The Frontstretch: BSNews: NASCAR To File Suit Over "Spin 'N' Crash" Raceway by Jeff Meyer -- Thursday October 29, 2009

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BSNews: NASCAR To File Suit Over "Spin 'N' Crash" Raceway

Voices From The Heartland · Jeff Meyer · Thursday October 29, 2009


(Daytona Beach, FL) — BSNews has learned that top officials in NASCAR plan to file a lawsuit against toymaker Fisher-Price unless some fundamental changes are made to one of its products that is related to stock car racing. That product is Fisher-Price’s “Little People Spin ‘N’ Crash Raceway.”

“From the first time one of these things was brought into my office, and I really sat down and played with it, I was appalled,” said NASCAR CEO, Brian France. “This is not how we want stock car racing to be presented to our future fans and drivers, and especially those at such an early and impressionable age.”

A quick check of the Fisher-Price website that describes the new holiday toy may offer some clues as to what has the France family so upset. Under the heading of “product details,” Fisher-Price describes the new toy as such…

On your mark, get set…crash! Or race, whichever your little driver thinks is more fun! Turn on the ignition to “start” the engines (just like in a real car!), then get ready for figure-8 turns, gears shifting, cars crashing — drivers may even head right off the track! Now, ladies and gentlemen, this is REAL racing excitement! Elevated lift in the “pit” area goes up and down. Raceway includes two race cars and two articulated driver figures, four flags, and a trophy.

BSNews has learned that NASCAR CEO, Brian France, plans to file a lawsuit against Fisher-Price.

France says the product does very little to portray the sport, which his family has nurtured into a multi-billion dollar industry over the last 60 years, as it really is.

“We certainly don’t want any of the yutes…excuse me, youths…out there to think that racing is just about crashing,” says France. “The very name of this product is an abomination! This product has a button to push so these kids can hear, and I quote, ‘cool crash sounds.’ There is nothing cool about crashing, and we think that propagating that idea amongst our most impressionable little ones is just wrong.”

France went on to cite the numerous safety innovations that his family has invented over the years to make the sport safer, such as SAFER barriers, HANS devices, race track catchfences so effective that their makeup is a closely guarded secret, and the CoT (Car of Today), just to name a few.

Looking closely at the product, one can clearly see many details that may also be fueling the lawsuit. Details such as a “wing” on the back of the car and little fuel cans that look like mini-versions of the real thing suggest that there may be some copyright or sponsor issues that has NASCAR upset about as well.

“I can’t remember all the specifics of the lawsuit, nor could I comment about them if I could remember,” said France when asked about the patent infringement issues. “But one can clearly see that these are a few of the things that we, no doubt, have our people looking at.”

Another aspect of the product that has NASCAR officials a bit concerned is the “Developmental Benefits” that Fisher-Price has listed on their website, which reads…

This imaginative stage lets your child be the “director” of the action, making all the decisions and even including others in the play. Imagining helps a child think things through, which is great preparation for learning.

“When it comes to stock car racing, we as a family, as a sanctioning body, have striven throughout the years to let everyone know that WE call the shots. We simply cannot have future drivers, especially at this early stage in their lives, growing up thinking that ‘they’ call the shots,” said France. “Where are the men up in the suites that maintain control? For that matter, where are the suites? We, as a corporation, simply cannot have products like this out there… influencing the minds of the future generations that eventually will provide our livelihood and future profit. This product simply portrays racing as chaos and car-crashing mayhem.”

NASCAR insists that changes must be made to the product before it will consider rescinding the suit. BSNews has learned that those changes include adding NASCAR and ISC logos, a “cutaway” car that shows its inner workings, a 20 minute warmup mode (or “pre-race” show, if you will) from the moment the toy is turned on ‘till it actually starts, an add on attraction (to be sold separately) called “Little People Go In ‘N’ Learn HoF,” and two additional figures in suits that sit high above the actual track but have no real purpose… just to name a few.

