NASCAR Announces Modifications To NASCAR Hall Of Fame Eligibility And Selection Process
posted by Mike Neff
Thursday December 5, 2013
The Sanctioning Body Also Creates New Award For Outstanding Contributions
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 5, 2013) – NASCAR today announced a number of changes to the selection process for the NASCAR Hall of Fame (NHOF), including a modification to driver eligibility parameters and the creation of a new award to honor significant contributions to the growth and success of the sport.
In all, six changes and updates will be made starting with the selection of the Class of 2015 – all designed to improve upon an already strong process that has led to the selection of 25 deserving inductees.
“We’re very proud of how the NASCAR Hall of Fame has evolved and believe the first five classes reflect the strength of the nominating and voting procedures, with voices from every corner of our industry included in the selection process,” said Brett Jewkes, NASCAR vice president and chief communications officer. “Based on feedback from voters, industry leaders, media who cover our sport and the fans, we believe the changes announced today are a strong recognition of the uniqueness of our sport and will make the overall selection process even stronger in how we honor those who have driven NASCAR to great success on and off the track.”
Following is a summary of changes:
Currently, drivers who have competed in NASCAR for at least 10 years and been retired for three years are eligible for nomination to the NHOF. That will not change.
Moving forward, however, drivers who have competed for a minimum of 10 years and reached their 55th birthday on or before Dec. 31 of the year prior to the nominating year are immediately eligible for the NHOF. Also, any competitor who has competed for 30 or more years in NASCAR competition by Dec. 31 of the year prior to the nominating year is automatically eligible, regardless of age.
Drivers may continue to compete after reaching any of the aforementioned milestones without compromising eligibility for nomination or induction.
Nominating Committee Will Select Five Fewer Nominees for Enshrinement
Throughout its history, the NHOF Nominating Committee has selected 25 nominees each year to be discussed and voted on for NHOF enshrinement. That number will be reduced to 20 starting with the selection process for the 2015 class.
Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR
Beginning with the 2015 class, a new award – Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR – will be initiated to honor significant contributions to the growth and esteem of NASCAR.
Potential Landmark Award recipients could include competitors or those working in the sport as a member of a racing organization, track facility, race team, sponsor, media partner or being a general ambassador for the sport through a professional or non-professional role. Award winners will remain eligible for NHOF enshrinement.
Five nominees will be selected by the NHOF Nominating Committee and then be voted on by the Voting Panel. To win the award, an individual must appear on at least 60 percent of the ballots and no more than one award will be presented annually. Voting for this award will occur immediately following the voting for the NHOF class and be monitored by the same independent accounting firm that oversees NHOF voting.
Nominating Committee to Meet, Vote on 20 NHOF Nominees / Five Landmark Award Nominees
For the first time, the Nominating Committee will meet in person to discuss, debate and vote to create two ballots – the NHOF ballot and the Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR ballot. Previously, the committee submitted nominees via mail to an independent accounting firm that tallies the nominations in order to create the final NHOF ballot.
The Nominating Committee will meet during Speedweeks at Daytona on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, and the nominees for both ballots will be announced later that day.
Nominees To Be Recused From the Nominating / Voting Process
Any member of the Nominating Committee or Voting Panel who appeared on the previous year’s ballot or current year’s ballot will now be recused from participating in the nominating and / or voting process for as long as he / she appears on the ballot. If an individual who is currently on the Nominating Committee or Voting Panel is inducted, or is no longer included on a final ballot, he or she is immediately reinstated to active participation on the panel(s).
Reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Added To Voting Panel
As was already announced on Nov. 14 at Homestead-Miami Speedway during the annual NASCAR Championship Contenders Press Conference, the reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion will be added to the following year’s voting panel.
That means Jimmie Johnson, who captured his sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship, will be included in the selection meeting and can cast a vote for the NHOF Class of 2015 on Voting Day, Wednesday, May 21, 2014.
NASCAR Purchases Iowa Speedway
posted by Mike Neff
Wednesday November 27, 2013
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Nov. 27, 2013) – In a strategic move designed to expand its commitment to enhancing event experiences and fan engagement, as well as solidify the future of one of the premier racing and entertainment facilities in the Midwest, NASCAR announced today that it has purchased Iowa Speedway. The agreement, finalized today under a wholly-owned subsidiary, Iowa Speedway, LLC, is effective immediately.
“Iowa Speedway is a great entertainment facility with a very bright future,” said Eric Nyquist, NASCAR vice president, strategic development. “The facility has the support of the region, it’s positioned well in the heart of the Midwest, and year in and year out it provides great short-track racing action for motorsports fans.
