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Sorry, Jeff Gordon, you’re still screwed

I’m sure everyone’s heard the saying that “Life’s not fair,” or at least some variation of it. That’s probably how four-time NASCAR champion Jeff Gordon’s feeling about now. Actually, he’s probably felt that way since the conclusion of Saturday night’s Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway, but the sentiment may be even stronger since NASCAR came down hard on Michael Waltrip Racing Monday night, replacing MWR driver Martin Truex Jr. in the 12-driver Chase for the Sprint Cup lineup with Ryan Newman of Stewart-Haas Racing.

After studying video, audo, etc., from Saturday night’s race at Richmond, NASCAR came to the conclusion that MWR wrongfully manipulated the results of the race to get Truex into the Chase, or NASCAR’s postseason to determine its yearly champion.

Michael Waltrip Racing driver Clint Bowyer spun, seemingly on purpose, late in the race, and Brian Vickers, another MWR driver, slowed on the track and then headed down pit road under green-flag conditions for no other reason that to help Penske Racing driver Joey Logano gain a position on the race track to help Logano remain in the top-10 in points. Keeping Logano in the top-10 meant the second and final wildcard entry into the Chase would go to Truex.

Truex and Ryan Newman wound up tied in points and race wins after Richmond, but a tie breaker put Truex into the Chase ahead of Newman. A points penalty from NASCAR on Monday evening, though, put Truex behind Newman, bumping Newman up into the Chase.

So what does all of this have to do with Jeff Gordon? It’s pretty simple. Logano ended the race in the top-10 in points, but just one point ahead of Gordon in 11th. If Logano had finished one position lower (minus the Vickers snafu), the two drivers would have been tied for 10th. Under that scenario, Logano would still get the spot by tie-breaker (wins — Logano’s 1 to Gordon’s 0), but then add in that Bowyer spin and Logano could have been one more position back in the running order. That additonal spot would have put Gordon one point inside the top-10 and Logano one point out. That would have put Logano in a wild card spot, with Truex completely out. Also, Gordon would be in.

Long story short, Newman may have been temporarily screwed by MWR, but that injustice was remedied by NASCAR a couple days later. Gordon’s possible screw-over, though, looks like it’s going to be more permanent. NASCAR’s penalties to Michael Waltrip Racing didn’t do a thing for him. Guess it really is true; life really isn’t fair, especially for Gordon in this case.

Let us know what you think. Follow Auto Racing Daily on Twitter @AutoRacingDaily or like Auto Racing Daily on Facebook. Amanda’s also on Twitter @NASCARexaminer and has a fan/like page on Facebook: NASCAR Examiner.

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Posted by on September 10, 2013. Filed under Blog by Amanda Vincent,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

3 Responses to Sorry, Jeff Gordon, you’re still screwed

  1. Pingback: Upcoming chat: Clint Bowyer – ESPN

  2. amazed

    September 10, 2013 at 11:58 pm

    I do not feel J. Gordon was screwed out of anything. He had 25 races before this to put himself in a position not to worry about stuff like this and his season was medicore at best. Last year he got in by a rain soaked shortened race. He got his Hail Mary last year. The wording of alot of articles (I think it is wrong and dangerous) has painted Logano as the villian, the cause of Jeff’s heartache not making into “The Chase”. Irresponsible and baiting. The clueless and fanatics are buying it. Jeff certainly isn’t running to any one’s defense, the victim card is working out swell for him so far. Who knows they just might make it like a little kids soccer game and everybody gets a trophy…Jeff gets Chase seat 13. Really the whole thing is a mess from Nascar down to the nasty fans. The Chase has wrought this mess on so many levels. Nascar needs to let them all race till Homestead. Logano’s stats says he deserves to be in The Chase.

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