We've already had one issue with the race to the chase with the Waltrip Racing debacle, and Truex effectively getting pulled from the chase, Newman getting in.
But now, there's new noise on the horizon that it's possible that Joey Logano's team had made a request of Front Row Motorsports driver David Gilliland to let Logano pass him to help him get into the Chase.
And he did, getting in front of Gilliland to secure his spot in the Chase, while Gilliland's lap times dropped by a whole second after that.
As far as what exactly is being reported, there's communications of a request to let Logano pass. When Gilliland's team inquires who is making the request, the reply is "We've got the big dog and all his cronies."
Logano doesn't think it's a big deal, but some folks do.
I received these two NASCAR statements in my inbox, that they sent to the core of press:
NASCAR is aware of reports about the #22 and #38 radio communications at Richmond International Raceway and is looking into it, but has yet to see anything in full context that requires any action.
NASCAR is continuing to gather all the facts from last Saturday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Richmond International Raceway. NASCAR will have no further comment until all the facts have been examined.
To be honest, this doesn't seem as terrible as the MWR thing, but NASCAR could prove me wrong.
And this is on the heels of NASCAR having dinged MWR rather heavily for manipulating the outcome of the Richmond race with Clint Bowyer spun himself out to bring out the caution.
Though there were other actions involved, where MWR driver Brian Vickers was asked to pit after a green flag, many are focused on Bowyer. But the other actions, with Vickers pitting, gave Logano more position, enabling him to knock Jeff Gordon out of the 2013 Chase.
All the while, Carl Edwards has skated any press pressure from his restart where he blatantly beat the leader to the green flag on the final race restart. Something that NASCAR chose to ignore enforcing. This time. (I wish they'd get consistent.)
This year, the Chase seems to be generating a lot of media with these radio communications, race outcome manipulations and what not.
At this rate, this could become the most scandalous Chase for the Cup season yet.
But my question is this: Are we just now becoming aware of it, versus previous years? In recent months, NASCAR banned drivers from talking to each other on the radio. So now teams have to talk to spotters, who talk to other spotters, who talk to their drivers.
It's these communications we're hearing, versus the driver-to-driver chatter we never heard.
Could it be that it's now being forced out in the open due to the new radio rules?
This may be nothing new. I wouldn't be surprised at all.
BUT FOR GADS SAKE people, can you not find some way of cheating without making it so damn blatant?
As it stands, it seems that depending on who you talk to, it's OK or it's not. Matt Kenseth thinks there's no problem with helping teammates, while Jeff Gordon seems pissed and Rick Hendrick said Jeff was robbed.
And of course, now that eyes are on Bowyer, rather than stepping up and accepting his fate, he's still denying it and is now pointing fingers at Jimmie Johnson about an incident earlier in the race when Johnson spun. My opinion of the man is on a pretty solid downward slide at the moment. Seriously... finger pointing when we're under the gun? (Has he NOT seen Sons of Anarchy? No one likes a snitch.)
And to be honest, because he was the central part of this race fix, maybe NASCAR should have rules in place to pull the instigator from the Chase. It would seem only right rather than let the offenders continue to participate in the Chase.
But that's just my take. I'm also in favor of pulling wins from cheaters and other such drastic measures. Again, that's just in my small world.
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