“NASCAR ownership will allow us to draw on the entire resources of our company. It also provides us with the opportunity to execute first-hand a number of entertainment ideas and engagement opportunities with fans – much of which we have outlined repeatedly as the core of our Industry Action Plan.”
The facility, located 30 miles east of Des Moines in Newton, features a fast, .875-mile asphalt paved tri-oval designed by NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace. The Speedway released its 2014 schedule earlier this month, encompassing three weekends, one each in May, July and August. The schedule will include two NASCAR Nationwide Series races, a combination NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and IndyCar Series weekend, plus two additional NASCAR K&N Pro Series support races. NASCAR has no plans for Iowa Speedway to host a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race next year or in the immediate future.
NASCAR will host a special event in Des Moines on Thursday, Dec. 12, to outline additional details on the purchase and plans for the future. Information on this event will be announced soon.
The 2014 Iowa Speedway season opens May 17-18, with the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East versus West Challenge on Saturday night. The stars and cars of the NASCAR Nationwide Series then will battle on Sunday in a 250-lap, high-speed contest. The race marks the only Sunday afternoon event of the season at Iowa Speedway.
The new NASCAR Camping World Truck Series / IndyCar Series race weekend at Iowa Speedway is slated for July 11-12. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will race Friday night and feature short-track racing action that has become synonymous with the series in the American Ethanol 200. The first-ever Iowa Corn Indy 300 will follow on Saturday night.
On Friday, Aug. 1, a second NASCAR K&N Pro Series East versus West challenge race will be held followed by a second NASCAR Nationwide Series 250-lap event on Saturday under the lights.
Season ticket holders may renew their tickets for the 2014 season, and will have an exclusive right to secure their current seats until Dec. 14. All other seats are available for purchase immediately, with season ticket prices starting at $95. All season tickets will include a guaranteed seat location, complimentary Casey’s Fan Walk pass and an opportunity to participate in pre-race ceremonies. Season tickets, parking passes and onsite camping options are available online at www.iowaspeedway.com, or by calling the toll-free ticketing hotline, 866-RUSTY-GO (787-8946).
Iowa Speedway’s ticketing office, located at 3333 Rusty Wallace Drive in Newton, also will be open to assist customers from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, holidays excepted.
2014 IOWA SPEEDWAY EVENT SCHEDULE
Saturday, May 17 – NASCAR K&N Pro Series East vs. West Challenge
Friday, July 11 – American Ethanol 200, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Friday, August 1 – NASCAR K&N Pro Series East vs. West Challenge
Stewart-Haas Racing announces reorganization of their Competition Department
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday November 19, 2013
Stewart-Haas Racing is expanding to four teams in the Sprint Cup series for 2014. As a result, the organization is realigning some personnel into new roles within their competition department. The new assignments for 2014 include:
1) Greg Zipadelli has been named Vice President of Competition and will oversee all four Sprint Cup teams. The crew chiefs of the teams will report directly to Zipadelli.
2) Matt Borland has been named Vice President of Engineering. The role will involve Borland overseeing the organization’s technical initiatives and a myriad of research and development projects. As Borland moves into his new role he will become a mentor for the crew chief of the No. 41 Haas Automation team of Kurt Busch.
3) Race Engineer Daniel Knost is being promote to the position of Crew Chief for Busch’s No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet. Knost is an engineer with a Master of Science and PHD in Mechanical Engineering from VPI and Virginia Tech. Knost’s previous roles at SHR included running the team’s seven-post shaker rig, at-track race simulation support and race engineer for both the No. 10 and No. 39 teams.
4) Chad Johnston is going to take over the Crew Chief position for Tony Stewart’s No. 14. Johnston has spent the last three years as Martin Truex Jr.‘s Crew Chief at Michael Waltrip Racing. Johnston brings Hoosier roots to the organization like Stewart. He is a graduate of Indiana State University with a degree in Mechanical Engineering.
5) The Crew Chief for Kevin Harvick’s No. 4 ride in 2014 will be Rodney Childers. Childers moved to SHR in October of 2013 from MWR where he was a Crew Chief for the No. 00 David Reutimann and then the No. 55 for multiple drivers. Childers Crew Chief resume extends back to 2005 when he was the head wrench for MB2/MBV Motorsports with Scott Riggs.
6) Tony Gibson will remain on top of the pit box for Danica Patrick in the No. 10 car for 2014.
Steve Addington is leaving SHR for other opportunities. The word is he will be the Crew Chief for the No. 51, working with his good friend Kevin ‘Bono’ Manion.
