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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I was reading through some old (and not-so-old) racing columns and found one that I wrote last year that got me thinking. Actually, it was the comments that I got that got me thinking. I wrote about some of the issues that were making NASCAR less than popular with the fans. You can read about them here if you really want to. But it isn’t necessary.
What really piqued my interest was a comment that, in a nutshell, blamed about 95% of the problems in NASCAR these days on Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Apparently, NASCAR lets Junior run rampant in the garage and on the track, giving him cautions for the asking and, more or less, fixing the races for his benefit or for any other outcome they would like to have.
OK, let me get this off my chest: the NASCAR universe doesn’t revolve around Junior. That’s not a knock on the most popular driver. It’s merely an observation about two factions of fans that I’ve encountered in recent years—those that love Junior, and those that hate him. Love him, and he’s all that and a bag of chips—the greatest driver on the circuit who can do no wrong and is continually shafted by the media and the officials when he should obviously be winning every week. Hate him, and he’s overrated with an inflated ego and NASCAR bends over backwards to accommodate his obviously mediocre talent, and, on top of all that, the fans who love him are obnoxious.
Even NASCAR got in on the “blame Junior” act last year, insinuating in a statement that TV ratings would be higher if Junior was running better. Well, gee, if you listen to the detractors, they did all they could to help the guy—throwing phantom debris cautions, letting Junior and only Junior pass below the yellow line on the plate tracks, making prank phone calls to Jimmie Johnson telling him the race was cancelled… It wouldn’t have surprised me at times to see accusations of little green men fixing the weather to get the guy a rain win.
Poor guy-it must be an awful lot of pressure to be told by one group of fans that the fate of NASCAR rests on your shoulders and by another that the fate of everything rests on your shoulders. It must be terrible to know that people are showering your competition with beer cans because they beat you. Or to hear that NASCAR is fixing races for you—as if that’s the only way you could get a win. You can’t win some days!
Based solely on numbers, Junior is certainly in the top tier of drivers today—17 points wins is nothing to scoff at, certainly better than mediocre, but it’s also hard to argue that he’s the best when both Tony Stewart and Jimmie Johnson, both of whom came on the scene around the same time, have double that number (Stewart is one shy of that). Have the phantom cautions over the years helped Earnhardt? Sure, but they have also helped other drivers. Kyle Busch could vouch for Junior not being the only guy to sneak in a pass below the line at Talladega. Junior hasn’t won a points race this year and the ratings have rebounded over last fall. Contrary to popular belief, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson aren’t having a slump this year because Junior is getting all the good stuff at Hendrick Motorsports.
Now, don’t go thinking I dislike Junior because I said it’s not all about him. Nothing could be further from the truth. I’ve liked Junior since day one because he’s a class act who would probably be fun to hang out with for a day. Heck, the guy is my neighbor. But I’m not looking at him as a driver or as a person through rose-colored glasses, either. He’s not perfect, and he shouldn’t have to be.
NASCAR has never been about one guy. There are guys that are popular and others that are kind of just there, but all of them have their fans and detractors. Most other drivers just aren’t this polarizing, nor their fans and those that dislike them such zealots. Junior, like every driver on the track every week, has a lot to bring to the table, and sometimes, he screws up. He’s neither lone hero nor archvillain.
Pinning NASCAR’s hopes, or their problems, on one driver, no matter how popular, is a disservice. It’s also short-sighted and narrow-minded. But most of all, putting all that on one man’s shoulders in unfair—unfair to Earnhardt and to his competitors. He’s a shining star in the NASCAR universe, but he’s not the center of it.
©2000 - 2008 Amy Henderson and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
13 NASCAR races, 13 straight weeks with a frontstretch.com article about Dale Junior. Can you come up with someone else to talk about, please? I gotta figure Jeff Gordon or Jimmie Johnson or Tony Stewart or even Kyle Petty are doing something interesting this week. I’ve learned all but what color Dale’s toothbrush is from this website. Lets talk about someone else for a change, please.
