Tony Stewart’s Employee Launches 8-Word Attack Against Michael Jordan’s NASCAR Prodigy for Jeopardizing Kevin Harvick

Published 09/05/2023, 3:43 PM EDT

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Being the crown jewel race that the Southern 500 was for all the Cup drivers in the playoff rumble, a victory there was just priceless. On one hand, it would guarantee their spot in the round of 12s regardless of the results in the next two races of 16s. On the other hand, it could have been a good start to the playoff contention. And both fell into the hands of HMS star Kyle Larson, who is now basking in the spotlight.

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However, it was not as sweet for Stewart-Haas Racing driver Kevin Harvick. Sitting on the cusp of retirement, Harvick has been longing for a win. Sunday’s race was a chance at redemption for him. But it all disappeared when he received a penalty of running one lap down after a quick and controversial decision by NASCAR.

Kevin Harvick’s crew chief called out Michael Jordan’s driver

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A mistimed caution flag obliterated all hopes of victory for the #4 Ford team. 307 laps into the race, Kevin Harvick tailed leader Tyler Reddick by 0.508 seconds. It was then that Rodney Childers radioed Harvick to come down to the pit road for a green flag stop. Interestingly, Tyler Reddick’s crew chief Billy Scott did the same, and that too, at that very moment.

However, Reddick slowed down but did not veer down the pit lane. Ryan Newman, who was close behind him, spun into the track, inviting a yellow flag to come out. But by then, Harvick had already committed to the pit road.

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Due to the circumstances, the red light came on, officially blocking the pit road. As a result, Harvick received a penalty for pitting when the pit road was closed. Although he salvaged the situation to make a P19 finish, given the speed of his car, he had perhaps expected a far better outcome.

Many viewed this as a deliberate act on Tyler Reddick’s part. And so did Harvick’s crew chief. During a post-race interview, Childers spoke to Frontstretch about Reddick’s move. He admitted that he understands the compulsion behind winning a race but also stated that he was disappointed with Billy Scott.

He said, “It all happened because the 45 tried to do something he shouldn’t have. I’ve been in Billy’s shoes too; you’re trying to do everything you do not to lose the race at that point…at that point, you gotta run one more lap not just stop in the middle of the racetrack.”

Watch this story: Michael Jordan’s NASCAR Team’s Selflessness Melts Hearts After Jimmie Johnson’s Pit Member Nearly Fell Victim of Grave Tragedy

“It’s part of racing… I hate that it happened but we had a strong car and could have should have,” he added with clear frustration in his voice.

Tyler Reddick had two options; settle for a P2 or wreck the cars in the lead

Reddick moved up to the third spot in the playoff rankings after finishing second behind Kyle Larson. No doubt, he had a really fast car as he battled fearsome contenders like Denny Hamlin, Christopher Bell, and lastly, Kyle Larson.

After the race, a reporter walked up to the 27-year-old Toyota Camry pilot and enquired if the latter thought he could have done anything different in his head-to-head battle with the #5 Chevy.

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Reddick said, “Maybe just a little bit longer run. It had just gotten short enough to where you didn’t have to save a whole lot… Kyle and I were pretty close the majority of the day, honestly, and he just got ahead of us there on pit road.”

“Was the restart your only chance?” asked the reporter.

Reddick explained that it was a tough balance as he kept pushing to try to run down Kyle Larson. But he kept getting loose and at one point, he found himself at the edge of making a decision. “I was either gonna catch Kyle or I was gonna wreck one and two and finish,” he stated.

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He continued, “It just didn’t make sense in my head so we will take the second place. Hopefully, one day in the future we come back and have another shot at Southern 500.”

Tyler Reddick Demands NASCAR Does One Thing for the Fans

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Written by:

Soumyadeep Saha

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Soumyadeep is a NASCAR writer at EssentiallySports. He has done his Master's in English Literature and is a semi-professional bodybuilder. He has, in recent years, channelized his love and commitment for motorsports into a building career path.
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Edited by:

Nischal Kandpal

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