NASCAR Changes Qualifying Format
posted by Summer Bedgood
Tuesday March 11, 2014
Following safety concerns regarding NASCAR’s new qualifying format, the sanctioning body is introducing some changes in preparation for this weekend’s race at Bristol Motor Speedway. According to the Associated Press, NASCAR is banning teams from cool-down laps after their qualifying attempts, but will instead be allowed to hook up cool-down units to the engine through hood flaps.
Late Tuesday afternoon, a release from NASCAR fully detailed the changes. Teams will be allowed a single cool down unit to be connected through the right or left side hood flap, however the hood must remain closed. Additionally, two crew members will be allowed over the wall while cooling down.
“The qualifying is new to all of us and as we have said over the past several weeks, we are looking at it from all aspects,” said Robin Pemberton, vice president of competition and racing development. “Following discussions, both internally and with others in the garage area, we moved quickly to make a few revisions that will be effective starting with our two national series events at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. We believe this will only enhance and improve what has demonstrated to be an exciting form of qualifying for our fans, competitors and others involved with the sport. Moving forward we will continue to look at it and address anything else that we may need to as the season unfolds.”
The move comes after three weeks of NASCAR’s new knockout qualifying system, where multiple cars are allowed to make qualifying attempts at the same time instead of the traditional one-car-at-a-time procedure. Drivers and teams had complained that the new rules didn’t allow them to cool their engines down on pit road, and the cool-down laps caused a dangerous situation with slower cars staying on the track at the same time that other cars were running by them at much higher speeds.
The rule will begin this weekend in Bristol, a track that has a much narrower racing surface than Daytona, Phoenix, and Las Vegas.
Kurt Busch to Attempt The Indianapolis-Charlotte Double
posted by Phil Allaway
Tuesday March 4, 2014
Andretti Autosport announced this morning that Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet in the Sprint Cup Series, will attempt the Indianapolis 500 in a fifth entry for the IndyCar Series team. Once the Indianapolis 500 is completed, Busch will fly from Indianapolis to Charlotte, jump in his No. 41 Chevrolet and compete in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Busch considers the opportunity to do the double as an old-school throwback moment.
“This is really to challenge myself within motorsports,” Busch said in Andretti Autosport’s press release. “Perhaps I am a bit of an old-school racer; a throwback, I guess. I enjoyed the era of drivers racing different cars and testing themselves in other series. It is tough to do now for a variety of factors, but when the opportunity is there, I want to do it. While NASCAR is my home, I have been fortunate to compete in Pro Stock on the NHRA circuit a number of years ago and test a V8 Supercar. This opportunity was a talk with Michael [Andretti] over dinner one night, a “What if,” and now it’s becoming a reality for me to drive in the Indy 500 with Andretti Autosport. It’s literally a dream come true. To go to the famous Brickyard with the iconic Andretti name, it doesn’t get much cooler or better than that.”
Busch will be doing the Indianapolis-Charlotte double as a Memorial Day mission to men and women serving in the U.S. Military via the Armed Forces Foundation. Fans can contribute to the cause by texting AFF to 50555 to donate $10.
Busch, who has never raced an IndyCar, passed Rookie Orientation at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway last year during a test session. At the time, Busch was more or less testing the Dallara DW12 for fun.
Busch will be the fourth driver to attempt the Indianapolis-Charlotte double. John Andretti was the first driver to attempt it in 1994. After finishing four laps down in tenth in Indianapolis, Andretti crashed and had engine problems in the 600. Robby Gordon has attempted the double five times, most recently in 2004. However, Gordon failed to make it to Charlotte on time and did not start the 600 in 2000 (P.J. Jones started Gordon’s No. 13 Ford in that instance). Finally, Tony Stewart has attempted the double twice (most recently in 2001) and is the only driver to ever complete all 1100 miles. Neither of the three drivers has won either leg of the double. The best finishes are Stewart and Gordon’s sixth-place finishes at the Indianapolis 500 (although Gordon’s came in 2000, the year he didn’t make it to Charlotte in time to start the Coca-Cola 600), and Stewart’s fourth-place finish in the 2001 Coca-Cola 600.
