Ranking NASCAR Drivers' Top 5 Post-Race Rants from 2013
Every year, we witness the best part of a NASCAR driver's bad day, the post-race rant. It doesn't matter if it is criticism levied at the sanctioning body or a few terse words levied at another driver, the post-race rant is a veritable gold mine for media and fans alike.
We've seen our fair share of angry drivers this season, and in some cases, the drivers have given us more than one entertaining post-race rant. In some instances, those post-race rants make the headlines and grace the Internet in the most graceless way.
Here are some of the best post-race rants of 2013.
5. Stefanik Has a Few Choice Words
You can't help but feel bad for NASCAR Modified driver Mike Stefanik after he came so close to winning the 2013 UNOH Battle at the Beach at Daytona this year.
Stefanik, who was leading Steve Park on the last lap, was turned around after Park was knocked into him. The spin gave Park the lead and, ultimately the win, while an angry Stefanik finished 13th.
Anybody who knows a thing or two about NASCAR knows about the troubles that Park has faced during his NASCAR career. So it was a feel-good moment for the sport. The only one who wasn't feeling good about the turn of events was Stefanik, and he let the Speed Channel crew know. Loudly.
The Internet had a field day with Stefanik's epic rant. The popular website BuzzFeed.com called it a "delirious child-like tantrum," and Jay Leno also had fun with the interview.
4. Keselowski Accuses NASCAR of Targeting Team
Brad Keselowski isn't afraid to say whatever is on his mind. While that trait can be refreshing, in some cases, it can also bring about a fresh opportunity for Keselowski to insert his foot into his mouth.
Prior to the NRA 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, NASCAR confiscated the rear-end housings to Keselowski's No. 2 Ford, as well as those of his Penske Racing teammate Joey Logano's No. 22 Ford. Keselowski finished the race ninth, while Logano placed fifth.
Still, that wasn't enough to satisfy the 2012 Sprint Cup champion, who took NASCAR to task, claiming it was singling out his Miller Lite team.
While he has every right to say what he wants, considering he may be privy to information that the general public does not know about, this post-race rant didn't do much to help his image as a NASCAR spokesperson.
3. Newman Doesn't Like Talladega
Ryan Newman has had a love/hate relationship with Talladega Superspeedway. Well, maybe it's mostly a hate relationship that the driver of the No. 39 holds with the Alabama monster.
In 2003, a cut tire sent him headfirst into the wall in a vicious hit that put him on his side. In April of 2009, he drove under the airborne car of Carl Edwards and sent the No. 99 into the catchfence coming to the checkered flag. Later that year, he went airborne and landed on his roof before executing a series of flips which kept him upside down.
And late in the going in the 2013 Aaron's 499, Kurt Busch's No. 78 was sent into a barrel roll before landing on top of Newman's No. 39. That was the straw that broke the camel's back, and Newman launched into a post-race tirade about NASCAR's inability to keep the cars from turning over.
Do you think he got his point across?
2. Hamlin Fights the Power
It's safe to say that NASCAR was in the wrong for fining Denny Hamlin following the Phoenix race earlier this season.
While it isn't necessarily a rant, Hamlin gave the Gen-6 car some constructive criticism after discussing the troubles he had during the race.
However, NASCAR didn't take too kindly to that, and he was fined $25,000 for noting that the Gen-6 car didn't race as well as the Gen-5 car did. Hamlin refused to pay the fine, though, saying that he wouldn't speak about competition-related issues and that his opinion wasn't even a bad opinion.
The general opinion of the ensuing firestorm was that NASCAR overreacted with the fine given that Hamlin was exercising his right to freely express his opinion. The move by NASCAR was out of line, and the fact that it was willing to fine Hamlin for expressing what he had to say doesn't look good for the sanctioning body.
1. Stewart Lays the Smackdown!
This is Tony Stewart's fury at its finest.
While his reasoning for attacking Joey Logano following the Fontana race in April was slightly hypocritical (his opinion of blocking is slightly askew), Stewart's post-race (post-fight?) interview was gold.
Stewart's temper is the stuff of legend. We'll be talking about it long after he retires. So when he lashes out at a kid barely north of his teens, well, it's like Mark Henry taking on Rey Mysterio. It gets ugly.
His post-race interview wasn't so much an interview as it was a tirade, and one couldn't help but feel bad for the hapless pit reporter who had to feel Stewart's wrath.
Later on, though, Stewart calmed down enough to talk to reporters about the incident. Even then, I don't think I'd want to be on the receiving end of his anger anytime soon.