What’s Right With NASCAR

by John Chapman on August 14, 2010 · 8 comments

You might think this title was just a hook to get you to read it, that I’d morph this into another piece offering, (what I hope is) constructive criticism of NASCAR. Well you’d be wrong. Today I’m going to pick up the pom-poms, put on my rose colored glasses, hell, make that my rose colored welder’s goggles, and try to focus on what’s RIGHT with NASCAR.

You might also think that this is because Tony Stewart has laid NASCAR’s current troubles at the feet of the media- who follow and write about the sport. I’m such an insignificant part of this that what I think (to quote the Old Pea Picker) "won’t even kick their battery needle". However, I happen to disagree with Mr. Stewart. If the people who write about the sport turn into Syncopates then what anyone writes won’t matter because the fans would stop reading.

The reason I’m writing this is because of Vickie. At Bump-Drafts, we listen to our readers, and Vickie, you make a valid point about the negativity of the long time fans dragging you down.So today I want to take a look at what’s right with NASCAR. Besides, I don’t want to be known as "A Nattering Nabob of Negativism". If you can place that quote, you’ve won absolutely nothing, but the satisfaction that your mind still works.

First and foremost, are the fans. Pat yourself on the back. If you care enough, and are devoted enough to be reading about and following the sport, even though you might not agree with everything that’s going on- that puts you in a special category. As I’ve said, "we’re the keepers of the flame".

To extend this thought, instead of focusing on the empty seats, let’s focus on the full ones. At most every race, the crowd is the largest one to view a sporting event in the state. No small feat. The fans have a tremendous financial impact on the entire area. I could digress, and get negative about room, prices, and etc. but rose colored goggles prevent it.

The TV numbers are never going to be on par with the NFL. The Chase is never going to be up there with the interest generated by March Madness, but these are really unfair comparisons. Make no mistake, this is still a major sport, and if it’s measured against any other similar sport, there’s really no contest.

Next is the racing itself. Being personally acquainted with some racers who have been seriously injured or killed because of their love of the sport, this is of tremendous importance to me. NASCAR, at the Cup level, has never been safer.

The point has been made that in what many of us consider the "Golden Age," many times only a car or two finished on the lead lap with the winner occasionally lapping the entire field. A quick perusal of Racing Reference bears that out. Today, thanks to the Free Pass, and the Wave Around, your favorite driver has a much better chance to get back in the hunt. Thank you Goggles.

The new restart format has done what it was designed to do- that’s stimulate the action. Another thing is the  multiple Green White Wreckers, oops, make that Checkers, finishes. We might not always care for the outcome of it, as it pertains to our favorite drivers, but we can’t deny that it does what it’s supposed to.

Cup is by far the most popular racing series in the country, and if it had the international fields that F1 has, it would probably be the number one world wide. Probably, every professional driver in the country would love to have a secure seat in Cup. That has to say something.

It’s really pretty easy to find things we’d like to see changed about this sport we’re so passionate about, but it’s also easy to find thing we like about. If we couldn’t we’d have moved on to the next big thing, like so many others have done. If you need a little help, you can always click on nascar.com, go to products, select Rose Colored Goggles, and BINGO your outlook will instantly improve. At only $49.95, plus shipping and handling, it’s a deal. To quote Maxwell Smart, "Sorry about that," it just slipped out.

Seriously, for the improvements that we’d love to see made, I have to admit that they’re still doing enough right to keep us on the wagon. Thanks Vickie, for pointing out what I should have seen on my own.


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{ 8 comments }

1 RobFromCanada August 15, 2010 at 8:58 am

whast right with nascar?..first..regardless how crappy drivers say the cot is..is still a joy to see Da Biff 4-wheel drifting it round corners..he dont care..he’ll make anything exciting…what else is good?..nascar seems to slowly be coming off its ivory tower and admitting its messed alot up and is willing to finally listen to fans..the side by side restarts are fun stuff..what else is good?..theres still more passing and side by side racing in the first 5 laps of one nascar race than a whole season of F1.

btw..i’ve coined the term(admittedly in my own head) “Danica..Nascars Milka Duno”..ok..hate me..but come onnnnn

2 leonard August 15, 2010 at 10:56 am

Everybodys happy,right?I have often thought if you could swap two drivers,which two would you pick?I would like to put Cuzzin’Carl into the 88 and Dale Jr. into the 99 with Bob Osborne and Jimmy Fennig coaching Dale and you would have a winner and the 88 might just wind up a real contending car,but,thats just dreaming for the Dale nation folks,but I personally feel that Carl would have been great in a WoO sprinter he does have the strength and finesse to do be a real winner there.

