Monday, November 2, 2015

When Enough is Just Enough
Logano/Kenseth #nascar

When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville


If you know NASCAR, you have heard about the most recent Logano / Kenseth fracas. Let me prefix this article by saying I am truly bias in favor of Kenseth. Logano raced in the K&N Pro Series when my son participated also. I was not impressed with the then youngster Logano’s antics, neither on nor off the track.

I personally witnessed bad decision making on Logano’s part without a thought about anyone other than Joey. He never uttered an apology nor show concern for his track victims’ well-being. However, I witnessed the seventeen-year-old boy Joey. Much could have changed in the now twenty-five-year-old race car driver.

On the other hand, I was honored to hang with Kenseth at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway Petty Experience a few years back. There I discovered a quiet, humble and caring individual who seem genuinely interested in the other person.


When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville

Just in case you were not aware; on lap 454 of a scheduled 500-lap short track event in Martinsville, Joey Logano was in the lead and apparently cruising to his fourth consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup win. Kenseth whose car was damage earlier in the race by Logano’s teammate Brad Keselowski, drilled Logano in the left rear-quarter panel, sending both drivers violently out of the race.

Kenseth explained:


"Some days you get put in spots you don’t want to be in, for sure,” said Kenseth, “I had two chances to win in the last three weeks and got wrecked out of both of them going for the lead. One from him (Logano) and one from Brad. That’s disappointing. We should have never been in that spot trying to limp that car around and get the finish."

Logano commented:


“I think what happened at Kansas is a completely different deal,” said Logano, who with a 37th-place finish at Martinsville now ranks last among the eight remaining title contenders. "We were racing for the win and he blocks you a few times and then we raced hard and he blocked me the last time and we spun out. That’s what happened there. Here it was just a complete coward move, especially for a championship race car driver and race team. Just a complete coward. I don’t have anything else to say. It’s a chicken-you-know-what move to completely take out the leader when your race is over. We’ll move on.”

From the flamboyant cheers escalating out of the fans in the stands; I was of the belief that the aficionadas approved of the outcome of the Kenseth / Logano wreck. Therefore, I was shocked by my limited sampling poll regarding yesterday’s sprint cup scuffle:

60% Backing Kenseth
40% Behind Logano.

Okay, all that being said, here is NASCAR Race Mom’s opinion. (Least not forget - I am of predisposition).

I remember the 2009 NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown in Irwindale. I was there and my son was in the race, when Logano “attempted a move” that slammed the race leader into the wall and out of the race on the last lap. (Check out Logano’s explanation starting at 2:20 of the video below) – “He came out there to win and feels that he did that.”



Additionally, NASCAR Race Mom personally experienced, that a victim of Joey’s lack of driving dexterity should not expect any form of communication from the Logano camp.

“Slice Bread” has had to live up to high expectations that were placed upon him at a young age. Now after a rough career start, Joey is having his best season ever. This does not excuse his rough “win at all costs” attitude. Some drivers will refuse to simply move out of his way.

Further, Matt Kenseth was not unreasonable when he expressed his estimation that his run of ‘bad luck’ at the wheels of Logano and/or his teammate. Watching the Martinsville replay closely, you can see that Brad Keselowski didn’t just hit Matt once but twice before turning him. How much help Brad received from behind is not clear.

Therefore what is good for the goose is good for the gander right? It is more complicated than that. I heard Logano’s spotter emphatically re-inforce that Kenseth was “still down there” four times before the crash.

Could Kenseth have slowed to allow Logano to complete his pass; most certainly. Should he have? Well as a lap car, I would usually say yes.

However, as Logano’s spotter’s voice timbre frantically notified that Kenseth was ‘down there’, and Logano knew or should have known that Kenseth was not his friend. Logano – as a seasoned racer with a dominate car and over fifty laps remaining in the event – seriously, what was he thinking?

As a mother who has watched her son on the race track, intentional wrecking is never justified and/or never okay. Nevertheless, in this difficulty quandary, #IStandWithMatt. Sometimes enough is just enough.

This might just be the reality Joey Logano needs to continue on his rough road toward NASCAR greatness. While it cost Joey a NASCAR record of four consecutive wins, it did not rob him of an opportunity for a championship.

After the race, NASCAR officials summoned Kenseth, crew chief Jason Ratcliff and team owner Joe Gibbs to the NASCAR hauler for a discussion.  NASCAR Race Mom fears the ruling to come from NASCAR. As in most judgement calls, poor NASCAR will be wrong no matter how it proceeds.

When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville

Nevertheless, the one thing all NASCAR Fans can all agree upon is the exhilarating thrill of watching the #24 Jeff Gordon take the checkered. If anything can take the focus of the Martinsville race back to the correct spotlight; four-time champion Jeff Gordon’s “Green-White-Checker” dual with Jamie McMurray did that in style.



Parting thought: 

 

When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville

 

How come no one is commiserating about Danica Patrick running into the back of David Gilliland on multiple occasions during this same Sprint Cup auto race? It appears that Danica Patrick lost her patience with David Gilliland. Patrick and Gilliland also have a long history of clashes on the track, and the drivers managed to find each other multiple times along the half-mile oval. Talk about obvious and blatant . . . . is that okay NASCAR???

Photos by Getty Images

4 comments:

HOTWHEELSCOTT said...

Matt and Danica should be parked... Harvick should have been penalised also..
Nascar's inconsistency is what has caused this.....

Z Smith said...

Thanks for you astute comment. Inconsistency in enforcement of the "rules" is a contributing factor.

Ronald Iocca said...

@Nascar Race Mom...

Excellent recount and view of the events, I commend your honesty in your approach! Thank you! #IStandWithMatt also! =)

Z Smith said...

Thanks so much for the kind words Ronald - What do you think NASCAR will do?