NASCAR »

Montoya, Sabates make light of Griese comment

Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Sprint Cup star Juan-Pablo Montoya insists he was unconcerned by a quip made by ESPN football analyst Bob Griese that backfired spectacularly at the weekend...
After finishing third in Sunday's Tums Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway, ex-F1 star Juan-Pablo Montoya attempted to make light of a comment made by subsequently-suspended ESPN football analyst Bob Griese during Saturday's Ohio State-Minnesota game.

During a promo for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup that highlighted the top five drivers, former Miami Dolphins quarterback Griese answered broadcast partner Chris Spielman's query of 'Where's Juan-Pablo Montoya?' with an ill-conceived attempt at humour in joking: “He's out having a taco!”

After the race, Colombia native and Miami resident Montoya dismissed the remark with humour of his own.

“I don't really care, to tell you the truth,” the seven-time grand prix-winner insisted, claiming that he had never even heard of Griese. “Yeah, I don't. I could say I spent the last three hours eating tacos, but I was actually driving a car – but that's okay, I don't care.”

Griese has since twice apologised for the 'inappropriate' remark on-air, but has been temporarily suspended by ESPN for a week for his indiscretion.

Cuban-born Felix Sabates, who owns an interest in the Earnhardt Ganassi Racing team for which Montoya drives, also dismissed the severity of Griese's quip. Sabates, who lived in Miami before moving to Charlotte, North Carolina, considers Griese a friend.

“I think he was just joking,” he reasoned. “I didn't take it too seriously. He needs to get his geography corrected, because they don't have tacos in Colombia. Other than that, I don't see anything wrong with it. He was just trying to be funny.

“I know Bob – well, well, well, well. Bob would never say anything like that; that is a racial slur. That's just not him. Bob is not the funniest guy in the world, but he's straightforward. I think he probably tried to put some humour into it, and it backfired on him. No big deal. No harm. No foul.”


Meanwhile, Kyle Busch may not have found the key to Martinsville Speedway to the same extent that his race-winning Joe Gibbs Racing team-mate Denny Hamlin clearly did, but the Nevada-born ace nonetheless professed himself thoroughly satisfied with having turned a 41st-place starting spot into a fourth-place finish on Sunday.

“I'm real proud of the effort,” underlined the 24-year-old, who in so doing posted his best result since triumphing at Bristol back in August. “The guys did awesome pit-stops and we made a lot of changes; at every stop, we made a change on the car trying to make it better.

“Tyres were the name of the game. We just seemed to be on the right strategy when we could come in and get tyres and drive back through some guys. We had a good enough car to do that. I'm glad we came down there (on lap 485) and put right-sides on it, because that probably gained us about eight spots.”

by Reid Spencer / Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Juan-Pablo Montoya, driver of the No. 42 Target Chevrolet in the NASCAR Sprint Cup, at the 2009 Tums Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway [pic credit: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, poses with the trophy in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jake Crum, driver of the #01 My Freedom Smokes Chevrolet, and Bryan Silas, driver of the #99 Bell Trucks America Inc. Chevrolet, are involved in an incident during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, leads Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, and the rest of the field during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, races to win Sunday, August 17, 2014 in the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy Johns Chevrolet SS finished second. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. (Photo by Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, celebrates with a burnout after winning the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
With General Motors CEO Mary Barra, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, holds the Michigan Heritage Trophy after winning the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. In 2013, MIS began awarding the Michigan Heritage Trophy as a recognition and celebration of the automobile and it`s importance to the race track and the manufacturers competing in NASCAR. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, celebrates with his crew after winning the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 GoDaddy Chevrolet, Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row Chevrolet, Trevor Bayne, driver of the #21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford, Justin Allgaier, driver of the #51 Brandt Professional Agriculture Chevrolet, and Michael Annett, driver of the #7 Allstate Peterbilt/Pilot Chevrolet, are involved in an incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo Credit: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, and Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, lead the field to start the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, races Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Chris Buescher, driver of the #60 Nationwide Children`s Hospital Ford Mustang Ford takes the chequered flag to win the Nationwide Children`s 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 16, 2014 in Lexington, Ohio.  (Photo Credit: Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Chris Buescher, drives the #60 Nationwide Children`s Hospital Ford Mustang Ford during the Nationwide Children`s 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 16, 2014 in Lexington, Ohio.  (Photo Credit: Nick Laham/Getty Images)

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


Dan Boys - Unregistered

October 28, 2009 8:32 AM

I see now that some people might have complained about it but if Montoya doesn't care why should anyone else? :? Frank G, unfortunately the USA seems to have the same politically correct disease as we have in the UK - people on the edge of their seats waiting to be offended at the slightest thing. Get this guy back on TV now!



© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.