Hamlin Snags Coca-Cola 600 Pole With Track Record Time
posted by Amy Henderson
Thursday May 23, 2013
Denny Hamlin shattered the track qualifying record at Charlotte Motor Speedway as he rocketed to the pole for Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600. Hamlin had a lap time of 27.604 seconds, or 195.624 miles per hour. Several drivers drove past the old record, set by Greg Biffle in 2012, but it was Hamlin who came out at the top of the heap and holds the new record. Kurt Busch will start on the outside of the front row. Matt Kenseth, Mark Martin, and Clint Bowyer round out the top 5. Kasey Kahne, Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, Jamie McMurray, and Ryan Newman hold down sixth through tenth places.
The pole is Hamlin’s second of 2013; he also started in front at Fontana before an injury in that race sidelined him for over a month. Hamlin says that his back feels “nearly 100%” and that it doesn’t cause him pain while driving. He added that winning the pole helped solidify for him that he is back at a competitive level, but he wants one more thing before he’ll be satisfied.
“I think winning would do that. I think ultimately getting the big trophy on Sunday is the validation that you’re truly back,” said Hamlin after his lap. “For me, it’s going to take some wins and some really good consistency throughout these summer months to put ourselves in position to have a chance at a championship. That’s what we’re here for. Even these small victories though give me that confidence that I’m still capable, and I’m still able to do the job at 100 percent like I should be. Any kind of confidence booster for me — it’s always a plus on Sunday.”
The Cup teams are next on track Saturday at 10 AM for the weekend’s second practice. Final practice for Sunday’s race is Saturday afternoon at one o’clock. The Coca-Cola 600 is scheduled to start at 6 PM on Sunday and will air on FOX.
Jimmie Johnson wins the Sprint All-Star race.....again
posted by Mike Neff
Sunday May 19, 2013
Five-time is now four-time when it comes to the Sprint All-Star race. Coming into Saturday night’s race, Johnson was tied with Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt for most wins in the annual event with three wins. Johnson bided his time, restarted the last segment in the second spot, dueled Kasey Kahne for two laps to secure the lead and pulled away to a convincing win. Joey Logano started the last segment in the seventh position, took advantage of a slip up by Kyle Busch on the start of the final segment, and ultimately came home in the runner-up spot. Kyle Busch rebounded from his slip up to muscle his way back to third. Kahne started the final segment on the pole but couldn’t hold off Johnson on the first few laps of the restart and ended up fourth. Kurt Busch won two segments, was the first on pit road for the money pit stop, but finished the event in fifth place.
Jimmie Johnson summed up his results in two words, “we’re lucky”. It was tongue in cheek but Johnson was poking fun at the people who continue to accuse the No. 48 of preferential treatment, fixed races, and a blind eye to cheating. Johnson has one of the highest winning percentages in NASCAR history and it comes from natural talent and chemistry with his crew. This race also now ties Johnson with Davey Allison as the only two drivers to win the race in back-to-back years.
Logano and Busch visited with the media after the race to speak about their runs. Logano was understandably upbeat about his second while Busch was quite dejected, having another All-Star race slip out of his grasp. Kahne spoke about the elephant in the room that is the length of the segments in the race during his post race availability on pit road. He noted that the inherent problem with the format is that the car is designed with downforce, on a track that is cool and has a bunch of grip. The only way to make the races exciting after the first couple of laps of racing would be to extend the segments to the
The first 20 lap segment was won by Kurt Busch. Segment two went to his brother Kyle. That segment win allowed Bruton Smith to breathe more easily since he put up a $1,000,000 bonus to anyone who won all four of the segments. Segment three also went to the younger Busch, while the fourth segment win was tallied in brother Kurt’ s account.
Kyle Busch wins the North Carolina Education Lottery 200
posted by Mike Neff
Friday May 17, 2013
‘Rowdy’ Busch was back in his familiar No. 51 truck at his favorite track on the Truck schedule. Busch led 80 laps and thought he should have led more but had a fuel issue on pit road that resulted in him having to battle back through the field. The race was slowed by eight cautions that helped him work his way back through the field. Busch beat Brendan Gaughan to the finish by .488 seconds, while Max Gresham chased them both to the line for his first top three finish of his Truck career. Matt Crafton came home in fourth place after having to battle through a couple of tire mishaps during the event. Ty Dillon rounded out the top 5 for his first finish that high this season.
Busch led the race three times for his 80 laps. Miguel Paludo was second on the laps led board with 33. Gaughan, Gresham and Dillon also scored bonus points for leading laps. There were two cautions in the first 72 laps of the race while 29 of the last 62 laps were completed under the yellow flag.
