The Hendrick team has been appealing their penalties, as well as Kaulig Racing for Justin Haley, so we’ll have to wait and see how that will turn out. Denny Hamlin is also appealing his penalty. As for last weekend’s race at Atlanta, the Truck and Xfinity series races had a record number of cautions, yet the Cup series race was relatively calm with Joey Logano winning with a last lap pass over Brad Keselowski.
I’m not sure how much any of you might have heard, but as far as I’m aware, that Xfinity series race in Atlanta saw perhaps the most viral moment in NASCAR since Ross Chastain’s “Hail Melon” wall ride at Martinsville last year. Here’s what happened; Stage 1 saw so many cautions that there were more laps run under the yellow flag than the green flag, and one car that got damaged in one of those cautions was some guy named Josh Williams. His crew tried to quickly repair the damage to his car with large sheets of tape referred to as bare bond. However, due to the very cold weather that day, the adhesive fails to stick, and as his car goes back onto the track, the bare bond is blown off. That debris quickly puts out yet another caution, so NASCAR officials decide to park Josh Williams, essentially ending the race for him. He got so upset over that call that he decided to stop his car right on the start/finish line, climb out of his car, and then walk across the infield to pit road while waving to the spectators. As I’m sure you can guess, he ultimately received a penalty for that publicity stunt by being suspended for the next race (no fines or points penalties, because as he said in a video recorded when he arrived onto pit road, “What are they gonna do, fine me? I can’t afford to pay it.”) Needless to say, Josh Williams, typically one of those back-of-the-field drivers that most of us would usually know almost nothing about, has now become quite popular for the absurd way he stuck it to the race officials.
Anyway, this weekend’s race is at Circuit of the Americas, the road course in Austin, Texas. I can already say the Cup series race could be very interesting due to several well-known drivers participating, including two former F1 champions (Kimi Raikkonen and Jenson Button), an IMSA champion (Jordan Taylor), an IndyCar racer (Conor Daly), and seven-time Cup series champion Jimmie Johnson.