In a week where the news just keeps getting crazier and crazier, NASCAR announced another portion of wild news Friday afternoon at Chicagoland Speedway. It has to do with the Chase again as there Monday Night announcement did. As a follow-up to the radio communication on David Gilliland’s channel Saturday Night at Richmond, NASCAR announced that they don’t believe a bargain occurred between Front Row Racing and Penske Racing that insured Joey Logano’s Chase spot.
That didn’t necessarily mean that they didn’t penalize the teams, however. The penalties weren’t as big as the ones to MWR, but NASCAR did put both Front Row and Penske on probation until the remainder of the season. That was the first bit of news to come out of the quickly established news conference, but it certainly wasn’t the biggest.
Along with that penalty came another never-before-seen Chase rule-adjustment. This year’s field will have 13 drivers going after the Sprint Cup and the newest Chase contender is Jeff Gordon. Gordon seemed to be the driver who lost the most based off of the manipulating MWR/Penske/Front Row did and NASCAR compensated him for that.
“Too many things altered the event and gave an unfair advantage to Jeff and his team” Brian France said regarding adding Gordon to the Chase.
With Gordon being added, all four Hendrick Motorsports cars will compete for the championship. “We’re extremely proud to have all four cars in the Chase for the second consecutive season” team-owner Rick Hendrick commented. “I applaud NASCAR for taking the time for a full review” Hendrick also said.
A week of unprecedented events has led to another car being added to the Chase. We knew Richmond would be wild, but didn’t imagine it being this wild and having the ripple-effects that it did. Bending the rules questioned the integrity of the sport through these events, but NASCAR isn’t worried regarding that juncture. They will be calling a private driver-owner meeting to address the ethics of the sport tomorrow afternoon as well. An unexpected start to the Chase is certainly underway.
By Jason Schultz