First off, I applaud NASCAR for taking the stance that they did for Joey Logano and his team on Saturday. There’s absolutely no reason at all to have your car fail inspection four times. In fact, the embarrassment was on them on Friday when they weren’t even able to make a qualifying attempt as they couldn’t get his No. 22 Ford through inspection.
Shame on you Todd Gordon for having yet another illegal car. Don’t say you were barely off or blame NASCAR’s lasers. 38 other cars all got through. You didn’t and you failed your team, your fans and NASCAR.
But, shame on NASCAR for the way the penalty was handled. Like I said, the stance was right, they didn’t deserve to practice. Making them sit out the entire 50 minute final practice session was in my opinion a great penalty for how inept this team was prior to qualifying. But, making them sit on pit road for 50 minutes in my mind was really too wacky.
Because NASCAR was under “hot” conditions, that meant Logano had to be in full firesuit, helmet and all. So, you have a driver sitting in his car at the end of pit road for 50 minutes but he couldn’t participate. It was comical.
Instead of making their point, NASCAR is the one getting harsh feedback. When Logano and his team were in the wrong, the deserved the punishment that they were handed. But, the way it was handled in turn made NASCAR look bad instead of Logano.
Shame on NASCAR for that.
Logano’s wife came down and took selfies with him while he was on pit road. He couldn’t go anywhere or do anything. He couldn’t even have his cell phone in his car. Basically, Logano was put in timeout. He had to sit on the end of pit road with his basically nose in the corner, full firesuit, helmet and all, no cell phone in front of the fans and national TV.
That’s a bad look.
I get that it’s no different than a penalty box in hockey, but in hockey, if your penalty is longer than time left in the period, you’re sent to the locker room. Logano, should have been kept in the “locker room” or garage area and not made a joke of like what happened.
To me, penalize him the entire session. That’s fine. In fact, impound his car. Once it passed inspection for the opening practice on Saturday morning, tech it one more time to ensure it’s legal. If it is, park it and impound it. His and his crews days are done. They can’t touch that car the rest of the weekend other than go through tech on Sunday before the race then take it to the grid for the race itself.
Then, send Todd Gordon and the car chief home.
Point will be taken and NASCAR wouldn’t be the one one looking like they were in the wrong.