Danica Patrick, Justin Allgaier Talk About Phoenix Incident
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Tuesday March 4, 2014
A disappointing start to the year for Danica Patrick won’t include continued conflict. Patrick met with rookie Justin Allgaier Sunday, shortly after the Phoenix Cup race after a wreck ruined both drivers’ days. Patrick, who was critical of the No. 51 car on the radio, claiming Allgaier was “driving all over the track” appeared receptive to a conversation that quickly settled differences over what will be a long season.
“She was just upset because she got involved in the crash that we had,’’ said Allgaier to the Motor Racing Network. “She says she’s been through this and that she felt like I needed to settle down at that point. I explained my position on why everything happened. I think she understood where I was coming from. It doesn’t fix either one of our racecars. It doesn’t fix either one of our days. Unfortunately, we were both having pretty decent days.’’
Allgaier wound up 30th due to the incident while Patrick was 36th. The incident, which was caused by Allgaier’s spin also involved the No. 32 team and Travis Kvapil, which wound up 38th after sustaining heavy damage.
Camping World Close to Extending Title Sponsorship of NCWTS
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Tuesday March 4, 2014
Marcus Lemonis, CEO of Camping World, Grand Marshal of Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway, and star of CNBC’s “The Profit,” made the announcement over the weekend that the retailer is very close to announcing a deal that would continue its title sponsorship of NASCAR’s Truck Series. The original agreement with NASCAR is scheduled to conclude after the 2015 season.
According to the sanctioning body, no formal contract has been signed, but “the agreement between the two parties has proven to be a beneficial one.”
“In about a month, we’ll be announcing a significant extension to that contract. It’s been great for us,” said Camping World’s Lemonis in a statement. “The NASCAR relationship has worked well for Camping World. When we started, we had 35 stores. Now, we’re up to 120 stores. As we travel the country and we meet new customers in stores, they always are very appreciative of our relationship with NASCAR. It’s been good.”
Gaining a long-term commitment from Camping World to sponsor the Truck Series would be a relief for NASCAR, which is set to lose Nationwide Insurance as title sponsor for the NASCAR Nationwide Series at the end of the 2014 season. The sponsorship of the Cup Series by Sprint runs through 2016.
The NCWTS is back in action on March 29th at 2:30 PM (ET) when the trucks visit Martinsville Speedway in the Kroger 250, which can be seen on Fox Sports 1. Ratings for the season opener were up 11 percent.
Harvick Takes Win At Phoenix In Second Race With New Team
posted by Justin Tucker
Monday March 3, 2014
Phoenix International Raceway has become Kevin Harvick’s home away from home. Sunday Afternoon was no exception as Harvick charged to the front early and would dominate for much of the day, leading 224 of the scheduled 312 laps to record his record fifth win on the one mile oval and his third win in the last four races at Phoenix.
Harvick, coming off of a disappointing Speedweeks which was capped by a last lap crash in the Daytona 500 in his debut with Stewart-Haas Racing, set the tone on Saturday by winning both practices while having the best 5 and 10-lap averages in the first practice of the day on Saturday. On Sunday, Harvick and his No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet was nothing short of flawless as he was able to hold Dale Earnhardt, Jr. by .489 seconds after a late race restart to claim his 24th career Sprint Cup Series victory.
“Man, this is awesome,” Harvick said after his dominant victory on Sunday. “Man, this just solidifies so many things and so many decisions. It’s been so much work with all the time and effort that these guys (the crew) have put in—but what a race car.”
Stewart Haas Racing co-owner Gene Haas shared in Harvick’s excitement after the race.
“It took long enough,” Haas joked. “This is phenomenal. I think there was a lot of skepticism last year about what myself and Tony (Stewart) what we were up to, was there a lot of madness to this. Quite frankly, it’s a great team, there’s a lot of synergy at the shop, people working together. I don’t know what we did, but I think we put together a great organization.”
Daytona 500 winner Dale Earnhardt, Jr. continued his hot start to the 2014 season. Earnhardt Jr. would finish second on Sunday, marking his seventh consecutive top 10 finish since the end of the 2013 season. Earnhardt Jr. was pleased with the effort after a coast-to-coast whirlwind week after winning his second Daytona 500 and also gave great praise to the efforts of Harvick and the No. 4 team.
“I’ve got to congratulate Kevin. Those guys were two-tenths faster than everyone all weekend in practice. They were just phenomenal,” Earnhardt said. “To be able to run with them all day was a big confidence builder for us.”