2011 Daytona 500 Champion Trevor Bayne Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday November 12, 2013
Daytona 500 winner and Roush Fenway Racing (RFR) driver Trevor Bayne has announced today that he has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Bayne – 22 years old – has undergone extensive testing at the Mayo Clinic and has been cleared by doctors and NASCAR to compete behind the wheel.
“I’ve never been more driven to compete,” said Bayne. “My goals are the same as they’ve been since I started racing. I want to compete at the highest level and I want to win races and championships. I am in the best shape I’ve ever been in and I feel good,” added Bayne. “There are currently no symptoms and I’m committed to continuing to take the best care of my body as possible. I will continue to trust in God daily and know that His plan for me is what is best.”
In 2011, Bayne became the youngest driver in NASCAR history to win the famed Daytona 500. He is currently sixth in the NNS standings, having accumulated one win, six top-five and 20 top-10 finishes in 2013. He will compete again full-time for the NNS championship in 2014, driving the No. 6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang.
In 117 career Nationwide Series races Bayne has two wins, 18 top 5s and 50 top 10s with six poles. Bayne also has 45 career Sprint Cup series starts. In those starts he has the one win in the 2011 Daytona 500, one top 5 and three top 10s.
Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable disease of the central nervous system which interrupts the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and the rest of the body. Symptoms range from reduced or lost mobility to numbness and tingling to blindness and, in extreme cases, paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, and each person diagnosed with MS experiences the disease in a unique way.
Penalties Issued Following Sledgehammer Throw
posted by Phil Allaway
Thursday October 31, 2013
Last Saturday’s Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway will likely be best known for Darrell Wallace, Jr.‘s historic victory. However, late in the race, a crash involving Ty Dillon and Kevin Harvick, along with the pit road actions afterward, also made headlines.
Dillon got in the back of Harvick in Turn 2, spinning the Sprint Cup regular out, who then ran into the driver of the No. 3 Chevrolet. Dillon then responded with a number of unsuccessful attempts to spin out Harvick. When both drivers got to pit road, Harvick blocked Dillon’s stall and threw down his window net, prompting a scrum where a sledgehammer was thrown by a member of Dillon’s team at Harvick’s truck.
On Friday morning, NASCAR responded with penalties stemming from the pit road altercation. Marcus Richmond, crew chief of the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, has been fined $10,000 for failing to maintain control of his crew. Meanwhile, crewmember Adam Brown was judged by NASCAR to be the person who three the sledgehammer at Harvick and was suspended indefinitely.
In their press release, NASCAR cited violations of multiple sections of the 2013 Camping World Truck Series Rule Book. The sections cited were 12-1 (Actions Detrimental to Stock Car Racing) and 9-4A (Crew chief resumes responsibility for the actions of his driver, team owner, and team members in addition to himself).
There is no word as of yet from Richard Childress Racing as to whether they plan to appeal the penalties.
Marcos Ambrose to have new sponsor for Dover Cup race in September
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday October 29, 2013
The current economic environment has seen sponsors cutting back and even leaving the sport. Richard Petty Motorsports announced on Tuesday evening that they will have a new sponsor on the hood for the Dover Cup race and an associate sponsor for half of the season. Stanley and their associated brands Mac and Dewalt will also be back for 2014 on the No. 9 Ford for Marcos Ambrose.
Brian Moffitt, the CEO of Richard Petty Motorsports noted that the company is willing to run an alcohol sponsor on the No. 9 but will never do it on the No. 43. “Richard promised his parents that he’d never run an alcohol or tobacco sponsor on his car and that will hold true as long as we’re an organization.” When he was asked about how this came about he said, “This just kind of happened. There are relationships out there in the marketplace that are always talking with each other. We ended up going to Boston and having a discussion with the company and the next thing you know we are partners.”
Twisted Tea is a division of Boston Beer Company, most famous for the Samuel Adams beer brand. Jon London, the Boston Beer Director of Brand Development was on hand and loves the marriage between Twisted Tea’s customers and NASCAR. “We look at NASCAR and think that they, along with Marcos Ambrose, are just a great fit for the brand. Our drinkers love NASCAR and Marcos is a little bit different, our drinkers are a little different and Marcos is a lot of fun so he’s a great person to represent our brand.”
Moffitt also confirms that, while there are a few openings left on the 2014 calendar for RPM, both Ambrose and Aric Almirola will be back in 2014 and should have all of their races covered by the start of the season.
