Ryan Newman and Juan Pablo Montoya met the media Friday at Darlington and based on their reaction neither is backing down from their perspective regarding the duo's pair of altercations in Richmond last Saturday night:
Ryan Newman Comments
What is your impression of what happened to kind of start what's going on between you guys?
RYAN NEWMAN: I'm not really sure. I know he's a really hard racer, he's really physical. There's nothing wrong with that as long as you have an amount of respect. I think the respect went out the window Saturday night at Richmond. I'm not real sure why.
I know for a fact that his spotter admitted fault of not even calling me out there on the outside of him there off of turn two. Why he would go and crash me afterwards is disrespectful.
Scorecard or not, what happened clear back at his first race at Homestead was nearly an accident. I was called to the NASCAR trailer after that to be reassured to them that it was an accident. He physically cut across my nose going into turn one on a restart. I crashed myself before that, so I don't understand where the scorecard actually is. It's not like I turned him around. I spun myself off of turn two at Homestead in whatever year it was.
I don't know, number one, who is keeping score, and number two, how they're keeping score, and if it really matters.
Do you feel that issue is over or do you feel you will race Juan differently from here on out?
RYAN NEWMAN: I don't think once you have an issue it's over in what we do. Even when you think you're over it with somebody else, it can reflare really quick. I'm not sure if that was something of what happened at Richmond. But either way, I'm still not happy about it, let's put it that way.
I spoke with John Darby in the garage at Richmond after your group was huddled into the garage there. None of them really wanted to say anything. John said you met with him for a half hour, that you made some valid points. Do you feel NASCAR understood what you had to say in that meeting? I asked if they were going to pull the two of you together. John said, Let's see what happens when we get to Darlington. Do you feel any progress, that they explained anything back to you, they heard what you had to say?
RYAN NEWMAN: I wouldn't say it was progress. I think there were some explanations done on both sides that opened each other's eyes. Ultimately, I don't know if there's an answer.
You know, it was a tough situation that night because of the way everything unfolded. I thought it was the best thing from my standpoint, because of the things I was told, to go into the hauler and have a discussion first before I addressed the situation in any way possible.
Some people out there think that's crying and being a little whiner. But they're not racing anymore.
Ultimately, I don't know how it's all going to play out. I don't want to do anything to his team or to my team in a bad way. Like I said, it was a personal thing, and it will get handled personally.
Juan Pablo Montoya Comments
Ryan Newman was just in here and I know you guys had what you had last week, now that you've had time to reflect is it pretty much business as usual between you two guys or do you keep one eye open?
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA: “No, I think its business as usual. I asked NASCAR yesterday if we should sit down with Ryan before the weekend and I think after this I am going to go talk to them a little bit about it. For me the track is business as usual. We’ve both got to keep running good and get good finishes and move on.”
Can you tell us what you plan to tell Ryan in the meeting today?
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA: “That’s why I didn’t do it in the hauler, so none of you guys know.”
Were your actions specifically because of what happened at Richmond or was it a combination?
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA: “It just adds up. It gets to a point where too much is too much and I felt it had to stop, you know what I mean? I could have done it a lot more aggressively and completely knocked him out of the race but that wasn’t really the plan. I just felt he could have given me about an inch and nothing would have happened but over and over and over has been the case. I’ve been wrecked by him a couple of times. I didn’t mind so much that he did it, I minded that at this point we both need the points and I didn’t feel I was being treated fair. Do what I do, what I had to.”
Can you look back at when it first happened, what caused the rift between you two and why it's lingered? Last year in Indy you said some things about the crew chief on the radio that was aired publicly, so you like the fact that what you say on the radio is aired publicly every week?
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA: “I’ll tell you the truth, with Newman it’s been since my first Cup race. In my first Cup race the guy that wrecked me was him and after that I’ve been wrecked a couple times more by him. Really never wanted to have a problem with him and it’s just a pain in the ass when you are trying to race smart and the give and take, you let everybody by and then you expect people to do the same. It’s just unnecessary. The other side with the crew chief thing, yeah I think there are things that should be on a private channel or something. It’s tough because in the heat of the moment you will say things you are going to regret and the problem with this sport is everything is public so it’s really hard.”
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