Joining Harvick and Earnhardt in the top 5 of The Profit on CNBC 500K were Brad Keselowski with his second consecutive top 3 run of 2014 in third. Keselowski’s Team Penske teammate Joey Logano would finish fourth, and Jeff Gordon would come home fifth in his No. 24 Pepsi Max Chevrolet.
Jimmie Johnson finished in sixth, followed by Ryan Newman with a nice rebound after Daytona in seventh. Carl Edwards would carry the banner for Roush Fenway Racing by finishing eighth, Kyle Busch was ninth, and Jamie McMurray would finish tenth.
A look at the Profit on CNBC 500K by the numbers. There were 14 lead changes among eight different drivers, there were eight cautions for 39 laps which slowed the race pace to 109.229 MPH.
Next Sunday, the Sprint Cup Series heads to Sin City and the Las Vegas Motor
Starting Lineup: The Profit On CNBC 500K
posted by Thomas Bowles
Saturday March 1, 2014
Drivers in RED (i) are those ineligible to collect Sprint Cup points
Daytona 500 TV Ratings Down
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Wednesday February 26, 2014
What was the longest weather delay in Daytona 500 history turned out to bring NASCAR lower ratings and TV viewership Sunday night than expected. According to a report Monday from FOX Sports, the 56th running of the Daytona 500 airing at 8 PM (ET) posted a 5.6/10 national household rating/share which averaged 9.3 million viewers. That’s down 44 percent from last year’s 9.9, easily making it the least-watched Daytona 500 of all-time.
Due to the six-hour, twenty-two minute rain delay in Daytona, the race was up against the primetime coverage of the Winter Olympics Closing Ceremony from Sochi, Russia on NBC (15.25 million viewers). FOX also reported that 69% of the pre-rain delay viewers of the race, which began at 1 PM (ET) kept tuning in.
In comparison, the 2013 Daytona 500 on FOX was the most-watched race in five years, posting a 9.9/22 rating/share, commanding 16.7 million viewers. The Daytona 500 in 2012, the first to ever be run on a Monday and in the primetime slot did a 7.7/13 overnight rating/share which resulted in 13.67 million households viewing the race according to Nielsen TV ratings data.
Earnhardt, Jr. Claims Second Daytona 500 Victory
posted by Justin Tucker
Wednesday February 26, 2014
Ten years is a long time. For Dale Earnhardt, Jr., it felt like an eternity. NASCAR’s Most Popular Driver endured many near misses and close calls at the Daytona 500 since his only win in the Great American Race in 2004. Earnhardt had finished second in two of his last three Daytona 500s coming into Sunday’s race. He was also riding the tail of a 55-race winless streak, dating back to Michigan in 2012.
However nothing would stop Dale Jr. on Sunday, not even a 6 hour and 22 minute rain delay from capturing his second Daytona 500 win. Earnhardt Jr. led a race-high 54 laps on the evening and used some timely drafting help from teammates Jimmie Johnson and, on the final restart, Jeff Gordon to separate from the pack and secure the victory.
“Winning this race is the greatest feeling that you could feel in this sport besides accepting the trophy for the championship,” said a jubilant Earnhardt after pulling into Victory Lane. “We could fight off battle after battle. We got a little help at the end there from Jeff to get away on the restart. This is amazing. I can’t believe this is happening. I never take this for granted, man because it doesn’t happen twice, let alone once.”
Aside from the race itself the big story of the race was the 6 hour and 22 minute red flag, which threatened to move the race to Monday evening (had the race been postponed, FOX Sports’ Chris Myers had tweeted that the race would resume at 5:00pm EST). However, Mother Nature would cooperate and would allow the race to be run under different conditions from which they practiced this week. Once the race resumed, the intensity picked up from the changing track conditions. This allowed the pack to race side-by-side and at times 3-wide up to seven rows deep.
Joining Earnhardt Jr. in the top 5 for the 2014 Daytona 500 were: Denny Hamlin who closed out a spectacular Speedweeks in second, Brad Keselowski in third, Jeff Gordon in fourth, and Jimmie Johnson who overcome two wrecks leading up to the 500 in fifth.
Rounding out the top 10 in the Daytona 500 were Matt Kenseth in sixth, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. in seventh and Greg Biffle would bring his No. 16 Ford home in eighth. Austin Dillon would come home ninth in his first Cup Series race in the iconic No. 3 for Richard Childress Racing, while Casey Mears would round out the top 10.
