Robby Gordon acted like a spoiled brat again today at the Busch race in Montreal.
With 4 laps to go, while cars were wrecking behind him and Marcos Ambrose, Gordon and Ambrose swapped paint, positions, more paint and positions again before or during the yellow flag that ensued. Television replays were unable to verify if Robby got into Marcos before the tide was turned and Robby went spinning.
NASCAR ruled that Gordon needed to restart in 13th place for the Green-White-Checker finish. Robby disagreed and refused to leave his second place spot behind Ambrose. Even after NASCAR displayed the black flag to the Nextel Cup regular, Gordon stayed behind Ambrose and may as well have displayed a neon sign that said something like, "I'm gonna wreck your sorry kangaroo meat ass." Everyone, including Ambrose I'm sure, knew what was going to happen--Robby would soon punt Ambrose into the bushes. No one was surprised.
NASCAR issued this statement on his placement for the restart:
“Once the caution came out on Lap 72 the field was frozen. Once the field is frozen, all cars must maintain cautious pace in order to be scored.
“At the time that the field was frozen, the 59 was in the lead. The 55 did not maintain cautious pace and by NASCAR rule, cars not maintaining cautious pace are scored only when they blend back into the continuous line. The 55 based on our scoring was ordered to blend back in behind the 33 in front of the 7.
“The tower ordered the 55 multiple times to get in to position. The directive was acknowledged by the crew chief of the 55 and the crew chief also communicated the order to the driver of the 55. The driver ignored NASCAR’s directive.
“He was warned that he would be black flagged if he did not comply. Once the 55 crossed the start-finish line he was posted per the NASCAR rule book and at that time the directive to display the black flag was given.
“After contact with the 59 on Lap 73, NASCAR took emergency action per the rule book Section12-2 thus parking the 55, which was also ignored. The black flag with the white cross was displayed to the 55 when it crossed the start-finish line on lap 74. The 55 finished the race in the 18th position.”
No one was surprised either when Robby pretended to win the race; even doing a celebratory burn out, along with the actual winner Kevin Harvick.
What will become of Gordon? Will he be given the usual 100point / $100,000. fines or will NASCAR sit him down for the remainder of the Busch season? Will they get real aggressive and sit him down for the Cup race on Sunday? NASCAR probably doesn't have enough guts to do that--but should. This was a premeditated act; committed in the face of the NASCAR brass, in attendance in Montreal for the first ever Busch race in Canada.
Robby--you stepped over the line this time. NASCAR is going to make you pay. What will your response be?
photos: Robert Leberge (Harvick) HHWEB.com (Gordon)