By admin | May 3, 2011
By Richard Allen
Lately, there have been a number of well documented cases of drivers exposing the mistakes made by other members of their teams. Kurt Busch, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick have all been quite well known for pointing out poor performances on pit road, ill handling cars or sour engines. And now, even seemingly mild mannered Martin Truex has gotten into the act by â€˜firingâ€™ his pit crew last weekend in Richmond.
Unfortunately for the hapless crew members, they are often put in the position of not only having those humiliating dress downs made public by either television or on sites such as this, but also, they have little recourse. Crew members canâ€™t as easily point out that the driver missed a shift on a restart that gave away positions that were just earned with a good pit stop or when he overdrives the car and wears the tires out well before the pit cycle is complete.
A few of crew chiefs such as Chad Knaus and Greg Zipadeli have earned enough clout that will allow them to call a driver out when he costs the rest of the team, but for the most part, the crew is played as the always-to-blame screw-ups while the drivers are held to lower standards.
Truth is, there are probably more good crew members than drivers in the NASCAR garage area. Without mentioning names one way or the other(that may be a blog for another day) there are more drivers in Sprint Cup racing that I wouldnâ€™t hire than drivers I would hire if I had the money to own a team. But from the driverâ€˜s perspective, they do not seem to believe that is the case.
Itâ€™s a competitive business and emotions run high. But at some point there has to be some semblance of teamwork in place. Unfortunately for the crews, many driversâ€™ beliefs on teamwork are something like, â€œIf I donâ€™t win itâ€™s your fault.â€
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