Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Rivalries are nothing new in NASCAR. In fact, they’ve pretty much been around since the sport began more than 60 years ago. But it seems like rivalries have moved to the forefront more this season than in the past few years, perhaps because of NASCAR’s new stance on letting drivers police themselves.
NASCAR’s move that was announced during the off-season, basically described as “boys have at it” was probably adopted to bring rivalries back to the sport to create excitement, which would, therefore, draw new and previously disenchanted fans either to or back to NASCAR. What probably wasn’t expected was the fact that these rivalries seem to be cropping up between teammates.
Sure, there was the Carl Edwards/Brad Keselowski debacle back at Atlanta, but other than that, most of the flare-ups, whether they grew into rivalries or not, have been between drivers racing out of the same shop: Jamie McMurray/Juan Pablo Montoya, Jimmie Johnson/Jeff Gordon, and most recently Kyle Busch/Denny Hamlin.
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Photo of Denny Hamlin by Amanda Vincent