Race Weekend Central

Despite Being Helmet Toss Target, Tyler Reddick Has Clear Conscience, 2nd-Place Finish

LONG POND, Pa. — On a day at Pocono Raceway that had more than its fair share on cautions due to on-track incidents, not everyone who got into a run-in ended their day in bitterness.

Denny Hamlin certainly didn’t, taking the checkered flag after bodying Kyle Larson to claim Toyota’s 600th NASCAR victory on Sunday (July 23).

Right behind him? Fellow Toyota driver Tyler Reddick, who had an even more contentious incident — at least according to the other driver involved.

Shortly into the third and final stage, Reddick made contact with the No. 3 Chevrolet of Austin Dillon, sending him into the outside wall in turn 1. To say there was a difference of opinion about what happened is a mild understatement.

Dillon, who said he was wrecked, took out his frustrations by throwing his helmet at Reddick’s car under caution. He later told the NBC Sports TV crew that it wouldn’t warrant a discussion because he was “going to have to start wrecking some people.”

See also
Austin Dillon Crashes After Bump From Tyler Reddick—Tosses Helmet

Reddick was able to laugh off the helmet toss, saying he saw the wind-up and dismissed the idea that it hit his Toyota. But he was surprised that it was headed his way at all.

“Certainly,” Reddick said during his post-race media scrum. “But I know, especially after seeing the replay, that hit into the wall did not feel good. We’ll figure it out.”

How about Dillon’s assertion that he “drove up into me from the bottom lane”?

“I knew we didn’t have a lot of room,” Reddick said. “But I definitely wasn’t trying to squeeze him or run him up the racetrack or anything like that. There’s plenty of ways to look back on it and analyze it. … By the time I realized he was coming down across the racetrack the way that he was, I tried to go right to the brake, but it was too late.”

It’s worth noting that prior to New Hampshire Motor Speedway last weekend, where he finished sixth, Reddick was on a five-race streak where he came home 27th or worse. So while the Dillon confrontation might not meet everyone’s definition of a “clean” day at the track, it suited Reddick just fine.

“It’s as clean as it’s been in a long time,” Reddick said. “I’ll say that.”

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