Darrell Wallace Jr. Scores Significant Victory at Martinsville
posted by Mike Neff
Saturday October 26, 2013
Darrell Wallace, Jr. etched his name in the NASCAR history book under two different columns on Saturday at Martinsville Speedway. Wallace took the checkered flag first to become the second African-American driver in the history of NASCAR to win a National touring series race, and the first to win a Truck Series race. He is also the second graduate of NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity to win a national touring race, following Kyle Larson’s victory at Rockingham Speedway earlier this season.
Wallace led a race-high 96 laps en route to his win. He led three times including the final 50 laps. Wallace outran Brendan Gaughan, Jeb Burton, Ben Kennedy and Ryan Blaney to secure his win. The average age of the top 5 at Martinsville was 23.8 with four of the five drivers being under 22 years of age. Wallace is the second non-Cup driver to win in a Kyle Busch Motorsports truck following Brian Scott’s win at Phoenix last season.
Hamlin Picks Up a Pair of Poles in Martinsville
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday October 25, 2013
Denny Hamlin will start on the pole for Sunday’s Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway after setting a new track record with a lap time of 19.013 seconds, good for a speed of 99.595 MPH. Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch ran identical second-place times of 190.61 seconds. Johnson will start on the front row after winning the tie-breaker, car owner points, where Johnson currently sits first. Busch will start third, and Matt Kenseth and Clint Bowyer round out the top 5. Joey Logano, Jamie McMurray, David Ragan, Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick complete the top 10.
The pole is Hamlin’s 17th in 288 races. It’s also his fifth of 2013, a career-best for Hamlin, whose season was interrupted by a back injury earlier in the year.
In all, 18 drivers broke the previous track record, set in the spring race this year by Johnson. Bowyer broke the 100 MPH mark in practice, but no driver was able to duplicate that in time trials. The Sprint Cup drivers will have a pair of practice sessions on Saturday before Sunday’s 500-lap event.
Seven Chase drivers qualified inside the top 10, and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Carl Edwards clocked in in 12th and 14th, respectively. Other Chase drivers include Ryan Newman (17th), Kasey Kahne (25th), and Greg Biffle (33rd).
Hamlin wasn’t done after his Sprint Cup qualifying effort. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers took their time trials after the Cup teams had their shot, and Hamlin duplicated his earlier effort, snagging the pole for the Kroger 250 in the No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports entry. Johnny Sauter, Darrell Wallace, Jr., Ron Hornaday, Jr., and Ty Dillon round out the top 5 for Saturday’s race.
2014 Camping World Truck Series Schedule announced
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday October 25, 2013
NASCAR announced the 2014 Camping World Truck Series schedule today at Martinsville Speedway. The series will run 22 events in 2014 starting at Daytona on February 21st and concluding at Homestead on November 14th. The schedule includes stops at New Hampshire Motorspeedway and Gateway Motorsports Park next year. The series will once again turn right and left at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park along with slinging mud for the second consecutive year at Eldora Speedway.
2014 Camping World Trucks Series Schedule
Feb 21 Daytona
Tweet Lands Another Driver In Trouble
posted by Phil Allaway
Thursday October 24, 2013
NASCAR announced on Wednesday that Corey LaJoie has been placed on probation after posting an inappropriate tweet on Twitter last week. He will have to attend sensitivity training as prescribed by NASCAR.
In their statement, NASCAR stated that LaJoie is being penalized for “an insensitive and intolerable communication” posted on Twitter on October 15. The tweet, which has since been deleted, suggested that the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) should conduct a cavity search on a man wearing a turban.
Wednesday afternoon, LaJoie tweeted out a statement.
“I am very sorry for those offended by my recent remark,” LaJoie tweeted. “It was an immature & insensitive comment. I am upset with myself and how this has affected what has been a very positive year in my career.”
This incident marks the second time this season that NASCAR has penalized a driver for comments on social media. Earlier this season, Nelson Piquet, Jr. was forced to attend sensitivity training after using a homophobic slur in the comments section of an Instagram picture that Parker Kligerman posted.
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Holding a Pretty Wheel · Amy Henderson · Thursday July 12, 2007
You know the guy (heck, maybe you ARE the guy). He parades around the track with the little Jeff Gordon doll in the noose dragging behind, just hoping someone will kick it around. He (or she) boos Tony Stewart vehemently during driver intros. He calls Jimmie Johnson all kinds of unprintable things that have nothing to do with his racing ability. He is pretty vocal about whether Jack Roush is well, a nice guy or not. He has already decided that he will no longer be a Junior fan because Junior is going to drive for Hendrick Motorsports.
