Bill Fleischman: Sticking up for Logano, but not his dad, in feud with Harvick
ANOTHER RACE, another feud. This time it's Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick. We've all seen NASCAR drivers mad at each other. But this is the first time I can recall a driver including a rival's wife in his remarks.
ANOTHER RACE, another feud. This time it's Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick.
We've all seen NASCAR drivers mad at each other. But this is the first time I can recall a driver including a rival's wife in his remarks.
Quick review: During the closing laps of last Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Pocono Raceway, Harvick nudged Logano's Toyota, sending it spinning. Logano skillfully managed to save the car.
When the race ended, a fuming Logano parked next to Harvick on pit road and attempted to confront him. That's when Logano told a TNT reporter, "His wife wears the firesuit in the family and tells him what to do."
Logano, who turned 20 last month, had a right to be angry about the racing incident with Harvick. Both were vying for a top-five finish. It's not the first time Harvick has leaned on Logano during a race. However, Logano's crack about DeLana Harvick was inappropriate. Let's call it a youthful indiscretion.
DeLana seems amused by Logano's comment. She told nascar.com, "If I had my way with Kevin, I would like to have him take me out to a nice dinner, or maybe give me a back rub or an ankle rub. Having him wreck Joey Logano wouldn't even make my radar screen if I had almighty control over Kevin."
Give Logano credit for standing up to Harvick. Some observers believe Logano has been too respectful toward experienced Cup series drivers. His reaction to Harvick shows Logano can stand up for himself.
Regarding the Harvick-Logano racing contact, it appeared that Logano, in the outside lane, began turning down on the track with Harvick stationed on his left rear. Still, Harvick could have given Logano more room. Harvick, the series points leader, finished fourth; Logano was 13th.
Adding fuel to the rivalry is Logano's father. At Pocono, Tom Logano seemed to be encouraging his son to get in Harvick's face.
This wasn't the first time Tom was involved in a dispute involving Joey. NASCAR relieved Tom of his credential last year after he charged toward Greg Biffle after a Nationwide series race at California. Tom was upset with the way Biffle raced Joey.
Tom is looking out for his son. Since Joey is now 20 though, it's time for Tom to back off and stop acting like a Little League dad.
Oh, and let's not overlook Kasey Kahne and A.J. Allmendinger. When Kahne attempted to pass Allmendinger low on the last lap, Allmendinger blocked his teammate, sending Kahne's car onto the infield grass. Out of control, Kahne's Ford swerved across the track and nearly soared over the 39-inch-high backstretch retaining wall. Eight cars were caught up in the crash.
Afterward, Kahne indicated he would speak with Allmendinger about what happened. Best guess at Kahne's opening line: "Yo, A.J., we are teammates!"
Three Roush Fenway drivers are in the top 10 in points: Matt Kenseth is third, Carl Edwards is ninth and Greg Biffle is 10th. The fourth RF driver, David Ragan, is a distant 25th, with just one top-10 finish.
Two years ago, in just his second season with RF, Ragan almost qualified for the Chase for the Championship, finishing 13th. If Jack Roush is getting impatient with Ragan, he isn't letting on.
"David is extraordinarily skilled, he's patient, he's mature for his years  and he deserves better," Roush said on a Tuesday conference call. "As we get ourselves straightened out, I'm very hopeful that David can compete for a spot in the Chase and win a race this year."
Roush and Ragan spent some quality time together when Ragan sat in the co-pilot's seat of Roush's plane on the flight from Pocono to Charlotte Sunday night.
No. 38 team penalized
Travis Kvapil and members of his team are the latest to hear from NASCAR's justice department.
NASCAR inspectors found unapproved modification to valve-stem hardware on the No. 38 Ford team before the Pocono race, and crew chief Steven Lane was fined $100,000, suspended for the next 12 Cup races, suspended from NASCAR until Sept. 15 and placed on probation until Dec. 31.
Car chief Richard Bourgeois and tire specialist Michael Harrold received the same punishments, minus the $100K fine.
Kvapil and team owner Doug Yates have been penalized with the loss of 150 driver and owner points, respectively. Kvapil was 33rd in points before the penalty. Since the top 35 drivers get starting positions in a race, he now will be required to qualify for races on speed.
While acknowledging the infraction, team owner Bob Jenkins said the team will appeal the severity of the penalty.
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