Don’t Worry Kevin. Im a Jr fan, But in a year, you’ll have Lagano and Busch to be sick of, Unless youre one of those shrub lovers!
Could you please, please, get your facts straight????
At the Talladega race you mentioned where Jr.
“WON”, NA$CAR admitted after the race they did not penalize Jr. because they were afraid of the fan reactions if they took the win away!
NA$CAR themselves said they awarded the win ONLY because they did not want a riot in the stands if they black-flagged Jr.!!
Spin it the way you want!
But the truth will prevail!
Jr. is nothing but a second rate driver given the best equipment because of his name! Not his talent!
Top ten relevent cup drivers in the 21st century so far are 1) Jeff Gordon 2) Jimmy Johnson 3) Tony Stewart 4) Matt Kenseth 5) Kurt Bush 6) Dale jr. 7) Ryan Newman 8) Kevin Harvick 9) Greg Biffle 10) Kasey Kahne. HONORABLE MENTION: Jeff Burton,Kyle Bush,Carl Edwards,Denny Hamlin and Elliot Sadler.
Dale Junior is overrated by his fans but much more underrated by his detractors. The guy lost a championships by a couple of dozen points, has finished in the top 5 how many times, and has 17 wins.
While I agree that his fans are often obnoxious, I am far more turned off by those who hate him. What is there to hate about the guy? He is honest, he usually drives clean, and he admits to his mistakes.
Wow, what a terrible human being.
If Douglas truly believes Nascar fixed a race for Junior and admitted it, failed to penalize Junior when it should have and admitted it, then I have to wonder why he’s still watching such a farce. No self-respecting fan would watch if he truly believed it. The better Junior does, the more haters that appear to comment on articles about him and the more outrageous their claims become. It’s a lot of fun for his fans to watch so many go off the deep end and completely lose all common sense just because someone wrote a Junior article. People tend not to waste their hate on talentless flacks who don’t deserve the attention. So hate away. Those obnoxious fans truly live for it, and those less obnoxious fans find it endlessly amusing, too.
Dale Jr. is highly overrated. If his name was something such as “Dale Jones, Jr.”, then he would be nothing but some second-rate driver along the lines of some of these journeyman drivers in NASCAR.
Nice to see others are tired of hearing/ reading about Jr. I agree he is good drive but not one of the best. Doesn’t matter what equipment he has, he will never be the driver his father was.
What is there to not like about Dale Jr? Mostly its the way his fans hold him up on a pedestal and think he can do no wrong. They actually think the other drivers should move over and let him win every race. Just because of his name. His fans have ruined him for me. And the media pays him way too much attention for someone who hasnt won in two+ years. Jeff Burton didnt get this much attention when he had his five year long winless streak. And when he finally won, he was quickly forgotton about the next week. Also, half of Dale’s wins have come on the same three tracks. That’s not what I look for in a well-rounded driver. I have a huge list but I’ll end with this one, his deal over his car number. Its not his number, it belongs to the team owner. Rick Hendrick had to give up one of his long time car numbers to accomodate Dale. Did Casey Mears whine and complain about getting the #25 or now the #5 when he joined the team? Nope, he accepted what he was given and appreciated the opportunity. Dale threw a temper tantrum and cried that his step-mom wouldnt give him the #8. And again, his fans were making nasty comments and even death threats to her about it. I lost even more respect for him after that last year.
Jack, Dale has finished in the top 5 in points 3 times in 8 years. And the closest he’s finished was 5th in 2004, 138 points back. In 2006 it was another 5th, 147 points back. In 2003, he was 3rd in points, but 207 back. That’s a lot more than a couple dozen.
Of course NASCAR lets JR. Get away with things that noone else would be able to get away with. Just look at last week and how they reversed the penalty about endangering the safety workers. That was a huge load of B.S. right there. That would not have happened for anyone else.
Hey “Stormin”!! And that’s exactly what happened, and a day later NA$CAR fessed up as to why Jr. was not penalized!
As for me, I am what could be termed the “core fan”, a left over from many years ago!
