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!
2014 Budweiser Duels Post Race Quotes
posted by Matt Stallknecht
Friday February 21, 2014
BUDWEISER DUELS POST-RACE QUOTES
They’re saying the wheel bearing burned up in it. I don’t know what caused it, they’re taking it all apart to figure out what the heck happened. Something abnormal that’s for sure I don’t think I’ve ever had that happen at all. Hopefully, we made the race and hopefully we can fix the problem before Sunday.
WHAT WAS THAT LOUD BOOM ONCE YOU TURNED INTO THE GARAGE?
Loud pop was a tire… thankfully, it popped, hopefully it didn’t hurt anybody. All the heat created in the left front that popped was pretty weird.
REALLY GOOD RUN. WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT?
Yeah, it was good. We have a car we can work with for the 500. Got a good starting spot, so we’re going to rest easy, fluff and buff our car for a couple of days and get ready for Sunday.
ANY DIFFERENCE ON WHETHER THE TOP OR BOTTOM LANE WORKED?
Yeah, I was just moving around, trying to stay with the flow. For me, this car works on all parts of the racetrack. So I’m pretty happy with it.
DALE EARNHARDT, JR.
GOT SHUFFLED BACK, AFTER PIT STOPS AND THEN COULDN’T GET BACK UP TO THE FRONT. WHY?
Nah, we were just sitting there waiting until the last few laps to make a move. You didn’t want to pull down and get sent to the back. Seen a couple of guys get sent to the back really quick so we were just kind of waiting for the end. I felt like we had a good situation there with Ambrose behind us — we had a good run off Turn 2 and I went. It was the last lap, time to go do something, nobody went with us but hopefully Sunday is a different story.
We got a great car. We don’t have to work hard. We learned, we got a good race car. Got a car in one piece, ready to go so we’ll try and get through the next couple of practices, deliver it to the starting group this Sunday and we’ll be real happy.
YOU’RE IN THE DAYTONA 500!
Yeah, it’s pretty awesome. This Whitetail Chevrolet was so fast that I knew all I had to do was stick it behind smart, intelligent drafters and we could have a good finish. That’s what we did in the Duels and I’m excited. I’m excited to go do some stuff with the Nationwide car and have some more practice with this. But to know that we’re locked in the Daytona 500’s pretty cool.
YOU WERE OBVIOUSLY IN FRONT OF THAT MELEE AT THE END. WHEN YOU WERE UP FRONT THERE IN THE BEGINNING, WERE YOU HOPING TO JUST STAY IN LINE AND LET YOU FINISH TOP 5?
I was pretty content to ride and luckily I knew a lot of people around us were. It was nice to have a little calm and not really have to be racing hard the whole time. I knew that the pit stop was going to shake everything up and that’s exactly what happened. Fell back a little bit there but made the right moves at the end to get a good finish.
HOW STRONG ARE THESE RCR CARS?
They’re very strong! They definitely have the capabilities to be winning one of these races.
YOU’RE IN THE TOP 5 FOR YOUR HEAT IN THE DAYTONA 500. YOUR PRIMARY CAR IS SITTING RIGHT IN THE GARAGE, KIND OF WADDED UP. DID YOU THINK THIS ONE HAD IT IN IT?
Yeah, it’s a brand new car also. It’s just not quite as good as the primary but still a damned good car. I’m just proud of everybody at RCR for building such fast race cars. All of our cars have been fast, ECR motor’s been strong, even our affiliate teams have been qualifying really good and racing good. So… excited about 2014! It’s going to be a good year.
WELL MAN, YOU STARTED IN THE BACK BUT WORKED YOUR WAY TO THE FRONT WHEN IT COUNTED MOST. WERE YOU JUST BIDING YOUR TIME THROUGHOUT THE RACE?
Eh, you never know if you’re going to get back up there or not. We had to start at the back, we had to make a run early and see what we could do. We drove right to 10th, or something like that and then it got stagnant. We tried to make something happen, and went to the back again. Drove back up to the front. Again, just really proud of my guys. Matt Kruder did a hell of a job on that pit stop getting just enough gas in to gain some spots there.
RCR CARS SEEM PRETTY DARNED STRONG. DO YOU THINK THE RCR CARS HAVE SOMETHING FOR THEM ON SUNDAY — ESPECIALLY THE THREE JOE GIBBS RACING CARS THAT SEEM TO BE THE CLASS OF THE FIELD RIGHT NOW?