Jeb Burton started the race on the pole but did not lead a lap. He did however end the race as the Rookie of the Race for his 13th place finish. Matt Crafton leads Burton by 22 points in the season standings after five races this season.
Matt Kenseth Snatches Victory from the Jaws of Defeat at Darlington
posted by Mike Neff
Sunday May 12, 2013
Kyle Busch appeared to be headed for another weekend sweep after winning the Nationwide race at Darlington on Friday night. However, a funny thing happened as they were bringing out the dustpan. Matt Kenseth chased down the dominant car of the night, passed him with relative ease and then strolled away to a 3.165 second victory. Kenseth led the final 13 laps after Busch had held the point for 265 of the 354 laps leading up to Kenseth’s race winning pass. After Kenseth worked around Busch, the No. 18 slid rapidly backwards over the final eight laps to fall from second to sixth place.
Joe Gibbs Racing did manage a 1-2 finish after sweeping the podium in Friday night’s Nationwide tilt. Denny Hamlin, in his first full race back in the car since his vertebrae fracture at California, soldiered through the pain of his arms, neck and shoulders more than his recovered back to wrestle a second place finish away from the Lady in Black. Coming home in third was Jeff Gordon, who turned his 700th career start into a top 3 finish. Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick rounded out the top 5 in the Bojangles Southern 500.
Kurt Busch started the race on the pole and led the first 51 laps before coming to the pits for a green flag stop. After the stops cycled through Busch was back at the point for 18 more laps before his brother began his domination. The race went green for the first 302 laps save a seven lap caution stint from lap 125 to lap 131. The final 65 laps saw four more cautions that flew for accidents involving Regan Smith, Brad Keselowski, Casey Mears, Kurt Busch, Josh Wise, David Reutimann and Kasey Kahne.
The race saw four leaders including Jeff Gordon in addition to the Busch brothers and Kenseth. The win is Kenseth’s 27th of his career and breaks a tie between himself and his teammate Kyle Busch. The win is Kenseth’s third this season which is the most among all of the competitors in the Cup series. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was the Rookie of the Race. Jeff Gordon’s top 5 finish was his 300th of his career. He joins Richard Petty, David Pearson and Bobby Allison as the only four drivers in the history of the sport to accomplish such a feat.
Busch Dominates at Darlington as JGR Sets Nationwide Series Record
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday May 10, 2013
Kyle Busch dominated the VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 on Friday night en route to his 56th career Nationwide Series victory and fifth series win of 2013. Joe Gibbs Racing in general was the class of the field all night at Darlington Raceway, claiming four of the top 5 finishing spots, with only fourth-place Joey Logano keeping them from sweeping the top four spots. It was a historic night for JGR, as no team has ever before placed four cars in the top 5. Elliott Sadler finished second to Busch and Brian Vickers third, with Logano and Matt Kenseth rounding out the top 5.
Busch led 107 of 147 laps on the way to the win. Sadler was the best among the Nationwide Regulars, finishing second despite an early spin in Turn 2, and gained points on leader Regan Smith, who finished seventh. Kyle Larson continued to impress at the Lady in Black, posting a sixth-place finish in his first Darlington start as he runs for rookie honors. Sam Hornish, Jr., who remained second in points, finished eighth while Kasey Kahne and Justin Allgaier filled the top 10.
Smith now leads Nationwide Series points by 28 over Hornish. Sadler jumps two spots to third on his second-place run as Justin Allgaier fell one place to fourth. Vickers gained three sports and is now fifth, 49 behind Smith. Austin Dillon, Parker Kligerman, Brian Scott, Alex Bowman, and Kyle Larson round out the top 10.
Joe Gibbs Racing Penalties Reduced Following Appeal
posted by Summer Bedgood
Wednesday May 8, 2013
Joe Gibbs Racing had many of their penalties for the No. 20 team reduced during the appeal process on Wednesday.
Driver Matt Kenseth and owner Joe Gibbs had their points penalties reduced from 50 to 12 points.
Crew chief Jason Ratcliff’s suspension has also been dropped from seven races to one, though he will still be forced to pay the $200,000 fine.
Not all of the penalties were reduced, however. Toyota Racing’s manufacturer points penalty was increased from five points to seven.
All other penalties were dropped, including the suspension of Joe Gibbs’ owners license, the loss of bonus points for the Chase earned at Kansas Speedway, and the loss of eligibility into the Sprint Unlimited garnered from the pole at Kansas Speedway.
JGR has accepted the penalties and will not appeal further.
Following a dominant win at Kansas Speedway a few weeks ago, Kenseth’s car failed post-race inspection when it was found that a connecting rod was 2.7 grams below the minimum weight. Toyota Racing Development accepted the blame for the incident.