“We not only want these little ones to race, but we want them to learn the history of it, too,” said France. “We also need to sit down and figure out just who those ‘articulated’ drivers really are. The last four times that I have played with it until the batteries gave out, the little blue car wins every time! That is just not real racing.”

Ironically, the Florida court system has assigned the suit a case number of 12-1.

BSNews, your first thought is our first name!

Stay off the wall,


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Ghost of Curtis Turner
10/29/2009 07:59 AM

Loved it Jeff, but the sad thing is, your not too far off.

Bill B
10/29/2009 08:11 AM

Maybe NASCAR should wait until after this weekend to file that suit. Afterall they will look stupid if there are a lot of spins and crashes.

Dans Mom
10/29/2009 08:18 AM

IN all seriousness, maybe it’s the wrecks, or the sound, the drivers looks, the ability to bring your own beer – whatever it is, those little things bring fans in.

Even though beer cans have nothing to do with racing – it’s an immediate draw for some folks. Like in Music, Britney Spears draws fans who may someday, appreciate the finer art involved in musical performances. If everyone’s first musical influence was a Chicago Symphony Orchestra Performance – NO ONE would like music. But through a variety of exposure and dedicate true artists are developed.

I started liking NASCAR because my brother did. Then, I enjoyed drinking beer during races (10 per race was the goal). As I’ve been around the sport more I’ve learned to appreciate the more intricate details of racing. Now that gets my blood pumping.

Sure wrecks this weekend will be spectacular, and I’ll have a few beers – but the art of the draft… that’s real racing.

Can’t WAIT to watch Jimmie set up Kurt BUsch for 30 laps at Phoenix before finnally picking his spot for a charge for the lead!

Oh, and that would make a very boring toy.

10/29/2009 08:20 AM

OK OK!!! This is sososo funny! I got my grandson one of these cool little toys for Christmas..and now..if what you are writing is real..(I can never tell what’s “real” and what’s “Alice in Wonderland” with the media) but if so…I am going to have to get one for me! It’s worth every penny if it pisses of NASCAR! Obviously NASCAR is taking this too far….I got it with the mind it would get my grandson interested in racing! (I also got him a “swearing, tape recorder throwing, butt soiled, fast food eating but fun loving Tony Stewart racetrack last year – but am going to hold off giving it to him until Tony’s lawsuit is settled!) Come on now NASCAR..we’re already laughing at you for the “real racing”…get a life and join in!!!!

10/29/2009 09:04 AM

It’s a real tragedy that if anyone should ever decide to make the NA$CAR version of The Life of Brian. The two actors who would be perfect for the lead are no longer with us. That would be John Candy, & Chris Farley. Chris would be my choice, as John was always like-able. Whereas Chris was just goofy.

Peter DiVergilio
10/29/2009 09:05 AM

Err.. Does the title: “BS News” ring a bell in anyones mind?

Don Mei
10/29/2009 12:54 PM

Oh god!! The sad part is it has the ring of reality to it!!!Isnt that an amusing image? LOL..Brian France sitting in his office playing with a Fisher-Price toy!!! Dear God, cant you just that one up? Thanks for the chuckle.BS becomes reality! Oh and Rosanne Barr or Rosie O’Donnell to play Brian.

Kevin in SoCal
10/29/2009 01:08 PM

After weeks of slow rollers back to the pitcher, Jeff finally hits one out of the park! Way to go!

10/29/2009 04:53 PM

What a mean old man!! Taking toys away from little kids. When I was a kid and handed two toy cars the FIRST thing done would a huge crash sequence complete with sound effects. Let kids be kids – crashing toy cars is an important part of fan development!

The Turnip!
10/29/2009 05:27 PM

Hey! Where did you find a picture of King Brian, on his feet, able to walk!

Oh, must be from the archives!



Contact Jeff Meyer

Recent articles from Jeff Meyer:

Voices From The Cheap Seats: The Tale Of Two Tires
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Want to know more about Jeff Meyer or view his complete article archives? Then hop on over to his archive and bio page.