A couple of major contenders for the Daytona 500 win would see their hopes dashed early on as Martin Truex, Jr. would blow up just 30 laps into the race, relegating him to a 43rd-place finish in his debut for Furniture Row Racing. Crew chief Todd Berrier was already in Nashville for a test session before the race was even over. Kyle Busch, meanwhile would have a pit road violation just before halfway and would spend much of the race battling back from that mistake. Busch would eventually finish 19th after leading 19 laps.
Danica Patrick would also be bit by bad luck as she was caught up in a multi-car wreck on lap 145. Patrick would lead her second consecutive Daytona 500, but wouldn’t have the finish to show for it finishing 40th. Tony Stewart would encounter a frustrating evening as well, with a fuel pickup problem derailing his quest for his first Daytona 500 win. Stewart would finish 35th.
A look at the Daytona 500 by the numbers. There were 42 lead changes among 18 drivers, while seven cautions for 39 laps would slow the race pace to 145.290 MPH.
Next week, the Sprint Cup Series heads to the “diamond in the desert,” Phoenix International Raceway for The Profit on CNBC 500K. The Green flag is scheduled for 3:15pm EST.
Nationwide Series Post-Race Quotes: Drive4COPD 300
posted by Thomas Bowles
Tuesday February 25, 2014
Frontstretch Interviews – Courtesy Mike Neff
ELLIOTT SADLER – FINISHED 4th
Thoughts on the race?
It’s definitely a lot different racing than what we’re used to.
Comfortable with it?
Yeah, it’s just different. You’re worried about what you’re doing, but you’re also worried about what everyone else is doing and they’re not doing more than you’re doing. Physically pushing a guy is way better than just riding so you just gotta time it right and push it to the edge.
Happy to start the year with a top 5?
Yeah. Hell, that was the worst we ran all day, I think. I have no idea how they put the 3 car in front of us on that last restart. I hadn’t seen the 3 car hardly all day. When they put us from fifth to sixth, on the outside line, it just really boxed us in. I would have really restarted behind my teammate and given him a good push to the front. Anyways, it is what it is; we’ll take it and move on.
Looked like you were up front all day.
The guys did a good job. We had a fast race car. Great pit stops, just really proud of these guys. The car’s in one piece and we can take it to Talladega now. Great job by my guys. A lot of effort came into coming down here to Daytona and giving ourselves a shot to win. We had that chance to be up front and make some things happen. Fifth is not what we want, but we’ll take it and move on.
Bumping vs Pushing?
It’s way harder. You don’t want to lay on the guy in front of you, so it’s tough racing. A lot different than what we’re used to, ‘cause you gotta go. You gotta drag the brake too ‘cause you don’t want to hit the guys and you don’t want to stay on him. It’s a lot harder mentally than what we’ve done in the past.
Car was strong all day. Pushing vs. Bumping, is that harder to do than just getting on somebody and pushing them?
Yeah, it is a little bit. When you bump ‘em, you jar ‘em, it kinda jacks ‘em a little bit. It’s a little more abrupt, obviously. I thought it was OK there at the end. It was certainly fun and hopefully entertaining. But a little bit of a struggle in the early part of the race and the midpart of the race to see a good race. And that’s unfortunate for the fans. You can’t do that the whole race, you can’t tear up your stuff, knock your grill in, overheat your motor, all that stuff so there’s no sense in doing all that until you get down to the last lap. The 7 and the 6, they did a good job. Man, the 7 really held the 22 and I tight on the bottom. I was rubbing his door and hitting the apron at the same time, no room whatsoever. So it was good; wish we were the ones who could have won but a lot better now than what we were last year.
Going home in one piece makes it a lot better, right?
Yeah. My back feels good. My foot feels good. Past years here, I’ve been going home with pain so I’m alright.
Connect with Mike!
2014 Truck Series Post-Race Quotes: Daytona (Exclusives)
posted by Thomas Bowles
Saturday February 22, 2014
When you’re on the outside like that, how frustrating is it?
