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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Elliott Sadler, open mouth, insert foot…..part two

I few weeks ago I blogged that Elliott Sadler should really think before he speaks. Even some of his most ‘loyal’ fans agreed with comments like ‘he should just read from a script cause when he doesn’t, he just makes himself sound foolish'. Well, once again, Elliott Sadler has made himself look foolish with his comments from his weekly Sirius radio show with host Dave Moody.

It was only fair after Sadler's emotional comments he made when he just got out of a wrecked car last Saturday night that Sadler has a chance to speak more calmly about the contact between him and A.J. Allmendinger. And also have a chance to address the ‘bad press’ and fallout after his comments. Frankly, I have yet to read ANY writer support Sadler’s stance after his actions from the week before at Darlington. (If someone can find any, feel free to post them in the comments section)

While I still think Moody lobs softballs from time to time with his ‘regular’ guests, he did give Sadler every opportunity for some damage control. Once again, we hear Sadler open his mouth, and insert his foot.

Dave Moody: We are hoping to see more of you this weekend than last.

ES: Yeah, that was really hard to swallow. I am still as mad now as I was the other night. We really had a fast racecar, and wanted to run some and make it into the All-star race. I am glad my teammate got in the show and just had a tremendous night. Great call by Kenny to win the race. A lot of optimism for our team because of that.

Dave Moody: Have you had an opportunity to talk to AJ about it…to clear the road a bit between the 2 of you?

ES: No I have not. I am sure we'll bump into each other this weekend in Charlotte.

I am very frustrated with it. I want to say….talk about this today. There is a HUGE difference, and believe me you don't have to take my word for you can ask the other 42 drivers who race week in and week out. ….. Huge Difference in spinning under somebody and taking them out with you. That we see every week…when a guy gets on the bottom and gets loose and spins out and that is a big accident 99% of the time and not meaning to do that….there is a huge difference with that and just hitting somebody with your front bumper, which mean you could just lift off the gas and not run into him….a huge difference our…the way we race against each other because of that…..a big difference to see someone spin out under somebody and taking them out and running into the back of them. There is a lot of INTENT there, and intention to making that happen..there is still a lot of frustration there about that…..

Reagan Swain was one of the first to mention that Sadler was throwing stone from within his glass house, and others have jumped on this bandwagon. Sadler’s justifications simply don't fly and here is why.

1) In both wrecks that the 19 was involved with (Darlington and the All-Star), it appears that the car on the inside gets loose and makes contact with a car running outside of them. Of course it is clear to see that in the Darlington wreck, the 19 slid up into the 20 where the contact was with the 19s right rear quarter panel, to the 20’s left front quarter panel. But the bottom line is that the car running the inside lost control. The results after that fact is moot. And there was no front bumper to rear bumper contact as Sadler is insinuating.
2) Sadler uses the word ‘spinning’ as a justification. When comparing to two wrecks, I fail to see any car ‘spin’, once again, the term ‘getting loose’ is more appropriate.
3) Sadler mentions that ’42 other drivers’ agree that there is a huge difference. I am not sure what series Sadler is referring to, but I have yet to see any other CUP drivers support him in this cause.
4) Lastly, there is the ‘intent’ accusation. This is a very slippery slope Sadler is walking on, and only exposes Sadler as a whiner more than ever. Just as I did not fault Sadler at all for his wreck with the 20 car at Darlington, I’ll do the same for Allmendinger. In BOTH cases, there was no intent to wreck another car that can be seen, especially that early in either race.

Now what seems to be over looked by Sadler, and conveniently so, was that just the last green flag lap before this restart, it was Sadler himself who slid up the track almost in the very same spot, as did Allmendinger. (and thus the 84 car actually passed the 19, but Nascar refered to the previous scoring loop) Had there been a car on the outside of the 19 when this happened, the results would have been similar.

Allmendinger, just as Sadler was Darlington, has been very humble in his choice of words and in his public apology to Sadler and the 19 team. But for some reason, this has fallen on Sadler’s deaf ears.

I think that Brett Griffin addressed this issue a bit better with this post on SFC.