3 Jonathan August 15, 2010 at 2:08 pm

Wow im going to drop dead lol a positive article on Nascar thanks…. But notice how theres not many comments, if this was a negitive article there would be 30 comments cause people who come here dont wanna hear anything good about Nascar they only wanna beat the sport with a stick! Sad but thanks for trying

Great Michigan race woooooooooooooo

4 J.J. August 15, 2010 at 2:26 pm

“A Nattering Nabob of Negativism” — I vaguely remember Don Hewitt (of 60 Minutes) saying it about Spiro Agnew (I think), but I’m almost certain it was said long before that…

Anyway.

All I know is that if the economy isn’t the thing keeping fans away from the track and from watching at home, it’s most definitely the fault of the negative media. Those bastards ruin everything.

Except.

The media has nothing to do with the product on the track, all they do is report what they see. And the drivers? Why censor them? Can’t have a race without ‘em. And if they’re trustworthy enough to police themselves via the new Nascar “Have at it, boys.” policy, then they sure ought to be trusted enough to discuss (in public) what they think is wrong with the sport without being afraid of being punished by daddy for speaking their minds.

Nascar wants press, it helps sell the products they endorse, and when you court press sometimes controversy comes with the deal–somebody famous once said, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” Maybe Nascar should quit worrying about “negativity” and work on making their product better. If they do that the fans will come back.

5 Al Torney August 15, 2010 at 2:46 pm

Spiro T. Agnew when he was governor of Maryland after some race riots in Baltimore. He used the “nabob” deal you quoted.

6 dawg August 15, 2010 at 3:06 pm

@Rob
I learned early on, that a four wheel drift isn’t the fastest way around a corner……..but damn, it sure is fun.

@Leonard
If I could switch drivers, I’d love to see Robby in the 48, & JJ in the 7. I’d love to see Cup drivers in Sprinters, but the owners, & sponsors would never allow it.

@Jonathan
Glad you liked it. You’re right about the responses, but did you ever notice, I think more people turn out to vote AGAINST someone, than to vote for someone.

@J J
By remembering Don Hewitt, you’ve proven that your mind is sharper than mine. Spiro was who I was referring to, but you’re right, he probably stole it. He stole everything else. BTW, thanks for saying those bastards, rather than you bastards.

To everyone, as always. Thanks for your comments.

7 Jay August 15, 2010 at 8:16 pm

You do not have to pump up the marshmellow man. He is doing things right and needs no one to brag on him.
But yet everyone loves him.
Nascar has to be bragged on right now to fill the seats. It is time for change just like in the biggining. Some of you remember the time when Nascar had nothing in common with TV Wrestling.
Now we find that both are fake and controlled by people with one thing in mind.
$$$$$$$$$$
I dont blame them. Money make the world go around. But we are the ones spending it to fill their seats.
Respect our opinions and we will fill the seats again.
A sports fan will always be a sports fan. They may change their choice of sport if they find the winner on any given Sunday is being controlled.( Or atleast they are trying to control it) Nascar fans Do Not want a pre-picked winner from those who control the race. The inspection line rules should be the same for everyone. We do not want to see our drivers casterated and their emotions captured in a jar for Nascar Officlals to set on their mantles above the fireplace.
We all love Racing. It is in our blood and once you have a taste of it, your hooked. So maybe it is time for the small tracks around the Country to recieve our support. Nascar has sucked all the sponsership money out of every chamber of racing and in this economy it will be tough to get the fans to spend their hard earned money or vacation to follow a Nascar race. They would rather sit in the stands and watch a good high school football game.
Come on Nascar. Clearify your rules and make the playing field even for everyone.
Just a thought.

8 f e dup August 16, 2010 at 12:20 pm

I ALS0 LOVED THE 4 WHEEL DRIFT . I BELIEVE THE RADIAL TIRE TOOK THE CONTROLED SLIDE AWAY . IF THE RACES WERE REALLY FOR ” OUR ” VIEWING PLEASURE THERE WOULD BE SOME CHANGES .

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