It’s so hard. Timothy Peters has won here. Kyle Busch has won everywhere. Ron Hornaday has been running Trucks forever, probably before I was even born. I was surrounded by veterans there, and like I told them I don’t have a rookie stripe but I’m a rookie. This is only my fourth Truck race ever, my fourth superspeedway race, and man, I figured out when the 17 got up in front of me, I pushed him. And as soon as I pushed him, he took off. And I went with him. And I just kept doing it, and before I knew it, he was leading. And I saw Ron in my mirror, backed up to him, and if it wasn’t for him, I don’t know what would have happened. I gotta thank him big time for that. That was a true teammate move right there. I really appreciate that. He just bounced off me and we got to the front. I tried my hardest to sidedraft Kyle. I was probably touching his door.
Top 5 in the No. 30 truck. This deal come together at the last minute, but you had a heck of a truck. Tell us about your night.
Yeah, I’ve got to thank Turner Scott Motorsports. The guys worked so hard on this Rheem Comfort Products Chevrolet. Exciting! Just got hung up on the outside and had to wait for my teammate there to catch up. And then he got to the bottom, so… I got the old 32 and started pushing ol’ Ryan to the front. So, it’s not bad. We’ll take it. You just don’t want to step over that boundary. You don’t know how far to push and shove. We bumped about six times down the straightaway without latching onto them. Hopefully, that was OK and we came home with a top 5.
Connect with Mike!
Check in with Matt and Jay on their site at CareyandCoffey.com.
Jeff Meyer · Thursday June 4, 2009
Over the last couple of weeks, ever since the rumors started flying about the demise of Tony Eury, Jr. as Dale, Jr.’s crew chief, the ‘media’ has reported several times, in various ways, that “studies have shown that when Jr. isn’t running well, NASCAR’s ratings are down.”
NASCAR of course, actually likes to hear that because it shifts the blame from where it really lies; Brian France. As much as the media (with the exception of this media) and NASCAR would like you to believe their standard party line, I’ve done some ‘studies’ of my own which point to the fact that, believe it or not, NASCAR is full of it, and we all know what ‘it’ is. (For those more sheltered readers out there, here is a hint: it rhymes with ‘scoop’ which, oddly enough, is what you need to dig yourself out of ‘it’ whenever Brian France starts slinging ‘it’!)
First of all, NASCAR has always said that ‘no one man is bigger than the sport itself’ so why, all of a sudden, is the recent demise and the apparent future of NASCAR so dependant upon Dale, Jr.? The truth is it is NOT. Yes, Jr. is the ‘most popular’ driver and he has millions upon millions of followers, to the point that they have seceded from the Union and formed their own ‘nation’ but they are not culprits here. Let’s face it, most of this ‘nation’s’ populace would tune in to see their leader take a crap, which as fate would have it, is exactly what they have been seeing most Sunday afternoons anyway. No, the Jr. Nation is not the problem as NASCAR would like you to believe. Let’s look at some other cold, hard facts.
Brian France became the head of NASCAR in 2003. In 2004, he instituted his brilliant idea of The Chase ‘playoff’ system because well, other major sports had that type of system and he wanted to go head to head against the NFL on any given Sunday.
During the 2004 season two things happened that are purely coincidental and independent of one another. The first is NASCAR’s ratings did in fact rise, partly because fans wanted to see how this new system would work, and partly because they already had been rising at an almost exponential rate since the tragic season of 2001. The second thing that happened was that 2004 was Dale, Jr.’s ‘breakout’ season of his career where he scored 6 wins, 16 top 5s and 21 top 10s.
Technically speaking, I will say that 2004 was the zenith for both NASCAR and Dale, Jr. and that is probably where most of the recent ‘studies’ have stopped. My study does not. Let’s look a little deeper.
Up until the year 2000, television coverage of the races was brokered by deals between the networks and the owners of individual tracks. Despite this unruly, hodge-podge system, all the races were being televised and NASCAR’s popularity was growing. In December of 1999 however, NASCAR, sensing a dollar to be made, allowed their then head of marketing genius, Brian France, to negotiate a centralized, six year television deal between NASCAR, FOX Sports, FX, NBC and TNT, which he did to the tune of 2.4 BILLION dollars!
As we all know, since Brian successfully brokered that colossal deal, other major changes included naming Brian as the head of NASCAR and a Cup Series name change (from Winston to Nextel/Sprint) which resulted in yet even more BILLIONS pouring into the sanctioning body’s coffers.
As a result of that first ‘centralized’ TV deal, long time fans began to become disenfranchised from the sport mainly because of an increase in commercial breaks, emphasis on the more popular drivers and teams to the total and blatant exclusion of others, and the de-emphasis of actual racing coverage in exchange for an increase of hype, fluff and general BS!
