The Norman Transcript

National Sports

February 15, 2013

Media Day features relaxed champion, dating drivers

(Continued)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. —

Patrick and Stenhouse were open about their relationship, clearly ready for all the ribbing. They shared Valentine’s Day plans with reporters. He called her “hot.” She joked about what would happen if he wrecked her on the track.

“He better have a really good, ‘I’m sorry,”’ Patrick said with a wink.

Four-time series champion Jeff Gordon was fielding questions of his own after filming a “Harlem Shake” video at his race shop — even climbing atop a race car to dance — and the evidence is now online.

“One of the best times I’ve ever had,” Gordon said. “Certainly the best time I ever had in my race shop with my guys in there. Luckily it was quick so it didn’t take them away from their jobs too long because there’s a lot going on at the shop. I’m a little embarrassed at my dancing, but it was still worth it. It was a great time.”

Not everyone had a blast at media day.

Juan Pablo Montoya stared down a reporter who insinuated that the driver might hit another jet dryer this season. Montoya slammed into a dryer during last year’s Daytona 500, setting off a fiery explosion that halted the race.

“People are dumb enough to think I hit the thing on purpose, like I really want to try and kill myself,” Montoya said later. “It is kind of crazy. That was a freak accident, and in a way, I was very, very lucky to walk away from that one. Not only myself, but the guy driving the jet dryer. To walk away with nothing out of that it was a miracle. I was glad it was over.”

Joey Logano, Matt Kenseth and Kurt Busch talked about being with new teams. Kyle Larson, Dylan Kwasniewski, Ben Kennedy and Ryan Blaney looked and sounded every bit like eager youngsters. Austin Dillon wore a black cowboy hat to the event. Dave Blaney donned a pink firesuit.

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