There is a small but vocal group of race fans who seem to have more fun hating one driver or another than they do cheering for the drivers they do like. They appear to attend races with the singular goal of booing a driver (or a select group). In fact, they boo louder than they ever cheer-at least until the guy they were booing gets in a crash. If-heaven forbid!-the guy they were booing actually wins-they shower him with beer cans, many with a good portion of the beer still inside. At Indy last year when Johnson climbed from his car to retrieve the checkered flag he'd dropped-a few cans were aimed at him-no helmet, no car. Those people are race fans?
I'll be the first to admit I don't understand this mentality. Not that there aren't drivers that I dislike strongly-there are-but I just don't get the animosity. Not only could booing during driver introductions be the last thing a driver hears other than the roar of the motor and a grinding crash, but it seems to be missing the point. Many of the drivers who are routinely booed, including the late Dale Earnhardt, have said that the boos merely pump them up to compete (pretty sure the guy booing Kurt Busch isn't trying to actually help him, but he just might be). In fact, Earnhardt said that he'd be more worried if the boos stopped-because that would mean people weren't watching him. That's right; to the drivers, silence hurts more than sound. The drivers who routinely get this treatment are also routinely winning races. Maybe the boos are fueled by jealousy. Hmmm…
Why someone would hate a driver so much it overshadows being a fan of someone, I have no idea. Nobody likes losing, but why does someone's hard work and winning have to be a reason for outright meanness? Is disdain for someone's car owner really a reason to wish him hurt (yes, I've heard that!)? There are drivers I don't respect because of their on-track tactics, but I don't understand the outright animosity for some, especially those who go out of their way to drive clean. There are car owners I don't like, but I would never quit cheering for my drivers if they went to their organization thinking it was their best career and life option. It's not like they ran off with your girlfriend, keyed your truck and killed your dog. (Incidentally that can be remedied, I hear, by playing country music backwards.) All they do is race, try to please their demanding sponsors and fans, and still try to have a personal life. That's it.
Not only is the booing ridiculous, dead silence would send a much more effective message, but the wearing of derogatory t-shirts and dragging around miniature effigies is also. I mean, that stuff is expensive! Personally, I'd rather spend $25 on an item in support of my driver than on a beanie, a t-shirt, and a piece of rope, all for some guy I don't even like! Ditto spending time on Internet message boards slamming them. Wouldn't that time be better spent on writing about how great their chosen driver is? Especially if their guy has haters of his own! What goes around, comes around, pal.
It kind of makes me worry about our society in general. When did being hurtful, in front of children no less, become not only apparently acceptable, but fun? Are we really so insecure in ourselves that we need to put other people down to feel better? Sure we've all made a remark about someone-but the fans I'm talking about do it not only in front of other fans and their children, but the drivers and their children. How do you think that driver's wife and kids feel when he hits the wall, and before he can indicate that he is even okay, people are cheering his misfortune, not even knowing whether or not he’s been seriously injured. Some have even gone so far as to say to a driver's family, "I wish he'd crash and burn" or the like. Is this what kind of people we're bringing up today?
Seeing little children doing this is even worse. Children, as the saying goes, have to be taught to hate. And, judging by the scene in the stands, legions of them are being taught just that. That's downright scary. This kind of behavior toward one person could easily blossom into a group of people and then what? Great parenting there. Aren't we better than that? Aren't we?
My advice to these bitter fans would be to be a decent example for the kids at the track. Cheer your guy loudly. Proudly display his merchandise, even drink a beer toast to his victory. But keep the boos, the derogatory comments, the little beanies and the beer cans to yourself. Remember who's watching, and act like responsible adults. Love your driver, even if nobody else does. Just don't hate mine or anyone else’s and have a little class and realize that he's human, too. And so are those kids who are watching and learning by example-and who want to be real race fans when they grow up.
©2000 - 2008 Amy Henderson and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
I love it Amy!! And I know what you mean about booing drivers, having heard the booing ever since I started watching NASCAR back in 1994. It didn’t help that I was a Jeff Gordon fan during the time when he was winning races and championships, and now as a Kurt Busch fan I hear it all at the track and on the message boards everywhere. Shame on those “fans” who feel the need to act like children.
A most excellent article Amy. Fans’ whose main purpose is to hate a driver(s) moreso than to cheer for their favorite is probably the one thing that I have a hard time understanding in this sport. I have seen it in other sports but not to the degree I have in NASCAR. It’s just very sad that there are that many fans driven by negative, hateful feelings.
Very well said.
Earlier this year Kurt Busch was on Trackside. When the crowd started to boo him he turned to them and egged them on, saying, “I can’t hear you,” and “You can do better than that.”
