There are probably a lot of people really sick and tired of reading recaps of Bristol. After all, the only people who seem to be excited about Jimmie Johnson winning yet another race are Jimmie’s fans. Everyone else seems to be pretty burned out. However, the fact that you’re reading this means: (1) You’re a glutton for punishment (2) You really like Jimmie Johnson, (3) You really like Skirts and Scuffs, or (4) You really like me. Now, I’m inclined to believe it’s the last one. However, regular readers of this column will know this is not a normal recap and I refuse to focus on just one topic of discussion.
So without further adieu, here are my five questions from the weekend:
Can anyone stop Jimmie Johnson? … I figured I’d get it out of the way first! Seriously, though, the guy won 22 of the 93 races run with the rear wing, he’s won the last four championships, 3 of the first 5 races this season, and 7 of the last 14! Seriously, this guy is unstoppable. Last year Johnson didn’t get his first win of the season until Martinsville, and didn’t show up in victory lane again until almost June (May 31st)! The year before that his first win wasn’t until Phoenix, and didn’t win again until the Brickyard 400 in July. Now the previous two years he had a few wins under his belt at this point. Bottom line: He’s got a fire underneath him, and it’s going to take a heck of a lot of work from the other teams to extinguish it.
How long did it take Greg Biffle to realize his scanner was unplugged? … Apparently too long! Just ask Mark Martin… and the 11 other cars that were involved in the incident. I know it’d be hard to plug your scanner back into your helmet under green, especially at Bristol. But how long exactly was it out? When you’re at Bristol and your spotter is quiet, something is wrong. Even the leader’s spotter is constantly in his driver’s ear alerting him of lapped cars. Biffle originally thought he had run into Jeff Burton, and had to go back and forth with spotter, Joel Edmonds, for a while to figure out what happened. It took the commentators a little while to sort it all out too!
Who put a hex on Joe Gibbs Racing? … All three drivers had tire issues that sent them into the wall and onto pit road sometime during the race. Kyle Busch was the only one that was able to recover, with a 9th place finish. Denny Hamlin finished in 19th, and only two cars behind were still on the lead lap. Joey Logano finished 27th, five laps down. Joe Gibbs Racing really hasn’t shown the strength this season that they did last year.. When will they finally step it up?
Kurt Busch doesn’t hold back much does he? … “I’d rather lose to any of the 41 cars out there today than the 48 car.” Harsh, dude, harsh! But I can’t imagine the other 41 drivers out there feel the same way. Busch just said what everyone else was thinking. I’m still waiting for the drivers to form a pact that if one of them gets lapped by Jimmie Johnson, they’ll give him a little “tap” on the bumper. Am I advocating this? Heck no! But I’d love to see it happen. (Chew on that one for a bit.)
Was everyone’s eyes glued to the TV whenever Carl Edwards and Brad Keselowski were racing side by side? … It kind of reminded me of the Homestead race when Keselowski and Denny Hamlin were racing together. To refresh your memory, Hamlin had promised the week previous that he would “take care of” Keselowski. Now, granted, there was no talk of revenge for this weekend’s race, but you couldn’t help but wonder if something would happen. Nothing did, but it had everyone’s attention for the laps that they raced together.
Bonus questions: Is anyone going to miss the wing? Me neither … Can we try and make it through a weekend without rain? Please? … Are brakes going to be a big issue, not tires?