Late in 2005, with first deal’s expiration looming and the announcement of NBC’s desire to ‘get the hell out’, France was able to fleece a whopping 4.8 BILLION dollar, eight year contract out of FOX, Speed Channel, ABC/ESPN and TNT! As one might expect and we all have had to endure, with a price like that to pay, the networks have relied on even more commercials, more fluff, more hype and all around bigger heapings of non-race related BS the likes of which would make a billy goat puke!
Other unpopular contributions that Brian has brought to the sport include (but are not limited to) the SPECtacular and hated Car of Tomorrow, the quest for the ‘casual fan’ and the insistance of two races a year in Fontana, CA! I could go on but I don’t think I have to. The point is that since its peak in 2004, NASCAR ratings and fan satisfaction have been dropping in almost the same exponential way they rose.
Meanwhile, what has Jr. been doing since his peak in ’04? In the last 5 years, he has amassed (to date) 3 wins, 35 top 5s and 61 top 10s. No, it’s not what I would call lighting the racing world on fire, but there are guys out there that never reach those numbers during their whole career.
When you lay it side by side, I defy anyone to logically tell me that Jr’s less than stellar performance is more responsible for the drop in ratings than the dealings of Brian France. If anything, NASCAR should be grateful for the fanatical tenacity of the Jr. Nation, without which the ratings would be even lower.
I have never personally heard a die hard 88 fan say that they are not going to watch the race because Jr. has been sucking as of late. I HAVE heard numerous once die hard NASCAR fans, myself included, say they don’t care if they see the race because NASCAR in general has been sucking (for various reasons) of late!
The truth of the matter is is that there IS one man bigger than the sport itself, but it is NOT Dale Earnhardt, Jr. That honor squarely belongs to the man that sits behind the CEO’s desk in Daytona, FL. A desk upon which you will NEVER see a ‘The buck stops here!’ sign!
Stay off the wall,
©2000 - 2008 Jeff Meyer and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
The Carl Long affair is an exercise in pure arrogance by a sanctioning body run amuck.I suspect it may become necessary for we fans to boycott Nascar at the tracks and the television broadcasts. It might be the only way to bring rational management back to our sport.
Don.we can only hope that will happen, but let’s NOT hold our breath!I have already quit attending races altogether and never watch the entire race if I watch at all….usually find out who won on the late news! I won’t buy anything that is a nascrap sponsor, but I must be in the minority.
As I stated in another column, please start writing/calling NA$CRAP sponsors and telling them you will no longer be buying or using their products/services as long as they continue to line King Brian’s pockets with the cash!
AND! Send an e-mail to:
explaining your disgust with the entire Mayfield/Long situation or any other complaint you might have!
“In December of 1999 however, NASCAR, sensing a dollar to be made, allowed their then head of marketing genius, Brian France, to negotiate a centralized, six year television deal between NASCAR, FOX Sports, FX, NBC and TNT, which he did to the tune of 2.4 BILLION dollars!”
There lies the first biggest problem with NA$CAR. A marketing man can only do so many things. They can package the product, sell the product to a buyer, tell the end user why he needs the product, and pretty much shove it down the throats of the general public. The one thing a marketing man CAN’T do is make the customer ENJOY the product. That my friend, is solely up to the customer. Once the customer decides he doesn’t care for the product, its then back up to the marketing folks to fix it or the customer moves on.
And therein lies the second largest problem with NA$CAR; THEY DON’T CARE! As long as they were making money hand over fist, NA$CAR was happy…”so screw the customer” (that’s a NA$CAR marketing phrase in case you missed it). And now that the cash cow is looking a little lean on the hoof I guess it’s time for the marketing folks to hop back on the problem. B. France got it this far as an old “marketing guy…” Can’t wait to see how he’s going to fix it this time now that he is fully entrenched as the CEO.
Last man out, turn off the lights and bring the flag.
I don’t think it has much to do with Jr’s success or failure because many of us don’t care and those that do are dedicated fans already. You can’t keep switching the starting times for a 4 hour infomercial and expect people to watch. Also, when NA$CAR makes up the rules as they go, fans get frustrated with the obvious bias for certain Teams and drivers.
Jeff said: “Yes, Jr. is the ‘most popular’ driver and he has millions upon millions of followers”
lemmings, sheep, disciples, hangers-on, zealots, etc.
