Sunday, September 11, 2011

View From The Flagstand: Harvick Rolls at Richmond

The Sprint Cup regular season closed Saturday night on Richmond's three-quarter mile oval. The beating, banging, and paybacks would have made the old half-mile, Fairgrounds Raceway proud of the newer version now used in the Commonwealth's capital city.


Kevin Harvick has been struggling for months. Saturday night he served notice that he will be a player in the Chase again this year as he led over half of the 400 laps. His ride was fast, and hard to pass.


David Ragan needed to win to get in the Chase. He came up short, but his 4th place finish made him the only non-Chaser among the top nine places. Mark Martin in 10th, and AJ Allmendinger in 11th were the other two highest finishing non-Chase participants.


Richmond International Raceway tied their record for most cautions with 15. About half of those could have been avoided with a little give and take, or even common courtesy, among the drivers. There were plenty of paybacks, dive bombs, and bump and runs. However, the hard nosed racing made this race one of the best this season. Almost comparable to a road course, eh Dwindy?


Prior to Friday's Nationwide race on their network, ESPN talking heads, Brad Daughtery, Dale Jarrett, and Marty Reid slandered driver Justin Algaier. They accused him of rough driving, and wrecking his teammate, Reed Sorenson, the week before. WTF? These same guys develop lockjaw every week as (ESPN co-worker) Rusty Wallace's son, Steven, commits one egregious act after the other!


Harvick was a hero on Saturday, but definitely a zero on Friday. He intentionally wrecked at least two Nationwide series' regulars, and was team blocking for Elliott Sadler, his full time NW driver. The blocking to assist Sadler in points is sorry enough, but did he also wreck some of Sadler's competition for the points?


  1. Hey Gene!

    What happened to "The Closer"? Maybe Kevin found out its dangerous back in the pack. Good run for him but I caught some dissension from a late charging Jeff Gordon who in the heat of things questioned how appropriate it was for Paul Menard to spin out with about 20 laps to go and Gordon with a somewhat comfortable lead. The resulting caution reset the field on fresh tires and the rest, as they say, is history! I taped the race and wouldn't ya know it, they didn't show a single replay of what happened to Menard! The in-race clive overage just showd Menard's car suddenly out on the infield grass and the 15th caution of the night came out... Team orders? It was enough to get a rise out of Gordon anyway... Would the old hair dyer order such a thing to get his driver in victory lane??? I just keep thinkin' of Al Davis' line, "Just win baby!"

    I think like you that the 26th race of the Cup season was about the best, most exciting race of the 2011 season and I'm only sorry that we'll stilol be saying that at the end of the next 10 races as well... What can be done to bottle this stuff? We need it spread around! It's my contention my road races would do just that!

    Thanks Gene!

  2. Dwindy... I don't know about RCR team orders. Too many ears on the team radios at the track. But, it is interesting that they never showed a replay of Menard.

    The action in the race came as a big surprise to me. I thought everyone would be in cruise mode, looking towards the Chase.

  3. That was a great race for the first 300 laps, the last 100 were a bit of a snoozer after the wreckfest in the beginning. Loved that it was Big Daddy making the accusations of team orders!

    And what to say, what to say about dear Kurt. He's got fire in the belly! Perfect race for he and JJ to have some payback fun with no consequences...well except for poor poor little Jenna getting her paper ripped!

    I say Kurt and JJ autograph and give it to her charity! LOL

  4. Kristen... Yes, the race cooled down somewhat over the last 100 laps, but we still got the usual late race, finishing order altering, caution.

    Every newspaper without its own NASCAR beat writer has to depend on Jenna Fryer's version of events in the racing world, as she is the AP mouthpiece. Her recent piece on Danica may well have been a press release from Danica's publicist.

  5. Go, David! Thing about no TV/Internet is listening to the terrific calls by MRN Radio announcers!

    Great observations as usual, Han!