Is champion crew chief Darian Grubb out of a job?
When asked about his rumored job status, that rumor that he was fired, Grubb was very honest in his answer.
“It is (baffling) to me, honestly. I'm not sure what's going to happen. But I was told early in the Chase before Charlotte that next year I was not going to be here. We just kept fighting and doing everything we had to do every week. It did not change anything, what the outcome was going to be. We fought as if we were going to fight to win this championship, and we did it, and now we'll just see in this coming week how things change.”
“As far as time line, I'll let you know later. We are just going to plan to celebrate, talk, see what happens from there.”
Well, let me say for the record that firing Grubb (rumor is they want Steve Addington instead) would be very stupid, as he obviously did a good job this year. I have a feeling they might change their mind about the firing, and if they don't he will easily find work elsewhere.
Facts about Tony’s win
-- Stewart, who previously won titles in 2002 and 2005, becomes the eighth driver in series history to win three championships. Chevrolet now has won 28 driver’s championships, including each of the last seven. Stewart started the streak in 2005, and Jimmie Johnson won an unprecedented five in a row from 2006-2010.
-- Sunday’s victory was the 44th NSCS win for Stewart. He led four times for a total of 65 of the 267-lap race that was delayed by rain three times. Fighting back from adversity that sent him to the back of the field twice as a result of repairs made on pit road by the Darian Grubb-led crew, Stewart passed 118 cars on the way to Victory Lane and the Championship.
Other points finishers
-- Jeff Gordon drove the No. 24 to a fifth place finish Sunday. The run moved Gordon up to eighth in the final standings. He had three wins during the year.
-- Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet, finished 8th Sunday to finish third in points with four victories during the season.
-- Five-time champion Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet, finished sixth in points after a lengthy stay on pit road and a spin on-track put him six laps down to the leaders relegating him to the 32nd finishing position.
-- With his 11th place finish tonight, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., No. 88 National Guard/AMP Energy Chevrolet, finished seventh in the final standings.
-- Ryan Newman, No. 39 US Army Chevrolet, was the 12th place finisher in the season finale and stands 10th in the final standings to give Team Chevy six of the top-10 drivers in the final top-10 standings.
Quotes on Tony’s win
“What an incredible championship run Tony put on this year,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President of performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “Winning a record five of the 10 Chase races and overcoming a deficit in the final race is the very definition of a champion. But, he had been there before and he handled that pressure like the champion that he is.”
Team co-owner GENE HAAS
“It's an awesome day. It's really hard to get to this point and kind of leaves you speechless.”
“So many teams fail. People spend huge amounts of money to try to get to this point. And we just kept plugging away. I think we weren't doing that well as you pointed out. We had two cars. It’s tough when you're in that bottom 35 range. So you just make changes. And you know, thanks to Chevrolet, and Tony was ready to go beyond being a driver, and so that's how it was all born.”
DARIAN GRUBB, Stewart’s crew chief
“It was just fun, honestly. We had our ups and downs with Dover and Kansas and some of the others. But the team rallying around when we had bad days and never giving up, and then Tony never giving up either. And just what he's done arriving a race car has been just extremely impressive to me. He's been the one to go three and four wide and everyone else is just scared and lifts. I think he went out and earned this championship.”
“I would have lost every bet in the world if people would have said, hey, when you got in the Chase, that we were going to win a race or we were going to win five races and win this thing; I would have bet against us. And I learned a big lesson with our organization and, you know, how strong a program we have and people wise. I mean, everybody has good cars and good equipment, but you know, I'm sure Darian's mentioned it, it's the people you have that make the difference.”
“Man, I feel like I passed half the State of Florida (Laughter). 118 cars is a lot of cars to pass in one race. I don't care what series you're in or where you're at. To do it under the circumstances and the pressure that we had today, I'm very, very proud of that, and man, I've been racing 31 years, I can't even remember some of the races I've won. But I would have to say that under the circumstances, I've got to believe that this is definitely one of the greatest races of my life.”
“It goes back to nobody has ever quit on this team and you know, like I said, I think the season has been character building and when something like that's happened it's easy to feel like you're backing yourself in a corner but the way our day was and to battle back from the back twice in those first hundred laps, I thought gave us that confidence that it wasn't the end of the world and that we could recover from it.
(deflecting question on Grubb’s status for 2012)
“I know what his status is for the rest of the night, and I'm going to get him drunk. (Laughter).
Tomorrow if we can just pick our heads up off the floor without throwing up, I'm going to be extremely happy, but I'll worry about that tomorrow.”
“There's a lot of things in the off season and decisions that have to be made. Obviously we wanted to get through this championship battle first, and we'll sit down as a group, obviously, this week and figure out the direction of our program. But, you know, the good thing right now is that we are sitting up here right now as champions and I don't think any of us are really too concerned other than having fun tonight and enjoying the accomplishment we have had over the last ten weeks."
Become a fan of the Facebook page NASCARBeyond
Follow me on Twitter: