Edwards’ Bump Draws Ire Of Peers
By Jim Pedley | Managing Editor
Indianapolis – Carl Edwards may have lost the battle for the hearts and minds of his peers for his part in late-race shenanigans at Gateway International Raceway last weekend.
In fact, some drivers had some very harsh words for Edwards, who instigated a last-lap wreck with Brad Keselowski at Gateway on Saturday night.
Stewart-Haas Racing driver Ryan Newman said during an interview at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, site of Sunday’s Brickyard 400, that what Edwards did when he deliberately wrecked Keselowski was close to being attempted manslaughter.
Both Edwards and Keselowski used their bumpers to move the other aside on the final lap of the Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers.
But it was the bump which Edwards administered on the front stretch at Gateway as they headed for the finish line that was the one other drivers were talking most about on Friday.
After that bump, Keselowski’s car hit the outside wall and was then bashed by two other cars as it sat at the bottom of the track.
Newman was asked if he thought that what went on at Gateway was just part of a “have at it boys” aggressiveness which NASCAR officials said they would accept this season.
“Have at it boys is not that,” he said. “Have at it boys means even if we crash each other or get into an accident or lose respect for one another, you go talk about it. That’s the ‘Have at it Boys’. You go behind a trailer and you talk about it. We can get in each other’s faces. That’s ‘Have at it Boys’.
“Going out there and purposely crashing somebody; turning right or turning left just to crash ’em on purpose, whether you’re winning the race or not, is not at all ‘Have at it Boys’. Some people have thought of manslaughter or attempted manslaughter, but that’s closer to what it is. That’s not ‘Have at it Boys’
“I’m all for ‘Have at it Boys’. Let us race. But that’s not racing. We should paint up a No. 99 or No. 88 Chevy Impala for Carl to go race demolition derbies with, it that’s the case. We’re racing; we’re not demolition derbies.”
Both Edwards and Keselowski drew penalties from NASCAR for their actions at Gateway.
Edwards was put on probation, stripped of 60 championship points and docked $25,000. Keselowski was put on probation.
Driver Jeff Burton said he was surprised that Keselowski drew any penalty at all.
“I think they didn’t penalize him (Edwards) enough,” Burton said. “I don’t understand why Keselowski got penalized at all. I’m still confused. And I haven’t read or heard or talked to NASCAR. I don’t know why after that incident that Brad Keselowski should be put on probation.”
Newman was asked how the Keselowski/Edwards feud should be settled.
“Brad hasn’t decked Carl yet,” Newman said. “To me, that’s all it is. Brad just needs to go up there and lay one across his lip and everything will be fine.”
– Jim Pedley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org Comments