Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Some humble pie for Jimmie

So, Jimmie Johnson admits that he is sorry for wrecking teammate Jeff Gordon during Sunday's race at Talladega. Johnson said it was a mistake on his part, that he didn't judge Gordon's closing speed correctly when trying to join Gordon as a draft partner.
Johnson's words were significant because it was in October of 2006 when he was near victory at Talladega when then-teammate Brian Vickers bumped him out of the way and went on to victory.
Vickers admitted that day in Victory Lane that it wasn't intentional. Of course, any driver who is leading and has a win in sight is going to be frustrated by that kind of accident.
But the telling words that October day from from Johnson's long-time crew chief Chad Knaus, who said of Vickers, "I just don't think he has the talent to understand what he has underneath him."
You can bet Knaus didn't utter those words to Johnson.
What the accident does tell us, is that the cars with bigger restrictor plates can go faster and along with the improved aerodymanics, it's impossible for a car to instantly slow its momentum. So, if Johnson, who does have plenty of talent, can have this kind of wreck, it can happen easily.
But hopefully the four-time defending Sprint Cup champion has learned a lesson that accidents happen. Johnson may very well win that fifth straight title, but maybe this time, he'll be a little more of a humble champion.

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