Dale Earnhardt Jr on Harvick’s window: “It’s incredible ingenuity.”
Kevin Harvick’s rear window is the highlighted discussion out of Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Those images first surfaced on the NASCAR reddit channel.
Today, Dale Earnhardt Jr added his voice to the bulletin board.
“The NASCAR reddit folks have brought some attention to some things that they saw on Harvick’s car,” Dale Earnhardt Jr opens the conversation via the Dale Jr download. “And I find this extremely interesting.”
“Not so much about Harvick’s car and are they doing anything illegal. Because the car passed tech before the race and after the race. We know that NASCAR reacted to last year’s situation with Chase.”
Last year, during a post-race interview at Chicagoland Speedway the crew members for Chase Elliott were seen removing a piece of tape from the rear spoiler on camera. The idea there was that the tape created a wicker effect and/or just made the spoiler a few thousandths taller. It was estimated that it added 10-50 lbs of downforce.
Well, the Reddit Police called them out on it. NASCAR reacted by handing Chase Elliott an L1 penalty and an encumbered finish.
This week, it was Kevin Harvick. Who went on to dominate at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
“The roof of the car seems to have some kind of irregular flexing. It’s something at speed that seems to be altering the shape of the roof.”
“I could care less what Harvick and them guys have figured out. If they are actually doing something that actually kinda pops back into place when the race is over — It’s pretty incredible to be honest with you. Impressive.”
“My reaction really is about the relationship between NASCAR and reddit. We don’t know. We’re only assuming that NASCAR reacted to the deal with Chase last year because of the work that reddit did. Is NASCAR going to get in the habit of reacting to reddit police?”
“They’re organized and powerful enough to be heard as a group. They hammer on Gluck and all those guys on social media. They even hammer directly to Steve O’Donnell about anything that they see.”
“There’s a public opinion that they were the one’s that investigated the Chase Elliott thing. That brought a lot of attention to NASCAR reddit encouraging them to continue their effort. Here we are in the 3rd race of the season and it’s popped up again.”
Chase Elliott’s penalty was handed out in the first round on the 2017 playoffs. There’s been just 13 races in-between these events.
“When we get down into the Chase and this is going on it’s going to get louder. I think it’s dangerous. I’m more curious about how NASCAR reacts to this, going forward.”
“They have to think that they need to ignore this. Can they ignore it?”
Do you think NASCAR is going to react in some way, to this one?
“It’s incredible ingenuity.”
“What is probably going to happen is that nothing is going to happen until we get the composite body in the Cup Series. NASCAR’s opinion is, it’s a fix all.”
Last year, NASCAR Xfinity Series teams were handed composite bodies, as an option. The bodies feature all kinda of security devices that prevent the teams from changing the shape. The front end for example has a honeycomb texture. If teams sand it now or ‘putty’ it up, the honeycomb disappears and NASCAR knows they changed it.
“Guys have been trying and been successful at getting the [current] bodies to manipulate themselves, at speed. You can look at the doors of the cars as their sitting still. And then pictures of cars that they post during the race and see that the doors are all kinda warping around.”
“NASCAR’s trying to do a better job to eliminate that. They’re opinion is that the composite body will do that.”
“This is the first time I’ve ever seen it on the roof. But, I talked to another driver who said he’s seen it all the time out on the race track. And seen it in more severe cases of cars that are getting lapped!”
“They’ve been working to find ways to manipulate the bodies for a really long time. And a lot of teams have found good success in it. But, it’s incredible that it pops back into place,” Dale Earnhardt Jr concludes with a laugh.
Crew chief Rodney Childers insisted that it was a broken T bar in the rear window. In addition, he claimed that it was not a performance advantage.