Sunday, February 19, 2006

It Does Pay to Cheat

NASCAR took a huge step backwards on Sunday when Jimmy Johnson and his Hendrick Motorsports car won the Daytona 500. Johnson’s car was modified illegally during qualifying for the Nextel Cup’s Super Bowl of races, but rather than kick Johnson and his car out of the race, NASCAR sanctioned the team by disallowing crew chief Chad Knaus from participating in the event.

In a sport that has grown wildly in popularity in the United States, big money is still the name of the game. In this case, NASCAR wouldn’t dare take any appropriate action against a team that is sponsored by Lowe’s, the national home improvement chain.

So heaven knows what Johnson’s team did to stretch the rules during the race. The fact of the matter is, Johnson’s team cheated and got caught. But rather than take action that had any teeth, Mike Helton and the money grubbers at NASCAR rolled over.

Helton even had the gall to say that NASCAR took this kind of behavior very seriously and that an appropriate punishment would be handed down. Mikey should shut up and get back to his banjo and ‘shine.

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