Unfortunately, our society has, for the time being, rejected the concept of a common standard of decent behavior in favor of the selfish cries of “I have a right to my opinion,” as justification for any sort of tawdry, mean-spirited display of idiotic animosity.
What a great article! I’ve often thought the same thing. This attitude seems to be everywhere – in the workplace, TV, movies, music, sports, the school system, etc. If people would just put their effort into supporting the things they feel are worthwhile rather than fighting the things they don’t like, the world would be a much better place.
Hate brings viewers. To the track as well as the TV and internet forums. Very few want to see or read about something positive ALL the time. Hate is about the bad guy. We hate the Joker and the Riddler, but Batman wouldn’t exist without them. We are attracted to him or her. Hateful forum posts have more views and responces than the positive posts. Take a look at FS itself. These “bad boy” articles you fine folks write have more responces than the positive or even the informative articles have. Its the way we are wired. I’m not making excuses mind you, just pointing out my observations.
Pay real clear attention to the next race that JGordon crashes out of. The cameras will pan the crowd showing the cheers ONLY for this driver, no others (that crash out). NBC was famous for doing this. Why? Because he is hated so much. Hate brings viewers, viewers bring money.
Ah well, off to the go-cart track with my son I go. To cheer him and the other kids on, along with the other parents.
Worst thing about this is, the people booing, dragging effigies, throwing beer cans, and so on—don’t even know the maan they’re slamming. Never met him, haven’t spent any time with him, yet are sure they have a reason to hate him.
Wonder how they feel when someone judges them the same way?
My sentiments exactly. You don’t have to like every driver or your boss for that matter but you should show proper respect.
“I don’t like how this guy drives around in a circle for 4 hours risking his life. I am going to throw a BEER CAN AT HIM!!!!”
great article. what i don’t understand nor can i comprehend is the notion of “winning too much”. what’s that about? isn’t that the premise for those brave men/women strapping themselves into that hot car?! i think voelker stated it best regarding everyone would rather justify their opinion (negative or not) rather than something constructive for the benefit of people. having an opinion is one thing, but violently displaying and supporting that opinion seems quite barbaric. NASCAR, it has been said, is about the “good ol’ boys”, but many in the stands don’t fit that mold. personally, i find it difficult to hate someone i don’t like … i may not cheer for Tony, JG, etc, but i refuse to boo them at the track. it’s counterproductive to spend money to “support” the sport, but go out of one’s way to just breed hatred and anger. what a world!
Amy – good, bad or ugly, people are always going to boo and cheer. Fortunately, most fans are smart enough, and adult enough, to do this in the way it’s meant – in jest of their friends or family who are rooting for someone else. Anyway, what I really wanted to comment on was your remark about “playing country music backwards”; I think Rascal Flatts sings it best from their Me And My Gang album…check it out:
Ya get your house back â€“ ya get your dog back
Ya get your best friend Jack back
Ya get your truck back â€“ ya get your hair back
Ya get your first and second wives back
Your front porch swing, your pretty little thing
Your bling, bling, bling and a diamond ring
You get your farm and the barn
And the boat and the Harley
First night in jail with Charlie
It sounds a little crazy, a little scattered and absurd
But thatâ€™s what you get when you play a country song backwards!
Just a little humor – have a great weekend everyone and let’s go racing at CHICAGO!!!
So glad to see that all the PC people are getting their point across. Not only a rule book for NASCAR but also one for NASCAR fans. Everyone has to treat each driver equally. No having any fun with a little ribbing with signs or dolls or whatever. Someone might get their feelings hurt. Maybe after everyone has dulled up NASCAR you can move on to the NFL. Those poor big guys feel so bad when the opposing teams fans boo as they come on the field. Everyone should sit quietly and politely thru the whole race. An applause meter will be in each grandstand to make sure that each driver gets the same amount of “love”. Amazing that fans 20 and 30 years ago go could to races and behave without a rule book. Oh yeah, those uncouth people with the chicken bones HAD to GO. So glad you guys are here now to educate us.
Great article Amy. I don’t have any children, but I know a few families that will no longer allow their children at the racetrack because of the hateful, barbaric behavior that goes on there. The debris throwing is unaccepatable and needs to be harshly punishd. It’s a miracle that no one has been seriously injured.
As for the people who feel the need to wear hateful items and accesories – that speaks volumes about what kind of person they are. Do they know these drivers personally? No. Have these drivers done something to them personally to explain this hatred? No. I mean how dare these drivers be successful and win races! Some people would rather surround themselves with hate than enjoy the sport of racing. I will never understand it.
It’s like the so-called Jr. fans who are bailing on him and saying that he has “betrayed” them since he signed with HMS. Sorry, you were never really a Jr. fan then, you were an anti “fan” who hid behind the Jr. fan label. And Jr. doesn’t need fans like you. No one does.
Sam, sorry I had to respond to your comment. First, you are absolutely right. Second, to everyone who is posting, talking about how “bad” others are at the race track, I have to wonder…Are these same people as forgiving to others who aren’t the same color as them, or worship the same as them, or have the same sexual orientation, or are on the same political side, etc., etc., etc.? Cuz if all you “posters” can feel the same way about ALL the hate in the world, then maybe, just maybe, we have hope yet for the next generation. But if you HATE or BAD MOUTH any of the above examples, then you really aren’t any better than the beer-throwing idiots at the track. Just my opinion…think about it though….
I agree and disagree with some of the points being made. I donâ€™t see anything wrong with booing a driver you donâ€™t like during driver intros. I donâ€™t do it (at least not loud enough for anyone but me to hear), but I donâ€™t see the harm in booing during driver intros. NASCAR fans are, for the most part, a fiery bunch with a lot of passion for the sport, whether its for the drivers they love or the drivers they hate. I do think that, if your driver doesnâ€™t win, or a driver you despise does, why donâ€™t you just walk away? Donâ€™t stand there booing, cursing, screamingâ€¦just shake your head and walk away. Booing is a better alternative than the cursing, butâ€¦ Why canâ€™t you just wait until you get into your cars before cursing out the winner. There are kids all over the place, and they and other adults donâ€™t deserve to have their ears assaulted.
I do NOT understand people who cheer, whoop and holler when a driver they donâ€™t like is in an accident. Especially before even knowing how the driver in the cockpit is. Iâ€™ve seen it on TV and in person. A car goes spinning down the frontstretch and into the wall (whether its Gordon, Johnson, Busch, etc.) and 100â€™s of people stand up and start screaming and high-fiving each other. Itâ€™s one thing after the driver has gotten out of the car or at least put the window net down, but itâ€™s another when the car is still rolling out of control. But the truth is, also, that this doesnâ€™t just happen when itâ€™s someone not as popular with the fans. Iâ€™ve seen it happen many times when ANY car goes slamming against the wall. I understand itâ€™s the adrenaline and the excitement and all, but it really scares me that people can be that excited about watching a wreck. Maybe after the driver gets out of the car, because the truth is it can be an amazing sight (especially live) but itâ€™s frightening that people would be happily excited about it.
The throwing of any object on the track, at a car or at a driver at anytime is also a despicable thing to see, no matter who the driver is.
Those are my thoughts. (Sorry its so long)
It’s easy to understand all the “Haters.” You see them all around you. They are the roadragers, the child abusers, the bullies. The list is long. They are the multitudes of angry people that hate their boss/job, hate their ex-spouse, hate their present spouse, hate the person driving too slow in front of them, hate their parents, hate God, in general they just hate their life! All the ungrateful malcontents expressing their imagined (or real) Victimhood. As we all know it’s easier to blame someone else for your problems than to change your own life for the better, so maybe NASCAR has become the place that the losers can vent. If you can go and throw a beer can at Jeff Gordon’s car, maybe it’s better than going home and shooting your dog or something far worse.
Maybe what NASCAR actually stands for is, the “National Antidote for Society’s Crybabies’ Aggresion Release!”
As the “Good Book” says, “Contentment with Godliness is great gain!”
I agree with Sam and Steve. You guys are forgetting the sheer Essence of SPORTS and and being competitive. That’s why fans follow professional sports. It gives the average joe a chance to be competitive in a different sense by following a favorite team or driver or whatever. Therefore, you dislike your favorite team or drivers’ biggest competitor. I’m sure you have all experienced the competitive nature and feeling when your driver passes the leader in turn four to take the checkered flag!! And, how good is that feeling when your driver does the aformentioned, but the leader is his biggest foe?!?!
And when did Americans become so sensitive? This article actually makes me want to vomit. Your kids are going to learn more bad behaviour and such at school than they will going to one, maybe two races a year. Also, parents should know that ANY sporting event is going to be filled with loud, drunk, obnoxious, swearing, cursing, spitting sports fans. You bring at your OWN RISK!! If you don’t want your kids to see it, then leave them at home. Don’t ruin everyone else’s fun.
Amy isn’t saying that you are not allowed to dislike drivers – she is talking about the people who have a blind hatred for drivers, who throw crap at people, and have temper tantrums and yell vulgar things at people in the stands.
