Monday, March 17, 2014

Competence Abounds

Jimmy Johnson, six time champion, finished 19th yesterday, 2 laps down to the leader, but we cannot fault him for that result. It was due to a decision made by his crew chief, Chad Knaus, who is usually called “God” for short.

During a caution at lap fifty when everyone else took four tires, Jimmy’s car was given only two tires, and they were not put on the right side where tires receive the most wear, but on the left side. It was a weird call, and the announcers were commenting on it but saying, “Well, I’m certainly not going to question Chad Knaus.”

I was thinking at the time, “I’m sure as hell going to question Chad Knaus. Taking two tires is stupid, and taking them on the left side is stupid squared.” Sure enough, about thirty laps after the restart Jimmy had a blowout of his right front tire. By the time he got it changed he was two laps down. Great call Chad, baby.

Jimmy finished one position and one lap behind Danica Patrick, who was 18th, and one lap down to the leader. She did manage one noteworthy feat during the race. Leaving the pits during a caution, she lost control of her car and clobbered another race car which was stationary in its pit stall. To say that was unusual would be a massive understatement.

The race was yellow flagged with two laps remaining, but no one knew why. After the cars had been parading behind the pace car for several laps the yellow flag was still unexplained, but it began raining so they threw the checkered flag, giving the win to Carlo Edwards who had been leading when the yellow came out. It was later discovered that the yellow came out because someone in the flagstand accidentally leaned against the button. Thus the title; competence abounds.

1 comment:

  1. bruce9:22 AM

    That's just too funny.. lean on the yellow button, lean on the steering wheel and run into someone, lean into tires..

    question: why more wear on the right side? I kinda thought the left (down?) side might get more wear. Or it is because the right side has more stress and/or has more distance because of the (slightly) greater circumference?

    question 2: Does Danica drive like this in parking lots?

    The Pope may be infallible, Mr. Knaus isn't anymore.