By: Ashley McCubbin
Over each of the past two seasons, Joey Gase has been the target of criticism in how he has handled racing the leaders once going a lap down. It hasn’t gone unnoticed by the Rick Ware Racing driver, who feels it’s uncalled for.
“We’re all out there in the same race and they have it a lot easier than we do,” he commented. “If they want to switch seats at any time, then I’m happy to do that, or change funding or whatever might be. I’m big fans of guys like Brad Keselowski, to be honest. The reason for that is because he’s been in the very bottom and the very top and he respects everybody, where there are guys that don’t have that respect.
“The second token of that is those guys who have complained about me and Garrett (Smithley), which normally I have a bunch of respect from guys up top because normally we are really respectful of them and they are respectful of us. There’s really only one or two of them out there and in my opinion, those people are cry babies like other people would agree and like to blame other people for them not having success.”
Gase became the subject of Kyle Busch’s comments after Bristol Motor Speedway last September, with the past NASCAR Cup Series Champion feeling the lap traffic took away his chances at beating Kevin Harvick for the win.
“If the lap car wasn’t there, I would have blown it in on the outside, or maybe the inside and maybe we would have banged each others doors or whatever, and had a greater finish at the checkered,” he said then. “But some of those dipshit kids don’t know what the hell they’re doing or where they’re at and can’t stay out of the way. Nothing like a Gase and a Smithley.”
It was not the first comment from Busch in direction to Gase, as he also called out him out following contact back at Las Vegas Motor Speedway a year later. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver made a dig in his post-race comments in saying, “We’re in the top echelon of motorsports and we got guys that never won late model races running out here on the race track,”
Knowing he has been subject to criticism, perhaps conversation to soothe things over and help understanding could be beneficial. However, Gase doesn’t feel that would help in this situation.
“There’s really not normally a whole lot to talk about,” he told NEWS FROM THE PITS. “One minute they’re in a good mood, next moment they’re in bad mood; they’re just a lost cause unfortunately.”
While it can be tough sledding in the Cup Series with one of the smaller teams, Gase does take pride when he can get small victories over others.
“The cool things that I always go back in my career and remember is in 2015, I was racing the Cup race at Richmond and we had to get in on time when I driving for Go Fas Racing, I qualified 31st and there was 47 cars and that was an amazing day,” he recalled. “Then it got ruined by a top driver who needed a caution because he was about to go a lapped down and I just passed his teammate for position. We had a little confrontation the following week and the next week was Talladega, we were both in the top-10 and I beat him coming to the line in an under budget team. It’s the little things like that which make you feel good.”
Categories: NASCAR Cup Series