Oh yeah. The 20 car was extremely fast. The 11 didn’t qualify that good, but he’s a good drafter. I think he won. We definitely have something for him.
Check in with Matt and Jay on their site at CareyandCoffey.com.
Voices From the Heartland · Jeff Meyer · Thursday November 12, 2009
We’ve all seen the commercials: Rosetta Stone is touted as the most effective language learning method/software available. Their concept is not to teach with flash cards, dictionaries, or memorization drills, but rather, “By surrounding you with words, images, and the voices of native speakers, our method lets you progress naturally from words and phrases to sentences and conversations…” or so says their website. However, when it comes to understanding the ramblings of Brian France, I think even the makers of Rosetta Stone would throw up their hands, head out for a cocktail, and declare it some sort of “Crackerbonics.”
Be that as it may, whenever France does decide to speak, it is I who always seems to draw the unenviable task of trying to translate his missives by this site’s managing editors. The credentials I bring to the table to accomplish this task, as seen by the editors, are A) I’ve tried it before, B) they assume I drink more than them and may have some sort of inside understanding to Brian’s way of thinking, and C) they assume I drink more than them and am used to enduring the kind of headache that such an assignment is sure to produce. There is, however, another credential I have recently obtained that may help, and that is a “Gold” rating from the “National Career Readiness Certificate” program.
Under this program, one of the tests is “Reading for Information.” It is based on levels that range from 3 to 7. The following is what my certificate says about my results …
“This person scored at Level 7. Individuals with Level 7 skills can apply concepts from densely detailed selections, such as excerpts from complex regulatory and legal documents, to new situations. They can understand difficult concepts and complex procedures containing jargon and technical terms whose definitions must be derived from context. Level 7 is the highest level measured by this test.”
The most recent attempt by Brian France to coherently speak publicly that I have been assigned to translate stems from an interview with Dustin Long of The Virginian-Pilot. Long’s interview lasted about 15 minutes and he (Long) offered no opinion or attempt at explaining what France was saying. To be honest, I don’t blame him. I, however, using my “Level 7” skills, will attempt it; or, at the very least, show that the man actually said nothing at all and that Dustin Long lost 15 minutes of his life that can never be recaptured.
When asked his feelings about recent comments some TV personalities made during interviews and the Talladega broadcast, this is what France had to say:
“Clearly, this is a sport that has a lot of opinions, and most other sports channel their thoughts and criticisms differently, and that is an unusual thing that we have to have people within the sport openly just criticizing as we go along, but maybe that’s something very unique in NASCAR that no other sport has to sort out. We’ll sort it out.’’
Hmm. Brian clearly hears a lot of talk around him… but I think he has no idea what anyone is talking about. Don’t all sports have “armchair quarterbacks” with pre-game shows, halftime shows, and post-game shows? Don’t all those TV personalities offer their “opinion” and criticisms? How is NASCAR unique? “We’ll sort it out” clearly means, “I don’t have a clue, but I’ll have Ramsey Poston look into it and publish something almost as ridiculous as what I just said.”
Next up, Brian was asked to clarify his feelings that some fans think NASCAR is trying to keep the broadcasters from telling the truth…
“It’s not that way. We fully expect a lot of criticism for any number of reasons, judgment calls that are made, officiating calls that are made, and some strategy or policy decisions that are made. We’ve always had that. That’s OK. What I’m saying is in opinions that are under the guise of criticism or being critical that just go on and on and on without much thought, that’s different from some policy or rule violation that we didn’t handle correctly. Somebody is more than fair to criticize us. It’s just there’s an unprecedented level that occurs when you espouse your opinion about how to do one thing or another.”
While that is a pretty long “clarification,” it does start to reveal what is wrong with France’s thinking or perception. It is OK to criticize… just don’t keep doing it! Brian, there is a reason that there is an “unprecedented level” of criticism. This current regime under which NASCAR is now ruled has all but ruined what was once a good thing. If NASCAR is so good at listening to the fans, aka “criticism,” why are you doing nothing about it?
Fans are gone, ratings are… well, let’s tackle that question right now! Brian was asked why while some think a raise in NFL ratings are a result of the current recession, NASCAR’s numbers continue to drop? For it does stand to reason that even if a fan can’t go to a race or game they would watch it on TV, right?
