Voices From the Heartland · Jeff Meyer · Thursday September 29, 2011
If you live in fantasy land, the land in which you think the new ‘touchless soap dispenser’ is a super way to reduce the spread of nasty, icky germs…you probably don’t want to read this. (Here’s a clue…the SOAP is SUPPOSED to kill the germs…AFTER you’ve touched the dispenser! Here’s yer sign!)
Anyway, as I was about to say, NASCAR is not about going fast. It is not about who is a better driver. It is not about who can handle the pressure without breaking down and going to see a ‘sports psychologist’ (can you imagine Dale Sr. or Richard Petty going to see a sports psychologist? If you have to see a psychologist to get motivated in the sport you participate in, it’s time for you to get out! Man up, drive faster or go home!). It’s not about letting it all hang out in the final turn to catch the man in front of you. No, it’s all about how much valuable exposure you can bring someone else and it is for this fact that Brian France created ‘The Chase’.
Joyce Julius & Associates announced recently, a previously unknown to the fans rating system for France’s glorious creation, and that is; NASCAR Driver Exposure Rankings at the Start of The Chase. If that isn’t the most blatant revelation of what Brian France has done to the sport of stock car racing, I don’t know what is.
JJ&A is a bunch of brainless dweebs who sit around and wait for some big client (like NASCAR) to ask them to calculate, using special made up formulas, how much money they think they are getting (or is it saving….maybe bilking?) by making you constantly see or hear a mention of their product or service.
Given that criteria, JJ&A has all but crowned Kyle Busch this year’s Champion with ‘Ole Five Time’ a distant second. Rounding out the top ten are Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards, Brad Keselowski, Kurt Busch, Tony Stewart and Denny Hamlin.
According to the research, the full chart of which can be seen here , KyBu has netted his sponsors nearly 58 million dollars worth of exposure and intrusion into our lives. Never mind the fact that a lot of that is negative exposure (there probably is a formula or theorem that makes that into a positive thing). Oh, and don’t think about the fact that since the Chase was created, ratings and attendance have steadily dropped for years…yeah, that don’t matter! 58 million dollars is a lot of money!
And what does all this mean for NASCAR’s supposed ‘golden child’, Dale Jr.? Is Junior going to start feeling slighted that he is no longer the top dog? If it is a problem for him, maybe he can go see one of the fancy sport psychologists and get all straightened out.
All of this crap really sickens me. Is it any wonder that NASCAR is declining in fan interest and loyalty? Hasn’t NASCAR and/or many of its sponsors ever heard of “less is more”? Just because someone like JJ&A comes along and tells you what you want to hear, or more accurately, what you pay them to tell you what you want to hear, doesn’t’ mean that all is well. Get a clue! I swear, if NASCAR were a government and Brian France was its leader, there would have been a revolution long, long ago, followed by a first class hanging!
At any rate, as sick as a sign of what this sport has become that it is, I urge you to check out the link and read the full JJ&A report for yourself. Look, I know you have to have some sponsorship for this sport to work at this level, but really, it’s time to bring it back to levels of reality. Don’t buy a product just because its the official this or that of NASCAR, or your one particular driver. Use your OWN brain and buy or use it because it is a good product for the value.
Only when people start using the common sense God gave them can we truly take back this sport. This last few years, as the old cigarette ad used to say, I say to the fans; “You’ve come a long way, baby!” (Virginia Slims I think it was.) You HAVE spoken with your wallet, but we still have far to go.
Here’s to hoping that someday, I can stop bitching in this column and write about how nice everything is!
Hey, a guy can dream can’t he?
Stay off the wall (and off some quack’s couch!)
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