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Tony Stewart's helmet toss

by Dave Grayson
Tuesday, August 28, 2012

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Stewart stares down Kenseth after throwing helmet at his car
We all saw it. Then we all saw it again and again and again. That, of course, would be Tony Stewart's helmet toss at Matt Kenseth's race car during the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at the Bristol Motor Speedway.

The two drivers were racing for the lead when, on lap 333, they made contact strong enough to send both cars flying into the inside wall of the frontstretch. Stewart wound up 27th on the final score sheet  while Kenseth finished 25th.

It didn't stop there. After climbing out of his wrecked car, Stewart threw his beautiful, custom, helmet and bounced it off of the front nose of Kenseth's car. His execution was flawless. Stewart used the double hand, over the left shoulder, approach. The result was a high velocity toss with stunning accuracy.

Equally stunning was the video replay, from an in car camera located in Kenseth's Ford, that allowed us to see the flawless technique of Stewart's helmet toss. The helmet hit the front of Kenseth's car so hard it was a wonder that it didn't seriously damage the radiator. 

In this wonderful age of electronically transmitted instant information, everyone on the entire planet saw Stewart's excellent helmet toss. In a mere matter of minutes the incident was down loaded onto every form of the social media that you could name. Not even Brad Keselowski's famous "Twitter" fingers could move that fast.

Meanwhile, here in southern California, the Los Angeles based sports anchors, whose coverage of NASCAR usually ranges from not at all to about 12 seconds, were all over Stewart's helmet toss. Stewart actually got more coverage than the Los Angeles Dodgers. That may not sound like a lot to many of you but, for a Los Angeles based sportscast that's HUGE!

By the way, those Los Angeles stick and ball desk jockeys were kind enough to extend their NASCAR coverage an additional five seconds to tell us that Denny Hamlin won at Bristol.

This Bristol incident does raise a rather interesting question: could Tony Stewart's helmet toss equate with other major sports? Actually, yes it can.

For example: if Tony Stewart threw his helmet, while standing on the pitcher's mound in a Major League Baseball game, the umpire would have yelled STEEEE-RIKE.

If Tony Stewart was playing quarterback in a National Football League game, that helmet toss would certainly have been a completed pass. One that likely would have put six points on the scoreboard.

If Tony Stewart was playing in the National Basketball Association, his helmet toss would have been a three point shot. Perhaps even one of those game winning shots with one second left on the time clock.

If Tony Stewart used a hockey stick to slap shot his helmet into the goal net then he would totally redefine the old National Hockey League term "Hat Trick."

Finally, and most obvious, if helmet tossing were an Olympic sport then Tony Stewart would be proudly wearing a gold medal right now.

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