And it breaks my heart that NA$CAR is changing the sport forever! And not for the better!
Oh sure, I could simply abandon everything and turn my back! But, maybe, just maybe, the sport is worth fighting for!
I know everything is not fair in any sport! How many times did MJ get away with things in the NBA just because he was the biggest draw? I just want to keep the sport of “Stock Car Racing” as honest as one person can!
A large responsibility, but someone has to do it!
Can you honestly say that you will continue to support NA$CAR even though the winner is not really the winner?
All Dale, Jr? Give me a break. Isn’t everyone talking about Kyle Bush? If Jr raced like Kyle, everyone would be in a snit. Emergency workers? Ha! Ha! I may be wrong, but on TV the incident they were talking about & showing was Jr coming down pit road and passing a “blower”. Didn’t see any safety workers anywhere around the blower. Another thing, Sr made Jr work for his opportunity in the sport. How many drivers can actually say that today? You shouldn’t hate Jr because of his fans…that would be akin to hating a school teacher because you didn’t like the students in her class.
Kyle Busch may not be your favorite driver, but a driver he is. The word driver says it all, it’s the man on the track sitting behind the steering wheel with his right foot on the floor. It´s not about how he looks or what he says before or after the race. Heck he could a deaf mute or a motor mouth it doesn’t matter. He could be a pretty boy or uglier than sin. Again it doesn’t matter. He could be born with a silver spoon or dirt poor, doesn’t matter. Kyle Busch has two things rarely found in today’s competitors which I admire. First he has The Fire in the Gut and second he has No time for Political Correctness.
He comes to win. His view is other drivers can concern themselves with top 5´s, top 10´s or selling T-shirts. When you see Kyle Busch drive you cannot help but remember drivers like Curtis Turner, Junior Johnson, Tim Richmond and yes even Dale Earnhardt Sr.
Kyle Busch is a throw back to the old days when driving was the only thing important. Not sponsorships. I doubt any sponsors would have been very impressed with Curtis Turner or Junior Johnson. But like Busch they were drivers and only drivers not corporate salesmen.
Just before he retired as a car owner I recall Junior Johnson’s expressing his disgust that he no longer could he select the best driver available, but a driver that the sponsor would approve. It goes to show what a sorry state of affairs NASCAR has arrived at. However, after reading many responses/comments here at Frontstretch, Its obvious many NASCAR followers cannot see that. So many are concerned with image, and/or popularity and not raw talent. If other things matter to you, aside from on the track driving abilities, then maybe you should switch channels from NASCAR to American Idol.
Does anyone really think Rick Hendrick hired Junior solely for his racing abilities? Remember Rick Hendrick is a businessman that owns racing teams. Hendricks first thoughts are money and profitability. Believe me a driver’s talent is a distant second.
Junior is a business man’s dream. It’s pretty simple, Junior will bring in the money and Kyle Busch will bring back the trophy or the steering wheel. If you are a businessman then go with Junior and the dollar but if you are a real racing fan you have to go with the driver who ever that may be.
I was thinking the other day about the direction of the sport. The drivers we have, where it’s going, and I was thinking about Dale Jr. I’m not a fan of his, but I don’t dislike him either. I think the problem is, there are very few fans in this range. You like him, or you don’t, but there aren’t many middle ground fans. Me personally, I don’t belive this day in age NASCAR could really say “hey, we fudged a race for a driver” and be okay with that. If that’s how you interpreted that, fine, but I’d love to see them saying they gave him something so the fans wouldn’t be upset. The guy has won races, finished high in the points, and did it with mediocre equipment. Just remember this for all you Dale Jr Haters: Dale Jr has never once claimed to be the driver his dad was. I don’t think that’s what his mentality is. And for all you Dale Jr fans: He’s a good driver, who has what it takes to win but he’s not the best out there.
Side Note: Someone above wrote something about Premier drivers, etc, and didn’t list Jr but put down Elliott Sadler? Not hating on Sadler, but he’s not a “premier” driver (or whatever you said) or near the driver Jr is.
