely pretty entertaining for everyone with lots of cautions and the lead trading hands. Two green/white/checkers.
And then, of course, the fight with what looked like about 100 participants and actual blood on both parties...not exactly spurting from mortal wounds, but still....
If that's your kind of race...and aftermath....you can probably expect more of the same in Phoenix because Texas brought the points closer together than before so all eight have a chance. If you think they are all going to be gentlemen, you're crazy.