When it comes to car racing, be it the NASCAR Sprint Series, the Formula One series, the Moto GP, it has always been a matter of how far can you take the technical limitations that are set upon the car to the limit. It has always been a matter of how you can cut the corners inside the legal margins to, at the end, have the fastest car or the fastest bike out there. Let’s not forget that at the end of these 200, 300, 500 mile-long races, it all comes down to a matter of seconds and milliseconds between the winner and everybody else.
Don’t get me wrong here, I do realize this limitations set upon chief mechanics and team engineers are set to keep things fair and let the talent and driving skills of each driver be what makes the difference. Let’s not forget also that some of these limitations are also place to keep the safe being of the racers and spectators as the No. 1 priority.
So yes, if you do make changes that go too far, if you cheat (but that’s not the right word here) and break some regulations to make your car go faster, you and your team should be penalized. But I would go so far as to expect that if as a Driver and a team both Clint Bowyer and Richard Childress Racing should be penalized with such a harsh punishment, then NASCAR should have done so on Sunday, not wait for an extended review and give the punishment on a Wednesday afternoon.
Here is the thing, why did it take so long. They have penalized Clint Bowyer with 150 points. Ok, Sunday night, after he won the race, Bowyer was 2nd in the Chase for the Sprint Cup. Thursday Morining, that same guy now sits 12th over 180 points from the first place and basically without the slightest chance to win the Chase. For a single race infraction, 150 point must be up-to-date the highest penalization any NASCAR driver has received. The thing here is that, as of press time, Sprint Cup officials have yet to make an statement regarding the details of what was it that Richard Childress Racing had done wrong.
They, the evaluative commission who tested the car, have said that it was a matter of how the team mechanics and engineers had arranged the care body over the frame, giving it some sort of aerodynamic advantage. But here is the twist. If the infraction was really worth a 150-point sanction, why didn’t the guys who check the cars after the race noticed that anything was wrong?
Upon further review… That is the phrase that makes this whole thing a bit upsetting I must confess. The technicians said Ok, the race results stands, you can make it official one and a half hours after Bowyer crossed the finish line first. I must say that 150 points is still a very harsh infraction for something that the technicians and specialist that checked the winning car on Sunday to miss.
At the end it is a matter of credibility. NASCAR owes it to its fans. This sort of issues cannot be repeated, for the sake of the sport.