August 16, 2011
Said, Villeneuve are NASCAR villains
By DEAN McNULTY, QMI Agency
If there was one good thing to come out of the Boris Said-Greg Biffle dust-up at the conclusion of Monday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen International, it was that Jacques Villeneuve is no longer the most hated road course ringer in stock car racing.
After Villeneuve’s ill-advised wreck-fest at Road America earlier this season, he was the subject of some barbed comments from the likes of Kevin Harvick who hinted the former F1 world champion would get some pay back when the series moved to Montreal this Saturday.
But thanks to Said’s rampage on the final lap at Watkins Glen on Sunday where he took out Canada’s Ron Fellows along with David Reutimann and David Ragan, Villeneuve is pretty much off the retribution radar.
In the aftermath of his bang-up finish Said was confronted by Ragan’s teammate, Biffle, in the garage area, where the driver threw a couple of punches in Said’s direction.
Said is pretty much disliked in the Sprint Cup fraternity for his all-or-nothing approach to racing.
Witness these Twitter remarks directed at him by some Cup drivers after the Biffle incident:
Matt Kenseth: “Glad everyone is ok, Boris once again showed off his road racing skills and great judgement.”
Jeff Burton: “I’m sure Boris is a nice guy but he has caused 2 many wrecks during his cup races. He needs to stop racing over his head”
David Ragan: “Very hard hit today. Gonna be feeling it tomorrow. The prob with Boris is he has no respect for anyone ... We will move on and go win MIS.”
Biffle: “Let me tell u something Boris, ”the roadcourse ringer” caused that wreck. He did the same thing to me earlier in the race off the carousel.
“Then Mr. Class pulls in behind my truck after the race today?! Shouldn’t you go check on David & David? How unprofessional & disrespectful!”
SCHUMACHER BACK IN 2012
Seven-time Formula One world champion Michael Schumacher is sick and tired of reading in the media that he is going to retire from the sport for a second time at the end of the current season.
Calling reports he will quit Team Mercedes “stupid” Schumacher insisted this week he will be back with the team in 2012.
In an interview posted on the Team Mercedes website, Schumacher set the record straight.
“Despite some funny rumours and stupid, untruthful stories ... you will have to see me in 2012, whether you like it or don’t like it,” he said. “I will be there. And the good thing is that I have a lot of support from the team.”
DEAN’S WEEKLY RANT
In the midst of all the other stuff that was going on at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, IZOD IndyCar bosses announced that new aero package kits that were to be part of the roll out of brand spanking-new Dallara chassis next season would be delayed until 2013.
Those aero kits would have given each team the ability to customize their cars, so to speak, giving fans a chance to see race cars that weren’t all exactly the same.
It was a change that was universally applauded by open wheel racing fans and the media who cover the sport.
But team owners had been against the change right out of the gate, citing the $75,000 it was going to cost to equip each of their race cars with the new aero kits.
Their point was that this added cost, on top of the $325,000 for the new chassis, would result in lower car counts at events.
I don’t know if those owners were paying attention on Sunday but with only about 6,000 paying fans in the stands at New Hampshire to watch Sunday’s proceedings, they are coming dangerously close to losing what is left of their fan base by continuing to try and sell what is now little more than a spec series as top-notch racing.