“Most people are gonna defend their favorite drivers. It's part of the sport. I can promise you every Tony Stewart fan was probably happy... nature of the sport. What sucked for us is that's the car that was so fast at the test, that sat on the pole... and that we felt like we could win the 600 win. That's why we were all so frustrated. Hopefully the guys will bring a good car and we'll have a good run. AJ didn't mean to do it but that doesn't make it any easier to swallow. Just ask TS. “

I have ventured over to a handful of Stewart boards after Darlington and after the All-Star and it was interesting to see the responses. After Darlington, I expected to see the mud slinging towards Sadler and the petty name-calling, but to my surprise I saw none of that. The TS fans were very understanding and showed little knee jerk reactions. I guess that comes with the success TS have been able to enjoy over the years. Even when ‘Karma’ could have been used after Sadler was out of the All-Star, there was little mention of ‘pay backs’. It just seemed to me that TS fans don’t like to see anyone get wrecked, whether if it is their driver or another driver.

Also it seems the Brett doesn’t agree with Sadler in terms of ‘intent’ either. I do agree with his frustration even admit the fact, it “doesn’t make it any easier to swallow”, as I was just as frustrated and echoed Brett’s F-Bomb over the scanner. When one has high expectations and early weekend ‘success’ as the 19 did, it stinks to have the results that were handed to them. The unknowns are the ones that sometimes can sting the most.

Problem is that Sadler is acting like a spoiled kid (something his Mom mentioned the week before?) when commenting on this accident over 72 hours later. There is no speaking out of emotion excuse that can be used now. That free pass was used up Saturday night.

Remember, this was a NON POINTS race and DW even made the comment to Sadler before the race to ‘bring the car home in first, or don’t bring it home at all’, and Sadler agreed with that mantra. Of course, that mantra doesn’t apply to next week and the 600. Frankly, I am just as optimistic about the 19’s chances seeing the success from last week.

I would much rather be wrecked in the All-Star than in the 600 when I felt I had a good car. One has to feel that the car used last week, if not wrecked would probably have been this week’s back-up car. So that being said, the 19 has reason to look forward to racing this weekend.

I remember Sadler's sophmore season when it was just about this time of the year and the Wood Brothers were very concerned about the number of cars in the stable that were 'raceday ready', because of all the wrecks Sadler was involved in. I haven't really kept track of Allmendinger, but I would be surprised if the number of wrecked cars would be any higher than back in the 2000 season. How soon we forget sometimes.

I got over the All-Star race late Saturday night; Maybe Sadler should do the same. Sadler is scheduled to appear on 'Nascar tonight' on ESPN2 Wednesday, only time will tell if he choses to use up another mulligan.


Anonymous said...

Sadler was on Nascar Tonight, Wed night and he is still spinning about comparing the two accidents.

The only folks that are buying his spin are Sadler fans themselves. Other than those few peeps sipping the Koolaid, there is not much support.

Sadler should just shut up about this.

Anonymous said...

Looks like no one has found any articles supporting Elliott's claims. I'm not surprised.

Anonymous said...

I am a member of the Sadler Fan Club ans in my eyes AJ has apologized enough & Elliott is coming off as a punk in the deal. Short of AJ getting on his hands & knees begging for forgiveness what else does the man have to do? We understand it was a frustrating situation, we all get that, but it was a racing deal that's all, it's not like AJ was out to purposely & underhandedly try to take Elliott out. It's something that happens on the track almost every weekend. And I don't remember Tony Stewart seemingly holding a grudge like this when Elliott took him out the week before at Darlington. Move on. New week, new race, new set of circumstances.

Anonymous said...

Yeah well, it wasn't intentional. And AJ apologized before they ever interviewed him, as soon as he got out of his car. And Elliott's zinger was blatant pot calling the kettle black. He apparently has a short memory if he can't remember a week back. I don't want to start anything more, so this is the last I'll say on the subject. I'm just about over Elliott and some of his fans, even though I can see that he had a right to be pissed when he had a good car. I can understand that it was anger talking. I just don't take to drivers deliberately putting down other drivers. It shows a singular lack of class.

Anonymous said...

Well said in the previous post. This just dispels any notion that Sadler is this nice guy who never puts down other drivers. I remember when he accused Carl Edwards' team of cheating early in the season during "oilygate" and has repeatedly tore into Jack Roush with childish tirades. Get over it,Elliott. Carl is winning races and it's out of sheer jealousy that Sadler makes his comments putting down other drivers and team owners other than his boss,Ray Evernham. AJ Allmendinger was a gentleman the way he apologized repeatedly and took full responsibility. AJ was more of a man about it than Elliott and unlike the "Southern Gentleman",AJ showed he has class.