Today NASCAR handed down penalties against Carl Edwards, Jack Roush, and Brad Keselowski.
After what has been three rounds of NASCAR demolition derby, the most recent penalties finally involve loss of points, monetary fines, and probation.
Edwards, the obvious aggressor in the ongoing saga, will once again slip away relatively unscathed. Twice Edwards has used his car to impede the progress, and ultimately the finish of Brad Keselowski.
Bump and run, especially on the last lap, fighting for the most sought after piece of real estate in auto racing, is now considered aggressive driving punishable by fine, loss of points, and season long probation.
Intentionally crashing your car into another at 180mph and sending that car airborne, which in turn threatens the lives of hundreds of fans, not to mention the life of the driver, only warrants a slap on the wrist.
When Keselowski was interviewed in victory lane at Talladega Super speedway, he was clear that his intentions were to wreck Carl Edwards rather than back off or give up the win.
At the same time Edwards was being catapulted into the catch fence, Keselowski was about to be catapulted into a Sprint Cup ride for his first win, which was arguably the result of his aggressive actions.
To this date not much has changed between the two drivers.
When NASCAR issued the mantra for 2010, “Have at it boys,” they probably had no idea Carl Edwards would be the one to exercise this open invitation to the extreme.
Saturday night Edwards once again returned the favor to Keselowski, and, using almost the same words Keselowski used at Talladega, justified his actions during a post-race interview in Victory Lane.
Edwards has shown that not only will he take full advantage of the new policy, he is also very clear about justifying his actions.
Keep in mind: Edwards cannot go forward unless NASCAR allows it.
Today NASCAR made it clear once again they stand by their policy of allowing drivers to have at it. When things get out of hand, as they did at Atlanta, and as some think, Gateway, a slap on the wrist will be issued, if for nothing else than to appease other drivers, or in this case, give back points to the driver who was irretrievably harmed.
Edwards has, up to this point, continued making a mockery of Keselowski, NASCAR, and the safety of fans and each driver in the garage.
It has become very clear that, without stronger, more appropriate action, Edwards will continue his aggressive assault.
It’s also clear for those who are unhappy with how Edwards is handling himself, that they can feel free to line up for a kiss.
Photo Credit: David L. Yeazell