Johnson Says Hendrick Innocent

Jimmie Johnson

“The Hendrick group and the 48 team did not rat out the Penske cars." (Photo: Getty Images)

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KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Jimmie Johnson denies anyone at Hendrick Motorsports tipped NASCAR officials off about the rear end housing issues at Penske Racing.

In the aftermath of the Penske team being severely fined and penalized earlier this week, rumors of the Hendrick team possible ratting out Penske began to circulate.

But Johnson denied those allegations Friday at Kansas Speedway.

“The Hendrick group and the 48 team did not rat out the Penske cars,” Johnson. “There are two decisions teams are faced with … when the team sees something.
“One, they go home and they try to adapt it to their car and see if they can make it work. Or they go on the truck and say something. We don’t say something. We’re a company built on performance.”

Because Keselowski made comments about rear end suspensions being used by the Hendrick stable last year many believed last week’s Texas incident was a matter of turnabout being fair play.

But Johnson said NASCAR’s open garage policy most likely was a bigger reason rather than singling out anyone at Hendrick.

“When you have success on your side, the viewpoint from everybody, NASCAR, other teams, gets a lot more intense,” Johnson said. “The best officiating in the garage area has always been your neighbor.”

Keselowski did not officially speak to the media on Friday but was outspoken after Saturday night’s Texas race saying among other things he felt his team was being “targeted.”

Johnson also had some advice for Keselowski in that department as well.

“Brad is a huge talent, but as we all know, Brad will say things,” Johnson said. “When you’re in this sport long enough, you learn when you need to be careful."

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