Following the penalty levied against Michael Waltrip Racing and accusations that Penske Racing and Front Row Motorsports cut a deal to let Joey Logano pass David Gilliland, Hendrick Motorsports drivers Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon have both spoken out.
Johnson called for changes in the way NASCAR officiates races. He said:
In my opinion, if there is a question they don’t know, they need to stop the race immediately. Red flag, pits are closed, figure it out and make the best judgment they can. Because trying to go back on Monday or Tuesday to fix the situation is just too much.
Johnson did express that he understands that stopping the race would be difficult, but he called it the “lesser of [two] evils.
Gordon, who missed the Chase by one point, said he was angry and disappointed in the outcome of the race.
When I found out later how they manipulated it, that was anger on a whole ‘nother level. It’s hard to describe and it’s disappointing. You realize people all want to do things for their teammates to help them, but you also know there are certain lines that have to be drawn with that.
Gordon admitted that he could’ve wrecked people to improve his finishing position. But, he said that goes against the cost of conduct. He said:
There are certain morals that are still involved with what you’re comfortable with doing and not comfortable with doing. And it has an effect on far more people than we could ever understand. That’s what I’ve really learned through this situation: It’s way beyond me and you, it’s way beyond the sport, it’s beyond the fans. It reaches out much further than that. And that’s what is so important for NASCAR to work on maintaining and also us as competitors, we have a responsibility there as well.