The reduction moves Kenseth up to fourth in points, 66 points behind leader Jimmie Johnson.
JGR has not announced who will replace Ratcliff this weekend in Darlington.
The appeal was heard by Mark Arute, Dennis McGlynn, and Jack Housby.
NASCAR cannot appeal the revised penalties.
Penske Has Suspensions Reduced On Appeal
posted by Thomas Bowles
Wednesday May 8, 2013
Roger Penske’s team got some relief Tuesday from NASCAR’s Chief Appellate Officer John Middlebrook, as he chose to reduce penalties assessed to that organization at Texas Motor Speedway in early April. Middlebrook, after hearing the evidence from both sides Tuesday chose to reduce all suspensions in the case from six to two weeks, plus NASCAR’s All-Star Race on May 18th. That means the final consequences for both teams are the following:
No. 2 car
No. 22 car
Middlebrook’s official statement was short, simply stating, “After looking at all the facts, data, and interpretations from the rule book, I have decided to uphold the original fines and points penalties. However, I have decided to reduce the suspensions of the seven team members involved from six points races and the All-Star race to two points races and the All-Star Race.” However, it seemed both sides, after presenting their cases were far more pleased with how the case was handled during this portion of the appeal.
“We were able to talk about areas we worked in,” said Roger Penske, referring to the “gray area” of the NASCAR rulebook officials ultimately felt stepped over the line. “I’m very happy with the outcome. This sport has been built on innovation. All of us have tried to innovate in areas not defined in the rulebook. We were in that area.”
In conversations with the parties involved, it was clear the controversy surrounded parts designed to increase the rear-end angle at the back of both cars. In past years, with innovation limited through the Car of Tomorrow templates teams have played around with suspension systems designed to make the rear end of the car easier to “move.” The more the car skews in the corner, the easier it can be to handle and gain extra speed.
However, NASCAR had made rules designed to curb those types of innovations this year and made the determination Penske parts to build the rear suspension were unapproved. Why they had gone undetected in previous inspections was never addressed, along with claims someone else in the garage had alerted officials to possible inappropriate car construction. One thing Penske did admit, though is had this decision been issued by the initial appeals panel, he would not have pressed his luck with Middlebrook.
“All of us,” he said. “Have lost points for certain infractions over the years. The key thing is to have people back at the racetrack operating in full control.”
The end results leave Logano 18th in points, 146 behind championship leader Jimmie Johnson and 43 outside a Chase position. Keselowski is far more stable; fifth in points, he’s 69 behind and 45 ahead of 11th-place Matt Kenseth. Neither of the Penske cars have won a race this season.
“Moved on from last few weeks,” Keselowski tweeted Wednesday morning. “And ready to focus on @TooToughToTame (Darlington Raceway).”
The next round of NASCAR penalty appeals, focusing on Joe Gibbs Racing and Matt Kenseth will be heard on Wednesday morning.
Connect with Tom!
Penske Racing LOSES Penalty Case, Will Appeal To NSCRC John Middlebrook
posted by Thomas Bowles
Wednesday May 1, 2013
A three-member panel Wednesday unanimously upheld penalties assessed to Penske Racing after pre-race inspection at Texas Motor Speedway. Comprised of Pocono President Brandon Igdalsky, Bowman-Gray President Dale Pinilis and former NASCAR VP Paul Brooks, the trio determined the sanctioning body’s evidence was enough to “convict” Penske to the tune of points lost, suspensions given and $200,000 in fines.
Roger Penske, in response has pledged to send a final appeal to National Stock Car Racing Commissioner John Middlebrook. That hearing will occur Tuesday, May 7th at NASCAR’s Research and Development Center. Here’s a quick list of what penalties are pending (everything but the points deductions will be deferred, pending Middlebrook’s approval until after the final appeal):
No. 2 team
No. 22 team
NASCAR’s representation included Sprint Cup Director John Darby but not Vice President Robin Pemberton, who was whisked away to Florida on jury duty. Owner Roger Penske was in attendance to defend the allegations along with Team Manager Travis Geisler, Tim Cindric, Walt Czarnecki, Joey Logano’s crew chief Todd Gordon along with several other key principles.
UPDATE: The National Stock Car Racing Commission issued a brief statement, reviewing the penalties and then explaining the following.
“Upon hearing the testimony and carefully reviewing the facts, it was a unanimous decision by the National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel to uphold the original penalties assessed by NASCAR.”
“The Appellants have the right under Section 15 of the rule book to appeal this decision to the National Stock Car Racing Chief Appellate Officer.”
