The Frontstretch: If I Ruled the (NASCAR) World: Chicagoland by Becca Gladden -- Wednesday July 13, 2005

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If I Ruled the (NASCAR) World: Chicagoland

Becca Gladden · Wednesday July 13, 2005


Editor’s Note: We’re proud to introduce our newest columnist: Becca Gladden! She comes to us from Insider Racing News, and will be writing a weekly column on Wednesdays…feel free to comment below and welcome her to our team!

If I ruled the NASCAR world, I would be a benevolent dictator, issuing edicts for the good of all who reside in my racing realm.

These would be my decrees for the week of July 10 – July 17, 2005 :

  • NBC Commentator Bill Weber would stop asking lame questions like, “Will the Tony Awards continue today?” in reference to Tony Stewart’s two-race win streak.
  • Speaking of Tony Stewart, I would ask him to stop referring to himself in the plural all the time. You rarely hear Tony say “I” or “me” – it’s always “us” or “we.” Maybe this explains why people accuse him of having multiple personalities.
  • I know the sports world doesn’t exist in a vacuum, but the numerous references to the terrorist attacks in London and the pending hurricane were starting to be a real downer. I would ask the broadcasters to bear in mind that many people turn to diversions like NASCAR for temporary relief from real-life concerns.
  • And while it was nice to hear all the concern about Hurricane Dennis, but I would ask Jimmie Johnson and Tony Stewart to be a little less obvious in capitalizing on the situation with back-to-back sponsor plugs, even if the motive in this case was altruistic.
  • I would instruct the Royal Chef to insure that “Biffleberries” are never included on the palace menu.
  • I would instruct all drivers to remember Greg Biffle’s simple reason for returning to his hometown for the 4th of July: “I don’t want to forget where I came from.”
  • I would love to ask Allen Bestwick if it was a Freudian slip when he commented that Jeff Gordon’s singing had been “under the weather” lately.
  • I would advise NBC to take measures to avoid such very awkward TV moments as occurred when Jamie McMurray walked away from Allen Bestwick seconds before his interview was to start.
  • Note to Benny Parsons: Even when someone in the booth makes a mistake, it’s rather unprofessional to yell, “Yeah, you big dummy!” on national TV.
  • I would insist that all future UPS deliveries to my palace are made in Dale Jarrett’s #88 car – preferably with DJ driving.
  • This week’s Commissioner Appointment: A Commissioner of Cups, to devise a safer cup for drivers so that they don’t lose a half-second per lap when their drink spills at their feet while going 180 miles an hour going into turn one.
  • Two words for New Hampshire: Better tires!
  • The following phrase, courtesy of Wally Dallenbach, is banned from my kingdom forever: “You have to listen to your butt!” Even if it is good advice, that’s just wrong.
  • I would also mention to BP how strange it sounds when commenting on a team’s two-tire pit strategy: “Well that’s good – he’s trying to win.” Ya’ think?
  • Effective immediately, I would order a turnaround of fortune for the #24 team. Love him or hate him, the Chase for the Championship will be more fun with Jeff Gordon in the running at the end.
  • I would order all drivers to listen to a tape of Matt Kenseth’s good-sportsmanship in taking the loss like a man, despite having the class of the field all day.
  • And finally … how fun was it to watch Tony Stewart and Dale Earnhardt Jr. win the past two weeks? Stewart was so excited he climbed a 20-foot fence at Daytona and Junior, choked with emotion, could barely speak in Victory Lane. While I cannot mandate a different race winner each week just to keep things fresh, I would require that level of genuine passion from all victors. It’s encouraging to see that winning still matters, in an era when the phrase “big-picture racing” is more popular than ever.

Until next week, I remain your Benevolent Dictator…


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Today on the Frontstretch:
Championship Caliber? What Does That Even Mean?
Mirror Driving: Winning Vs. Points, Needing a Boost, and The Lady’s Last Dance?
Nuts for Nationwide: The Curious Case of Elliott Sadler
Happiness Is…Arrogance, Less, Next, and the Outdoors
Frontstretch Foto Funnies: It’s Not Gonna Fit…


©2000 - 2008 Becca Gladden and Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!

Desmond Hobson
07/14/2005 03:41 PM
Welcome, Becca! I remember you from the other site and I am surprised that you have decided to take this new direction. Then again, that’s probably why you left the other site.
Charlie D.
07/15/2005 08:01 AM
With all due respect!

The first thing I would do is what really matters in NASCAR.

First and foremost; I would banish forever the Frances to a tiny island where the only racing was the IROC series.

I would crush the common templates and fashion them into the next championship trophy.

I would bring back factory sheet metal, where what you see running on the track, for the most part you could buy at a dealership, at least in the way of looks.

Though I would keep control of engine rules, I would give free reign to chassis modifications.

I would spend the money and have “real time” scoring.

I would dictate that if a damaged car can not be fixed on pit road then the vehicle would have to pull from the race.

I would have officials positioned all around the track making sure that the debris on the track could actually cause damage and if concluded that it is in fact dangerous, there would be no “Lucky Dog” in that event.

I would declare the Busch series a Buschwacker free zone. If you run the full cup series you are in fact banned from participating in a lower sanctioned event.

I would mandate that unless courted by a region, that no races or tracks be built and forced upon an area and their people. Furthermore, no race tracks would be considered for competition that needs to be convoyed and protected in any shape or form.

As it is written, as is the law!
07/18/2005 07:43 PM
Welcome to the FRONTSTRETCH! As one of the “Original” writers it is great to have another talented writer on our site! Now to get you on MIRROR DRIVING…that is the true test around here!


Becca Gladden is no longer a contributor to the Frontstretch, but you can see all her past articles on herbiography and archive page.