“Because there’s not one thing,” was France’s reply. “The recession, you can make the case, I would agree with that. I think there’s a sense of community, a sense of people aren’t going out as much. They’re going to focus on something, it’s probably going to be their favorite team. I would agree with that. But if you don’t have storylines and nine other things going your way, then you won’t get all the benefit of that, and the NFL has a lot of neat storylines with Brett Favre coming back and lots of parity in their league and they’re doing really well. In our situation, you can’t compare us to any one sport, but, obviously our storylines aren’t what they have been in the past and will be in the future. That’s just the way it goes.”
OK, well how many storylines do you need? Dale Jr., as “reported” by the National Enquirer, is in a “death spiral,” Jeremy Mayfield is “on drugs,” France family members are on drugs and terrorizing the city, Jimmie Johnson is making history, fans are getting hurt in the stands by flying debris which will never happen again thanks to super secret fence design, NASCAR wins awards, HoF inductees are selected, etc, etc. The bottom line is, (and I find it absurd that a “marketing genius” such as France can’t figure it out) is that your “product” simply sucks of late!
Speaking of the “product,” wouldn’t it behoove the CEO, grandson of the founder, the ultimate man responsible, to be concerned about each and every show he puts on? Especially something like the 40th anniversary of the show at a track that was one of his family’s greatest achievements, Talladega?
“I didn’t see it. I really didn’t see all of it.”
Well, at least that quote needs no explanation! Ironic, though, how it explains a lot about what is wrong in our sport today. Moving on, here are some of Brian’s thoughts about the “competition” level in NASCAR.
“I think we’re getting better and I think it’s very good… it’s easy to get off track when you look at how good Jimmie Johnson has been, how dominant, he’s been and sort of forget that there’s been lots of hard-fought passing and racing that has gone, but there has. We’re quite pleased with it going into … finishing up in 2009. I think what the case is you have certain drivers like Carl Edwards who has not, although he made the Chase, he hasn’t won a race and he was developing his fan base, won so many times and ran up front most of last year, has not done that this year. Dale Jr. obviously has not performed the way he wants to perform. It’s very driver specific. Those two guys represent a lot of fans, especially Dale Jr. If they’re struggling, it’s easy to say the racing is not as good as I think it should be. If my football team is not winning, I would think the league is not having as good of a year, too. That’s normal.”
Well, I’m sure Dale, Jr. will be relieved a bit to know that he now shares part of the blame for NASCAR’s woes with Carl Edwards! And we have learned that Detroit Lions fans, and Tampa Bay fans, and Packer fans, and Bear fans, etc. all think that the entire NFL sucks because their teams are not doing well!
Folks, this could go on and on but it is at this point that I must apologize to you, the reader, for I have failed you. This hasn’t been, as promised, a “translation” of Brian’s comments, but more of an “journalistically unethical” depiction of Brian France himself. I’m sorry, but just like the announcers in the booth at Talladega, I call ‘em like I see ‘em, and I clearly see… well, I don’t know what the heck I see. After reading through the whole interview, even I, with my Level 7 “Reading for Information” rating, cannot make heads nor tails of what this guy is saying.
How’s that old saying go? The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result…(see Brian France)…or something like that!
Stay off the wall (and please resist the urge to bang your head against it after reading Brian’s interview!)
©2000 - 2008 Jeff Meyer and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
Jeff thank YOU for trying to sort out the muddle that has become NA$CAR. I’be been a fan for more than forty years, even did the PA at Daytona in 1968 and 1969, was at the first Talladega race…etc…etc…etc. And Brian France wonders why I’m no longer a race fan? Well to be sure, he has no clue. What more can I say…COT…strange cautions…and just the way NA$CAR trats their eroding fan base..Oh what I’d give for the “old” NASCAR.
I read Long’s interview with Brian France and came away with the same opinion. Just what the hell was he saying? It’s no wonder that Nascar is floundering. The guy in charge is just clueless. I gotta lay some blame for this on Bill France Jr. He had to know his son didn’t have the skills to properly manage the family business.
I’m reminded of a quote by Sheriff Buford T. Justice of “Smokey and the Bandit” fame… “Soon as I get home, first thing I’m gonna do is punch yo mamma in da mouth!”
OK, so now Carl Edwards is to blame? Thank you for that bit of insite Mr France…….
Ya’ know? Who, just who, coulda’ done a better job of deciphering a Brain Farce commentary than one Jeff Meyer? Wonderful reading Jeff! Thnks.
Thing is, I don’t know whether to just throw up, or give up? Anytime Brain Farce opens his mouth, it only spills out garbage! And one can tell that by the stink coming from each race!