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Kyle Busch Wins Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown
posted by Thomas Bowles
Friday April 26, 2013
Who says Joe Gibbs Racing teammates don’t get along? Kyle Busch is certainly receiving gifts, from Denny Hamlin in the form of shiny trophies from winning the latter’s annual charity event. Rowdy was romping through the field again at Richmond Thursday night, taking control at the race’s midpoint and cruising during the latter stages to win the Showdown for the third time in the past six years. In a race that benefits the Denny Hamlin Foundation, created to help those with cystic fibrosis Busch had his late model hitting on all cyilnders down the stretch. Pulling away from fellow Cup driver David Ragan, in the final segment of the 75-lap race the outcome was simply never in doubt following a 5-minute break for pit stops prior to Lap 47. Ben Rhodes, Ronnie Bassett, Jr., and Garrett Campbell rounded out the top-5 finishers.
Other Cup drivers, including defending race champion Tony Stewart were in the field but never a factor up front. Smoke, actually extending his slumping start to 2013 into this race got wrecked before the halfway point and wound up 28th. Matt Kenseth, still distraught after a midweek penalty virtually negated his win at Kansas was never truly competitive, either; he finished 22nd.
Also on Thursday night, African-American driver Ryan Gifford won the first K&N Pro Series East race of his young career. Surviving a five-lap shootout, following a red flag he cruised home over Brandon Gdovic.
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Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Penalized As Engine Fails Kansas Post-Race Inspection
posted by Thomas Bowles
Wednesday April 24, 2013
Until the end of time, Matt Kenseth can say he crossed the finish line first at Kansas Sunday. NASCAR Record Books will say the same. But after a harsh series of penalties announced on Wednesday, should they stand that’s about the only thing Kenseth can hang his hat on after a successful weekend turned sour.
According to multiple reports, officials at the NASCAR R & D Center in North Carolina discovered a connecting rod on Kenseth’s engine, brought in for Kansas post-race inspection weighed three grams less than the minimum weight of 525g. The consequences, announced today are crippling for both driver and team. Kenseth, along with car owner Joe Gibbs have been docked 50 driver and owner points, actually reducing their overall totals heading into Kansas even though the No. 20 car won the race. That lost chunk of points drops Kenseth from eighth to 14th in the standings. More importantly, the win “won’t count” for either bonus points in the Chase or determine postseason eligibility; that means the driver, now in “Wild Card” position is considered to have one win so far this season instead of two.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg on these consequences. Crew chief Jason Radcliffe, fined $200,000 based on the infraction has also been suspended for the next six Sprint Cup points events, along with the All-Star Race. Toyota, whose TRD engine department ultimately supplies the JGR powerplants has had five points deducted from its total in the manufacturer’s championship. And finally, Joe Gibbs himself, already docked 50 owner points has had his license suspended by NASCAR, which means he’s ineligible to accrue owner points for the No. 20 until the next six Sprint Cup Series points races are completed.
Gibbs, NASCAR has clarified will still be able to travel to the racetrack despite a suspended license. In a tersely worded statement, the owner says he’ll appeal the ruling, which violated three parts of the series rulebook. The one most pertinent is Section 20-5.5.3(E) which states only magnetic steel connecting rods, with a minimum weight of 525.0 grams will be permitted. Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4J, which gives officials the right to penalize for parts they claim do not conform to NASCAR rules were also cited in the sport’s official release.
Toyota Racing Development’s Lee White, in a statement released early this afternoon took responsibility for the violation.
During NASCAR’s routine post-race tear down of Matt Kenseth’s race-winning car and engine from Kansas Speedway,” he stated, “One of our engine connecting rods weighed in approximately three grams under the legal minimum weight of 525 grams. None of the other seven connecting rods were found to be under the minimum weight. We take full responsibility for this issue with the engine used by the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) team this past Sunday in Kansas — JGR is not involved in the process of selecting parts or assembling the Cup Series engines. It was a simple oversight on TRD’s part and there was no intent to deceive, or to gain any type of competitive advantage. Toyota is a company that was built on integrity, and that remains one of the guiding principles of the company. The goal of TRD has always been — and will continue to be — to build high-performance engines that are reliable, durable and powerful, and within the guidelines established by NASCAR.”
Kenseth, who has led 482 laps this season, two higher than his total last year has been one of the strongest competitiors on the Sprint Cup track in 2013. His engines have also passed several previous inspections.
Find tons of cheap tickets to 2012 speedway races like Talladega NASCAR schedule, Brickyard 400 at Indy Motor Speedway, Coca Cola 600 Charlotte Motor Speedway tickets plus the full 2012 Monster Jam schedule
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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.
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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€
Recent articles from Amy Henderson:
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Want to know more about Amy or see an archive of all of her articles? Check out her bio page for more information.