Welcome to the team! Nothing like dodging a flying race car during one of your first stops of the season with a new driver. That had to be the thought for the front guys on the #19 of Carl Edwards during Thursday night’s 150 race in Daytona. Clay Robinson and Kevin Harris were challenged when Carl Edwards flew threw his pit box and almost took his two front guys out. Its an honest mistake but one that could have been costly for the 500.

Kevin Harris, front tire carrier for JGR #19 made a good point when we caught up with him and asked him about the stop.

“All night guys had been trying to find a way to warm up. The weather was brutal and it was cold and windy all night. After that stop, I told a few of the guys that’s one way to get warm.”

Both Clay and Kevin avoided getting hit and/ or doing any damage to the car. A large part of that can be contributed to the caliber athletes both Clay and Kevin are. Kevin was a tail back at Wake Forest University and has plenty of athletic ability while Clay is just an all around athletic freak. OK, we lied about Clay and his freakish abilities but he is a 15 year vet who understands racing and knows when to get out of a bad situation.

Watching a stop like this reminds me of how important the new NASCAR rule is about jumping early. A year ago, a crewmen might see Edwards coming in hot and leave a few steps early in an effort to avoid getting hit in case the car went through the box. Now, you have no choice but to wait and hope you’re athletic enough to get across the car. I would expect to see many more close calls like this because crewmen are being way more cautious on when to jump because of the new system.

Good luck to the all the crews this week in the 500 and everyone on pit road.

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