Published on October 13th, 2014 | by Michael J Smith


Stewart Should Know Better

This morning, Good Morning America aired a report about the on-track incident that occurred after the Bank of America 500 between Brad Keselowski, Matt Kenseth, Denny Hamlin, and Tony Stewart.

During the cool-down lap, Denny Hamlin “brake-checked” (slammed on his brakes in front of) Keselowski. Keslowski drove around him.

As they returned to pit road, Keselowski made contact with Matt Kenseth’s No. 20 Toyota. The two made contact during the race that damaged the right-rear of Keselowski’s car and sent Kenseth into the wall. Both were able to continue on and finish the race.

When they made contact, Keselowski’s car hit Stewart. Stewart put his car in reverse and slammed into the front of Keselowski’s car, damaging the nose.

GMA’s report spent a good amount of time pointing out that Stewart was involved in a fatal accident at Canandaigua Motorsports Park that claimed the life of Kevin Ward Jr. They also used USA TODAY sports columnist Christine Brennan as a source. Brennan said:

With everything the sport has been through and everything Tony Stewart has been through, in the wake of that fatal accident, to have this kind of nonsense going on; it’s really unconscionable.

For the record, Brennan is not someone who covers NASCAR, nor was she at the race. So, for her to weigh in doesn’t make much sense or give credibility to the story. But that’s not really the issue.

Going forward, non-NASCAR media is always going to look for issues involving Tony Stewart and tie them to the fatal sprint car accident that night. It’s unfortunate that the narrative is going always go that way. But the fact remains that it always will.

And while I completely understand why Stewart reacted the way he did, and I don’t think it is a big deal, I have to admit I was a little surprised by the reaction, given what did happen and the fact that the spotlight is on him.

Yes, GMA’s report was sensational and irresponsible. But, we (and Stewart) should know that this sort of story is coming any time he is involved in an incident.  So, the safest and smartest thing to do is to stay out of it. Hopefully, Stewart will realize that going forward.

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About the Author

Michael J. Smith is a NASCAR enthusiast and blogger. In addition to founding this website, Michael is a journalist with over a decade of experience writing for prestigious media organizations.

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