And of ALL his comments, why, why would anyone in their right mind (well, maybe that explains it) would tell the world “I did not watch all the race on TV”! (Brain Farces comments re: Talladega)
Isn’t this just typical of the total disdain Brain Farce has for the fan base? Or what’s left of the fan base anyway!
Maybe the NFL is doing well because their playoff isn’t a phony contrived cutdown of superior teams in the name of excitement.
The way Brian France talks, without actually saying anything or making any sense – he would make an excellent Senator or Congressman !!
If Brian doesn’t watch any of the races, how can he say that the racing is any good?
He is so disconnected from the sport he supposedly runs, its no wonder that it is being run into the ground. Of course, the fans are the losers in it all. I think most of the fan base cares more about nascar than he does.
The way Brian France talks – without really saying anything – he would make an excellent candidate for the Senate or Congress !!
Well, since you mentioned Jeremy’s name in this article. I want to say something. It seems that when people write comments, the only ones stay up are the ones that make brian look like an angel. If you don’t they get zapped…Personally, I think brian is a poor leader of nascrap.There are to many favorites in racing, the penciled in rules, are changed for the situation occuring.Racing is NOT what it used to be. Yes, everytime you see brian on tv, he looks like he’s having a good time with an alcoholic bottle, and trying to say things looking very stupid. Everybody sees it.As far as Jeremy is concerened, I think that the charges against him are BOGAS.Jeremy only wanted to race, his life’s dream, but now his career has gone down the tubes.Jeremy still looks like he did ten years ago, has a good, giving heart.Jeremy when he started his team this year did not start and park.So than any press about Jeremy was very character ruining for months after his being accused.Jeremy is not what the charges say. When the france family member got picked up for drugs and drunk, well, that got shoved under the rug, so nobody hears about it.I bet that nite, there was lots of yelling in the ivory towers in Florida.I hope Jeremy wins his case against nascrap.At the rate people are not comming to races, maybe the money will stop, and brain can see what he’s done.Everybody says the commets that are here and the fans of Jeremy feel the same as I do.I just hope that Jeremy can race again, and that racing gets back to being better than what we see now.
Screw NASCRAP folks. Spend your money on your local tracks. As for me I will be attending N Wilkesboro and Rockingham.
You hit the nail on the head, Jeff, I couldn’t have said it better myself. Mr. France is going to “come to” and realize that our beloved sport is HISTORY. What a shame!!!
Our Fearless Leader in Daytona (or is it Charlotte now) will have to have an extremely long period of sobriety to realize what he’s done in turning a great sport into the equivalent of pro wrestling on wheels. Unfortunately for us fans, the long moment of sobriety won’t come quick enough or come at all. He believes his own hype, which is a dangerous thing. So unless somebody with some brass forces him to resign or just flat out replaces him, things are not going to get better.
Forget Congressman or Senate, Brian France gives Obama style answers. A whole lot of big words, and long sentences, but says absolutely nothing!!!
Um Brain France couldn’t be elected dogcather!!!
UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE YEAR!
“Personally, I think brian is a poor leader of nascrap.”
Dustin Long scores again! Not bad for a pencil pusher…which is what he is according to Larry Mac. As are all of the reporters on this site (and the late, great David Poole).
I’ve been a fan of racing since ’78 and it’s amazing all the changes that have happened during Brian’s watch. Not even a soon to be 4 time champ can lift it up. No matter how much they talk about “making history”.
BF did mention that NASCAR wouldn’t move their headquarters to Charlotte from Daytona. He failed to mention why. Reason, the France family owns Daytona. That’s per his step cousin. Remember BF’s little collision with the palm tree?
Why doesn’t the France family do a Tony George on BF? There would be dancing in the streets.
I bet it’s killing him that JJ is ruining his Chase. Hee hee.
Maybe, just maybe, if BF watched one entire race on TV, he’d see why the ratings are down. Passing only on pit road for positions, fake debris cautions, etc.
Thank you Jeff for a great column.
Obviously there should be no reason for doubt as to why NA$CAR is the way it is. BF is the only clueless one left. I’d love to be a mouse in the corner during board meetings. Poston…“Mr. France, I need more money for breath mints if you expect me to eat more turds. I can only spew out so much crap on your behalf.” Helton…“Dammit! Why did we have to lose Dale!”
When I read the original interview, I seriously thought I had injested some spiked morning coffee. The more I read the dizzier my brain was feeling.
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