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Blog #120

AMP Energy 500 at Talladega - 10/5/2008

This afternoon I watched the NASCAR Cup Series race on ABC.  Regan Smith crossed the finish line first, ahead of Tony Stewart, and then NASCAR declared Stewart the race winner.


Coming into the tri-oral for the last time Regan Smith, running second, had a run on the leader Tony Stewart.  Regan faked a pass on the high side and Tony drove two lanes up the track to block the pass.  Regan then dove to bottom of the track and Tony drove to the bottom as well.  At this point Regan had a bumper on Tony was had no choice but to go below the yellow line.  Tony continued to drive along the yellow line causing Regan to complete his pass of Tony completely below the line.


NASCAR determined that Regan illegally passed Tony below the yellow line. Tony was awarded the win.  NASCAR further penalized Regan for the Illegal pass and moved him to 18th place, the final car on the lead lap.


The decision to award the win to Tony Stewart was made within thirty seconds of crossing the finish line.  NASCAR could not have thought through their decision or reviewed the videotape to make a well-thought-out decision or one that was unbiased by the emotions of the race.


Regan Smith was forced below the yellow line by Tony Stewart's move. The rule preventing a drive from driving below the yellow line does have an exception when that driver is forced there by another drive.  NASCAR must have forgot about this exception.


The rulebook also has provisions to penalize drivers who force others below the yellow line.  NASCAR elected not to enforce this rule either.


None of the television commentators questioned NASCAR's decision.  Do they fear NSACAR's wrath?


Actually Regan did have a choice not to go below the yellow line.  He could have stayed above the line, hit Tony and taken him out of the race and probably half of the field as well.  Is that what NASCAR wanted?


NASCAR got it wrong!


And television missed it.


NASCAR got it wrong!


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