Stewart shows he's a sore loser by throwing his team under the bus
One of those things is be a bad loser and insult your teammates after a tough loss. On the contrary, you work together to fix whatever cost you the win and hopefully come out on top next time.
Apparently Tony Stewart didn’t get that memo.
After a tough battle with Jimmie Johnson, Stewart had to settle for second place at Richmond this weekend, and he was just inches away from making the pass to take his first win of the season.
The reason he had to try to make the pass was that Johnson passed him in the pits by just a hair, and apparently Stewart wasn’t very happy with his crew about it, and showed a very bad side of his character by attacking them harshly after the race. Here’s his exchange with crew chief Greg Zipadelli after the race ended, shortly after he threw a temper tantrum in the car.
TONY: “Good job, guys. We gave another one away today. Great job”
ZIPPY: “Great attitude there, Smoke. We stalled it a couple times on pit road and gave up a spot. Remember, we win and lose as a team. It was a great effort, OK. That’s enough of that crap.
TONY: “The difference is I got mine back”
Based on that kind of communication, I get the feeling that the sooner Tony Stewart is gone from Joe Gibbs Racing, the happier the members of the team will be. I applaud Zippy for not taking Tony’s insults and shoving it right back at him. These guys are like brothers, they’ve been working together so long, so they’ve probably already made up. But it can not have been easy to work so closely with someone as volatile as Tony for a decade. Zippy no doubt is looking forward to a more subdued relationship with Joey Logano when he jumps into the car. And you can bet Joey will have the respect not to insult his crew just because he didn’t get the win.
The worst part is that the crew made no huge, obvious screwup. Johnson just beat him off pit road. So it's not like Stewart could point out something they did terribly wrong to justify his anger.
I defend Tony a lot, and respect his absolute desire to win every time he gets behind the wheel. But these kind of outbursts are immature and insulting to the hard work that team puts in each week. Apparently, this kind of attitude is contagious at the Gibbs organization, as Denny Hamlin threw his team under the bus a few weeks ago after a bad finish, saying they didn’t “deserve” to be in the Chase.
This kind of trashing of teammates is unwelcome in any sport, and NASCAR is no exception. I understand Tony was frustrated, but maybe he needs to go back to those anger management classes that helped him calm down a few years ago. He’s still got a whole Chase to get through, and that team needs to be working together if they hope to contend for anything.
Since he’ll be a part owner next year, Tony won’t have anyone to get mad at except himself if his equipment is bad or his team screws up. Maybe he can scream into a mirror when that happens.
Watch NASCAR on the go
I recently had the opportunity to test out a Verizon cell phone equipped with VCAST, which allows you to watch live television on your phone. This is of particular interest to NASCAR fans, who often can’t be at home in front of the tube when the race is on.
The ESPN networks are among the channels you are able to view on VCAST, so this time of year all the races, and most qualifying and practice sessions, can be seen on your phone, should you happen to be on the run. The phone I used had a screen large enough to clearly see what was going on. I only had signal issues a couple times, during extreme weather. The rest of the time, pulling out the antenna will clear up any issues.
As a side note, there's also some other pretty cool NASCAR-related material available for purchase, including a downloadable NASCAR video game that's pretty fun to play.
If you are a NASCAR addict like myself and want to be able to see what‘s going on in NASCAR at all times, wherever you are, it’s definitely something to look into.