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Aric Almirola’s post-Daytona 500 take refreshing

Aric Almirola (right) with car owner Tony Stewart (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

Aric Almirola (right) with car owner Tony Stewart (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

I found Aric Almirola’s interview post-Daytona 500 on Sunday rather refreshing. Although he was disappointed he came oh-so-close but didn’t win the Daytona 500 in his first race out with Stewart-Haas Racing, he didn’t blame Austin Dillon for “stealing” the win. In the not-quite-day since the checkered flag, I’ve read and listened to opinions from both sides — some saying Dillon did what he needed to do to win the Daytona 500, but others saying Dillon’s move was dirty. Personally, I think both drivers played a role in what happened. Heck, even Almirola, who came out with the proverbial short end of the stick, seemed to think he played a part.

“He’s not driving too aggressively; he’s trying to win the Daytona 500, just like I was,” Almirola said. “I saw him come with the momentum, and I pulled up to block, and did exactly what I needed to do to try and win the Daytona 500. I wasn’t going to just let him have it. I wasn’t going to stay on the bottom and let him rail the outside, so I blocked, and he got to my bumper and pushed. I thought I was still going to be okay, and somehow, I got hooked. I’m just devastated.”

Almirola acknowledged that, put in the same situation, early in the race, he “probably wouldn’t have pulled that block.”

Why do I find the above remarks refreshing? Almirola doesn’t seem to be changing that drivers’ code some drivers like to bring up at times to suit his situation at the moment to blame someone else for his misfortune. By that, am I saying that what happened Sunday was Almirola’s fault? Not completely. Was it 100 percent Dillon’s fault? No. I think both played their parts.

Almirola’s explanation of what happened was refreshing, because, quite frankly, I was getting tired of drivers blocking one week and then complaining about being blocked the next week. I’m kind of tired of watching a driver wrecking a car that was blocking him in one race and then complain about another driver doing the same thing a month or so later. The so-called drivers’ code seems to change depending on which driver you ask and whatever is in his best interest that given week.

Apparently, that’s not the case with Almirola. And to me, that’s a refreshing change. Stay classy, Almirola, your win is coming.

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Posted by on February 19, 2018. Filed under Blog by Amanda Vincent,Featured,Monster Energy NASCAR Cup,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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