Dislike whoever you want to. Just have the sense and maturity to act in a reasonable manner – don’t throw stuff at people and don’t taunt other fans because they like a driver that you don’t. Have some respect for others. If you want to throw cans and debris in your own home at your TV – have at it.
Amen, Alex! this shouldn’t be about whether or not it’s okay to dislike a driver, it’s more about a wake-up to those who cannot act in a mature way. yell, curse, spit, but don’t throw things at the people competing! rivalries are a beautiful thing … if they weren’t, would you honestly watch? it’s great to have passion for cheering for a driver and, for some, a passion for booing another. i believe that NASCAR has the most die-hard and loyal fans out there. there’s no strikes or lockouts, just balls to the wall racing … the way it should be.
William T., good retorte. I really liked your thinking of “parents should know that ANY sporting event is going to be filled with loud, drunk, obnoxious, swearing, cursing, spitting sports fans. You bring at your OWN RISK!! If you donâ€™t want your kids to see it, then leave them at home.” I just have one question, are you talking about professional sporting events or the elementary/jr. or high school football/baseball/basketball/volleyball/soccer game? lol…. Enjoy the race on Sunday my fellow NASCAR nuts!!
hahahah. Highschool, ofcourse!!
Oh yeah…..I am not one of those beer can throwing, cursing fans. Just wanted to let you guys know that.
Frankly, I am, however, entertained by some of the outfits and such that these types of fans wear.!! :)
Why do people spend so much more energy on hate than on cheering? It’s at least partially a function of today’s NASCAR where you have A teams, B teams, and C teams. If you’re a fan of, say, Wood Brothers Racing or Kenny Wallace, or Robby Gordon, what do you have to cheer for? Top 20s? A top 10 is a rare thing indeed.
But NASCAR fans are passionate, and that passion has to go somewhere, and so of course it goes into hate of the A-list.
Interesting concept, Skip. I suppose there is a natural rift between the “haves” and the “have-nots.” However, I’ve been a diehard Kenny Wallace fan for years and harbor no animosity for other drivers simply because they have better equipment.
And I’m NOT saying that fans shouldn’t show their passion for their drivers and even for those they dislike. I’m just questioning the motivation of those who expend more money time, and energy on deriding the guy they don’t like than they do on cheering for the driver they DO like. I just wonder what that says about our society and what it teaches our children. If they can learn to hate a person they don’t even know for no reason than because someone says to, what’s to stop them from learning to hate a group of people, be it based on race, creed, gender, sexual orientation, etc., just because they learn by example. After all a lot of “haters” choose to call into quesion a driver’s orientation as a derogatory put down-in itself showing others it’s okay to be homophobic. Kind of scary if you ask me.
I’ve learned that every time I cheer for someone, they have a bad day, so I just learned if I cheer for someone, chances are they will blow up or wreck… LOL! Maybe I should become a Gordon, Junior and Johnson fan! THe one race I misses watching is the one Casey Mears won! Am I cursed or what?
Thanks Amy. That needed to be said.
To me, part of the fun of this sport is that, with 43 cars starting every race, there are plenty of heroes and villains.
I pull for Chevy drivers and donâ€™t care much for those four-letter-word-starts-with-â€œFâ€ cars. Donâ€™t like Dodges much. And I care even less for those rice-burners.
I was a Terry LaBonte fan and didnâ€™t like that cheatinâ€™ little beady-eyed weasel with that ratty moustache that drove that nasty black 3 car. Iâ€™ve never cared much for Tony Stewartâ€™s behavior on or off the race track. And there was a while there where I rolled my eyes at the sight of â€œMr. Excitementâ€ on the track. But those guys are colorful characters who help make Cup racing so much fun. And nothing was better than the sight of a nice, billowing cloud of white smoke behind a black or orange car.
But I’ve been to races and seen young men stand and give obscene gestures to driversâ€”with young children sitting a few rows back. And weâ€™ve all seen the beer-can throwers whose drunken stupidity endangers other fans more than the target of their rage.
Sometimes dislike may be justified. My respect for Ray Evernham has plummeted and I donâ€™t think much of Erin Crocker. I donâ€™t like what Brian France and his hyper-rich family are doing with our sport. I have no use at all for the drug users. But you can go to just about any message board and find plenty of raw hate directed at people whose main offense was just to win more often than that posterâ€™s favorite driver. Letting competitive fires spill over into hate is just plain wrong.
I think we all ought to step back and see if we canâ€™t apply the â€œWarren Wallaceâ€ rule. You know, â€œI didnâ€™t say I wouldnâ€™t go fishinâ€™ with the man.â€
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