Note: The quotes in this article are fictional.
1. Kevin Harvick: Harvick started second and sported the best car for much of the day. But two pit road incidents, a loose lug nut and a penalty for too many crewmen over the wall, cost him the win. He still finished second and is fourth in the Monster Energy Cup points standings.
“We obviously were the best car out there,” Harvick said, “but we had to settle for second. That’s frustrating. I don’t like settling any more than Tony Stewart does, but sometimes settling is the best course of action.”
2. Kyle Busch: Busch took advantage of two Kevin Harvick pit road mishaps, capitalizing to take the win in the O’Reilly Auto Part 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. It was Busch’s first win of the year.
“I figuratively threw a wrench into Harvick’s victory aspirations,” Busch said, “while NASCAR literally threw a wrench there.”
3. Ryan Blaney: Blaney finished fifth at Texas and holds the third spot in the Monster Energy Cup points standings.
“Texas was less about competitive racing,” Blaney said, “and more about an uncontrollable tire. I think it’s great for the sport, though. NASCAR hasn’t been blessed with something this round and with a mind of its own since Jimmy Spencer.”
4. Martin Truex Jr.: Truex slammed the wall on Lap 80, leaving the No. 78 Toyota significantly damaged. Truex finished 37th, 254 laps down.
“What made a greater impact?” Truex said. “Me hitting the wall, or Kevin Harvick’s car chief’s and a NASCAR official’s two fists bumping? Are Harvick and NASCAR ‘in bed’ together? If they are, I guess that means they’d be ‘bumping uglies.'”
5. Joey Logano: Logano finished sixth at Texas, posting his sixth top 10 of the year. He is second in the points standings, 38 behind Kyle Busch.
“NASCAR didn’t penalize Kevin Harvick for an uncontrollable tire on their final green flag pit stop,” Logano said. “Is NASCAR playing favorites? When Harvick’s crew chief Robert Smith found out there would be no penalty, he fist bumped a NASCAR official. That shouldn’t happen. This is NASCAR; the only thing bumping into a fist should be Kurt Busch’s face.”
6. Brad Keselowski: Keselowski’s day at Texas ended abruptly when he was collected in a Lap 178 crash triggered by contact between Aric Almirola and Denny Hamlin. Keselowski finished 33rd.
“That’s ‘Aric’ with an ‘A,'” Keselowski said, “and ‘Hamlin’ with an ‘H.’ Much like ‘All’ with an ‘A’ and ‘Hell’ with an ‘H.'”
7. Clint Bowyer: Bowyer started third and finished ninth, earning his fourth top 10 of the season.
“It was a good day for Stewart-Haas Racing,” Bowyer said. “Especially Kevin Harvick. I think it’s clear he has the best car this year. So there are about 39 other cars trailing him. In addition, NASCAR officials are ‘behind’ him, too.”
8. Kyle Larson: Larson cut a tire on Lap 126 and slammed the wall hard, ending his day at Texas. He finished 36th and is now 10th in the Monster Energy Cup points standings.
“Even before my crash,” Larson said, “I knew it was going to be a tough day. My No. 42 car failed pre-race inspection three times. I had to start at the rear of the field, and my crew chief David Bryant was ejected. As you know, they don’t hold back on penalties in Texas, and that includes more than just the death penalty.”
9. Kurt Busch: Busch won the pole at Texas and finished seventh in the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500, as three Stewart-Haas Racing cars finished in the top 10.
“SHR cars also took the top three spots in qualifying,” Busch said. “And Kevin Harvick already has three wins in only seven races. We’re dominating. Everyone is saying Stewart-Haas is the favorite, most notably NASCAR officials.”
10. Erik Jones: Jones led 64 laps and finished fifth in the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500.
“It’s good to see O’Reilly sponsoring a race,” Jones said. “This sport needs all the Irish it can get. And if it’s not Conor McGregor tossing hand trucks through windows, then I guess we’ll have to settle for O’Reilly Auto Parts.”