“Tough Guy on Twitter”; Fans Ruthlessly Bash Tony Stewart & Team’s “Unapologetic” Campaign Amidst Contradicting Reality

Published 01/06/2024, 11:19 PM EST

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Stewart Haas Racing’s situation is intriguing. With two new capable faces, Josh Berry and Noah Gragson, ready to lead the attack, there is promise. However, for Tony Stewart, replacing the iconic Kevin Harvick and partner Aric Almirola would need more than just talent. As the SHR social media continued on its theme of reminding the world of its abilities, the NASCAR fandom seemed unconvinced.

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Over the past week, Tony Stewart and Co. have reiterated the team’s core values. From a bold and brave approach to a raw brand of racing, Stewart-Haas Racing’s attempt to maintain its stature as a powerhouse has received some criticism. While some fans stated the stark difference between the situation and the team’s mindset, others claimed the post was a cover-up for the team’s struggles in the recent past.

Stewart-Haas Racing reiterates its unfiltered approach

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Since adding 3-time Cup Series champ Tony Stewart to CNC Haas, the team has gradually imbued some of his attributes. Fiery and aggressive as ever, SHR drivers have never been shy about speaking out on issues that bother them. The same mentality also translated into its performances on the track.

With Kevin Harvick leading the team, there was leadership and direction on the team. His departure has hurt the team on and off the track. Additionally, Tony Stewart was more invested in Stewart-Haas Racing‘s welfare back then than he is now. With him competing in Top Fuel next year as a full-time driver, a turnaround in the situation seems improbable.

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The official Stewart-Haas Racing Twitter handle posted, “BOLD & UNAPOLOGETIC. We are who we are, and we’re not apologizing for it. If you don’t like it, we’re not bothered.”

The tweet might seem to some as an attempt to give its fans some hope for 2024. While the Josh Berry and Noah Gragson duo has shown its abilities in the Xfinity Series and Late Model circuits, it is still relatively new to the Cup Series experience. To convince the fans of a successful future, they will need some reassurance. While Tony Stewart and Co. aimed to do that with this post, the NASCAR fandom hasn’t responded kindly.

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Fans slam Tony Stewart & Co.’s attempt to revive hope

With Chase Briscoe aiming to lead Stewart-Haas Racing’s roster, the team could undergo a mentality shift. Josh Berry and Noah Gragson have been itching to prove themselves in NASCAR’s premier competition and could use some direction from the management and senior drivers. However, being on a similar level of boldness as Tony Stewart and Co., the NASCAR fandom didn’t back down from providing a reality check either.

“We’re not bothered’ goes on a PR campaign after fans call out your poor performance,” tweeted a fan dismissing the team’s claims following a rough patch lasting a few years.

I see we’ve reached the cheesy quotes and photos part of the NASCAR off-season,” wrote another fan, unconvinced by the team enticing its fans through the post.

Another fan commented that after having consistent struggles since 2020, Stewart-Haas Racing can avoid performing poorly again. He reasoned that it would make them the laughing stock in the community. “Good lord, if we s*ck again this year, people are gonna look back at this terrible campaign and laugh,” wrote the fan.

“That would be a powerful tweet if you still won races,” wrote a certain fan, taking a dig at SHR’s failure to win a race in 2023. Harvick managed to hold his fort en route to the playoffs without a win, but the rest of the drivers couldn’t.

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Looking at the fans’ reactions, it is understandable that there is a certain level of anguish within the community regarding Stewart-Haas Racing. The team has no other option but to improve significantly, and it might have to be quick.

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Written by:

Ansuman Abhisek

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I instantly fell in love with the sport as I witnessed the cars' breakneck speeds and the robust nature of the sport and its drivers. As I had a deep-rooted interest in automobiles, the sport naturally piqued my interest in a jiffy. Kyle Busch and his cutthroat style of racing played an important role in getting me hooked to stock car racing as I hopped on streams to watch him win races.
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Edited by:

Shivali Nathta

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