Jeff said: “ tune in to see their leader take a crap”
You’ll say crap but you wont say poop?
Jeff said: “I have never personally heard a die hard 88 fan say that they are not going to watch the race because Jr. has been sucking as of late.”
I guess you havent seen the stands empty out when Dale Jr wrecks on lap 50, or how much the TV ratings decline after that point, then?
If Junior Nation were actual race fans, it wouldn’t be so bad right? They are junior fans and that’s it.
i initially became interested in nascar watching a dale jr show on mtv, but the actual racing is what grabbed me and never let go. when jr made the switch, so did i, to another driver, but i was still very much interested in nascar. i completely agree with your article. dale jr got alot of people interested in nascar, and then brian france screwed it up. too many changes in too short a time. my interest is waning from all the changes and i hate that car!
I remember sitting with my dad and watching #43 racing in a car with a wing on the back but I have finally had enough. No more NA$CRAP no more endless commercials and absolutely no more of that idiot DW and his freaking gopher and booger booger booger at the start of every race.I will head to Dubuque County Fairgrounds on Sat.and enjoy real racing by real racers, you know,the folks that do it for the love of racing-something NA$CRAP forgot a long time ago.
Jeff Meyer – you sir are my hero!!!
P on U Brainle$$ France!
P.S. – Please bring back the old cars and point system Na$crap D bags. I know you’re reading this (or one of your grundles is and will report back to you)!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Could it be that one of the problems is… everyone (including himself) thinks that Brian France was/is the “marketing brains” when in fact George Payne, (who left NASCAR for IMG) was the real genius? It seems to me that NASCAR has been on the skids ever since he left! Great leaders understand their own weaknesses, and then proceed to hire the best and the brightest to fill the gaps. (Roger Penske’s strength) It is the fool who believes his own press and wallows in “unearned glory!”
NASCAR has lost a loyal fan….probably forever.
I’m out. It’s over. All done.
This fan has awakened from the “bad dream” !
You can take a pile of compost, tie it up in a very pretty package with a beautiful bow, but it’s still compost. That’s what Brian France has tried to do with Nascar. I defy any of the big wigs to look me in the eye and say that if it were Jr’s car, or Jimmie’s car that was in violation the same as Carl Long, that they would have gotten a 12 race suspension. No way on God’s green earth. I can back this comment up by pointing to Nascar’s favorite rule, the Corporate Welfare System, aka, the Top 35. Helton and France have all said numerous times that they cannot get rid of the Top 35 rule because they have a duty to make sure that the stars and their sponsors are in the race each week. So does anyone honestly think that Jr would be suspended for the same violation as Long? Only the little guy with no sponsors are going to get hit that hard.
More proof that “Nasacar” doesnt have a clue….last year they issued that infamous statement “Shut up and drive”. This year they toss a meeting out there asking for driver/owner input.
So what do they want from the drivers? Run Nascar or shut up and drive?”
I didn’t watch Dover last week, I seem to be completely disinterested this year. It is all foolishness and a freak show. Brain Fart and company have completely killed it. I thought years ago that NASCAR would get better when the fad crowd started following other things, but boy was I wrong. Everybody is leaving in huge droves, probably never to return. We just don’t care anymore. There is no driver to root for, no make of auto to root for, no little guy, no nothing. It’s an hours drive from here to Whynot Motorsports Park, some of the best dirt tracking in the country, but worth the drive on Saturday night. See ya’ll at the dirt track.
>>>As a result of that first ‘centralized’ TV deal, long time fans began to become disenfranchised from the sport mainly because of an increase in commercial breaks, emphasis on the more popular drivers and teams to the total and blatant exclusion of others, and the de-emphasis of actual racing coverage in exchange for an increase of hype, fluff and general BS! >>>>
That pretty much nails it right there. The only thing I would add is that fans have finally had it with the blatant favoritism towards certain teams/drivers when it comes to enforcing rules (such as the yellow line rule-one example) and others. NASCRAP must think the average fan it too stupid to figure out that it all depends on who you are in this sport. Fair play and true sportsmanship have died a horrible death. It’s all about how to artificially create excitement. That’s how the stinking Chase was born. Phoney debris cautions, different rule books for different drivers — fake, fake, fake, just like WWE. No wonder Nascar fans are laughed at.
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