As for having a chance to win from 25th...well, plate racing is a unique creature. If you can avoid the wrecks and drive with guts, there is no question you have a chance to win or finish top five, even when coming from the back. Jeff Gordon and Kyle Busch came from the back of the pack at the end of the race to finish 5th and 6th.
Perhaps timing was the biggest issue for the 88 and 48. Over the scanner, Jr. wanted to move forward on several occasions, but Johnson felt it more prudent to hold back a bit.
Jimmie Johnson is a five-time champion, so I don't question his strategy. It works for him, and there are those who would go with what he recommends. For me, if I were him and had the Yoda of plate racing as my partner, I'd push him like a Jedi to the front as soon as he said "Go!" In fact, for a time, Yoda Dale got up there on his own, without a partner. This illustrates yet another problem with tandem, tango racing: two drivers have to be on the same page, despite their different racing styles.
I do feel bad that Jimmie Johnson had to field accusatory tweets from Earnhardt Nation, but I do wish he hadn't used the word crazy. Fans, true fans, are loyal. If I were a betting gal, I'd say even he has let a few colorful metaphors fly at a referee after missing a call that cost his favorite team the win.
Athletes and fans aren't so different, really. Emotions run high when you love your team, no matter the sport. Much like athletes, sometimes fans just need to cool down and look at the aftermath with a clear head. Maybe fans shouldn't have bashed him...and maybe he didn't need to call them crazy. Sometimes, emotions can get the best of everyone.
It seems like tandem racing creates more problems than not. Boredom aside, this style of racing forces drivers with very different driving styles to rely on each other for a win, eliminates any chance of making memorable moves, and, in the end, can even compel frustrated champions to take aim at equally frustrated fans.
Until NASCAR goes back to the good old days, Daytona just isn't Daytona, Talladega isn't Talladega, and Dale Earnhardt can't be Yoda. What a shame.