By Jared Turner
After running out of gas while leading with three laps to go in Sunday’s second race of the Chase, Kevin Harvick was not surprisingly upset. Anything less than disappointment under such circumstances would be unnatural and downright strange for a driver who has built a reputation as one of the sport’s most fiery and temperamental competitors. But rather than taking it on the chin like a man and answering reporters’ questions about his team’s late-race gamble that went all wrong, the reigning Sprint Cup Series champion jumped out of his car and made a beeline for the New Hampshire Motor Speedway exits without addressing a single inquiring mind. This, two days after admitting to reporters that he fulfilled his post-qualifying media obligations with a trip to the media center only because he wished to avoid receiving a fine from NASCAR. Really? Harvick’s comments on Friday and his actions on Sunday constitute what most people refer to as “bad sportsmanship.” As the reigning Sprint Cup Series champion, Harvick is an ambassador for NASCAR whether he wants to be or not. It’s high time that “Happy” man up and learn how to accept his disappointments with class rather than taking the easy the way out.
Stewart Is Making Right Decision
Sunday’s breaking news that Tony Stewart will announce plans this week to retire from driving at the end of the 2016 season came as no surprise. It’s been more than two years since Stewart’s last victory, and the three-time Sprint Cup Series champion has endured his worst season ever from a competition standpoint. Rather than continuing to languish in mediocrity for the foreseeable future, Stewart is choosing to hang it up while he remains at least semi-competitive. As hard as that decision no doubt was for Stewart to make, it’s the right one, and he should be commended for it.