Douglas, can you please somehow have some proof that Jr. passed under the yellow line to gain position at Dega? I have been a fan of NASCAR for many years, and I have seen more Fathers and sons in NASCAR than you can imagine. I think all this comes down to, is just jealousy. For all those who say Jr is over8ted, and his fans is what makes him so bad. Please listen to yourselves?
I guess in my way of thinking if your a fan and follow NA$CAR each and every race, then you would automatically know what happened at Talladega that year. NA$CAR published a statement a day later stating why they did not penalize Jr. for that infraction! It was more a matter of crowd control and they did not want the responsibility for the safety of all the innocent fans that would have been caught in the middle of flying debris and such from Jr. Nation!
If you want more information, please do the research!
Douglas, I’m going to go ahead and point ol’ Timmie in the right direction for the story. Most Jr. fans won’t do the research to find proof that Mr. Do No Wrong actually did wrong. So Timmie, here’s an address that will get you started on the road to realizing that Jr. does get special treatment. Copy and paste this, which is just one of many out there:
Hey “Ron”, big thanks.
My problem is I only have dial up available to me so doing research for past articles is really slow and cumbersome for me.
But I do think poor ole’ Timmie is just a part time fair weather fan that does not understand the methods NA$CAR uses to select winners!
MMM, does Mark Martin getting cheated out of a win at Daytona ring a bell? Wonder where that yellow flag went?
Thanks so much for the link Ron. Plus thank you too, Douglas for your reply. However here it would be hard to believe that only Dale Jr. has won a race for so called rules. I have seen quite a few win races with two left front tires on the front of their cars to give them momentum, and I knew that Dale Jr. spun out to keep from getting lapped one time. While I know he nor any other drivers are perfect. This one I did not know. While I know that all the drinking fans in the stands were not only Jr fans that were arrested at Talladega that threw things, only to see about 9 arrested. Some were Jimmie Johnson,Dale Jr., and Tony Stewart Fans, or at least had on their shits, hats or both. Now when people go just for that reason I do not even consider those fans at all. They were barred from Talladega, plus Darlington, which was the very next week turned them down as coming to there track. I do know they were in handcuffs, but sure can’t tell you how long they spent in jail. We can go back to the days of NASCAR, many drivers at one time or another have gotten a very raw deal. Yester year before all the media,you knew when you attended. Talking racing go back and check the Yellow Banana, that Jr. Johnson came up with and Fred Lorenzen drove. Wow how we needed the media back then for sure. Good going guys, and thanks again.
Why do you guys keep blaming Jr for the reporters choosing to write about him. As for nascar cheating for him; lets look at last year whwn they called cautions and race for Gordon and Johnson. Now lets be fair with our facts. Jr may not be the best driver but he is the most popular. As for him getting the best equiptment because of his name , have we forgot about his season last year???????????? And do you really think he gets better than Gordon and Johnson!!!!!!!!! Lets be fair and leave Jr alone. He can not control the reports nor the fans
Hey Timmie! We appreciate the note!
Like anything, guess we pick out when Jr. benefits! Although I do believe I try to be neutral as I like the racing, well, used to like it anyway, more than a single driver!
If we take the 2003 spring Talladega race as an example, what do you think would have happened if a Robby Gordon was the one that put his four wheels over the line and passed a car?
That pretty much sums up how I feel about NA$CAR! No such thing as “unbiased” application of the rules! Whatever rule they may have for any given weekend anyway!
BUT!! Not mentioned in that article was the fact that on Monday following the race, NA$CAR themselves said that they would not penalize Jr. at that point because of the crowd reaction if the win, or first place, was taken away from Jr.!
So in essence, the rowdy Jr. Nation supplied Jr. the win!
Wonder if Jr. even said thank you!
Douglas is a toad. NASCAR never said anything like that. Junior won the race fair and square. They DID, however, give a race to Jeff Gordon by running the last 9 laps under caution, because they felt it would be “too dangerous” to throw the green, and let the race finish under green. Douglas must have watched a race on the fairy channel and dreamed this one up.
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