NASCAR Announces Modifications To NASCAR Hall Of Fame Eligibility And Selection Process
posted by Mike Neff
Thursday December 5, 2013
The Sanctioning Body Also Creates New Award For Outstanding Contributions
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 5, 2013) – NASCAR today announced a number of changes to the selection process for the NASCAR Hall of Fame (NHOF), including a modification to driver eligibility parameters and the creation of a new award to honor significant contributions to the growth and success of the sport.
In all, six changes and updates will be made starting with the selection of the Class of 2015 – all designed to improve upon an already strong process that has led to the selection of 25 deserving inductees.
“We’re very proud of how the NASCAR Hall of Fame has evolved and believe the first five classes reflect the strength of the nominating and voting procedures, with voices from every corner of our industry included in the selection process,” said Brett Jewkes, NASCAR vice president and chief communications officer. “Based on feedback from voters, industry leaders, media who cover our sport and the fans, we believe the changes announced today are a strong recognition of the uniqueness of our sport and will make the overall selection process even stronger in how we honor those who have driven NASCAR to great success on and off the track.”
Following is a summary of changes:
Currently, drivers who have competed in NASCAR for at least 10 years and been retired for three years are eligible for nomination to the NHOF. That will not change.
Moving forward, however, drivers who have competed for a minimum of 10 years and reached their 55th birthday on or before Dec. 31 of the year prior to the nominating year are immediately eligible for the NHOF. Also, any competitor who has competed for 30 or more years in NASCAR competition by Dec. 31 of the year prior to the nominating year is automatically eligible, regardless of age.
Drivers may continue to compete after reaching any of the aforementioned milestones without compromising eligibility for nomination or induction.
Nominating Committee Will Select Five Fewer Nominees for Enshrinement
Throughout its history, the NHOF Nominating Committee has selected 25 nominees each year to be discussed and voted on for NHOF enshrinement. That number will be reduced to 20 starting with the selection process for the 2015 class.
Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR
Beginning with the 2015 class, a new award – Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR – will be initiated to honor significant contributions to the growth and esteem of NASCAR.
Potential Landmark Award recipients could include competitors or those working in the sport as a member of a racing organization, track facility, race team, sponsor, media partner or being a general ambassador for the sport through a professional or non-professional role. Award winners will remain eligible for NHOF enshrinement.
Five nominees will be selected by the NHOF Nominating Committee and then be voted on by the Voting Panel. To win the award, an individual must appear on at least 60 percent of the ballots and no more than one award will be presented annually. Voting for this award will occur immediately following the voting for the NHOF class and be monitored by the same independent accounting firm that oversees NHOF voting.
Nominating Committee to Meet, Vote on 20 NHOF Nominees / Five Landmark Award Nominees
For the first time, the Nominating Committee will meet in person to discuss, debate and vote to create two ballots – the NHOF ballot and the Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR ballot. Previously, the committee submitted nominees via mail to an independent accounting firm that tallies the nominations in order to create the final NHOF ballot.
The Nominating Committee will meet during Speedweeks at Daytona on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, and the nominees for both ballots will be announced later that day.
Nominees To Be Recused From the Nominating / Voting Process
Any member of the Nominating Committee or Voting Panel who appeared on the previous year’s ballot or current year’s ballot will now be recused from participating in the nominating and / or voting process for as long as he / she appears on the ballot. If an individual who is currently on the Nominating Committee or Voting Panel is inducted, or is no longer included on a final ballot, he or she is immediately reinstated to active participation on the panel(s).
Reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Added To Voting Panel
As was already announced on Nov. 14 at Homestead-Miami Speedway during the annual NASCAR Championship Contenders Press Conference, the reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion will be added to the following year’s voting panel.
That means Jimmie Johnson, who captured his sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship, will be included in the selection meeting and can cast a vote for the NHOF Class of 2015 on Voting Day, Wednesday, May 21, 2014.
NASCAR Purchases Iowa Speedway
posted by Mike Neff
Wednesday November 27, 2013
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Nov. 27, 2013) – In a strategic move designed to expand its commitment to enhancing event experiences and fan engagement, as well as solidify the future of one of the premier racing and entertainment facilities in the Midwest, NASCAR announced today that it has purchased Iowa Speedway. The agreement, finalized today under a wholly-owned subsidiary, Iowa Speedway, LLC, is effective immediately.
“Iowa Speedway is a great entertainment facility with a very bright future,” said Eric Nyquist, NASCAR vice president, strategic development. “The facility has the support of the region, it’s positioned well in the heart of the Midwest, and year in and year out it provides great short-track racing action for motorsports fans.
“NASCAR ownership will allow us to draw on the entire resources of our company. It also provides us with the opportunity to execute first-hand a number of entertainment ideas and engagement opportunities with fans – much of which we have outlined repeatedly as the core of our Industry Action Plan.”
The facility, located 30 miles east of Des Moines in Newton, features a fast, .875-mile asphalt paved tri-oval designed by NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace. The Speedway released its 2014 schedule earlier this month, encompassing three weekends, one each in May, July and August. The schedule will include two NASCAR Nationwide Series races, a combination NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and IndyCar Series weekend, plus two additional NASCAR K&N Pro Series support races. NASCAR has no plans for Iowa Speedway to host a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race next year or in the immediate future.
NASCAR will host a special event in Des Moines on Thursday, Dec. 12, to outline additional details on the purchase and plans for the future. Information on this event will be announced soon.
The 2014 Iowa Speedway season opens May 17-18, with the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East versus West Challenge on Saturday night. The stars and cars of the NASCAR Nationwide Series then will battle on Sunday in a 250-lap, high-speed contest. The race marks the only Sunday afternoon event of the season at Iowa Speedway.
The new NASCAR Camping World Truck Series / IndyCar Series race weekend at Iowa Speedway is slated for July 11-12. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will race Friday night and feature short-track racing action that has become synonymous with the series in the American Ethanol 200. The first-ever Iowa Corn Indy 300 will follow on Saturday night.
On Friday, Aug. 1, a second NASCAR K&N Pro Series East versus West challenge race will be held followed by a second NASCAR Nationwide Series 250-lap event on Saturday under the lights.
Season ticket holders may renew their tickets for the 2014 season, and will have an exclusive right to secure their current seats until Dec. 14. All other seats are available for purchase immediately, with season ticket prices starting at $95. All season tickets will include a guaranteed seat location, complimentary Casey’s Fan Walk pass and an opportunity to participate in pre-race ceremonies. Season tickets, parking passes and onsite camping options are available online at www.iowaspeedway.com, or by calling the toll-free ticketing hotline, 866-RUSTY-GO (787-8946).
Iowa Speedway’s ticketing office, located at 3333 Rusty Wallace Drive in Newton, also will be open to assist customers from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, holidays excepted.
2014 IOWA SPEEDWAY EVENT SCHEDULE
Saturday, May 17 – NASCAR K&N Pro Series East vs. West Challenge
Friday, July 11 – American Ethanol 200, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Friday, August 1 – NASCAR K&N Pro Series East vs. West Challenge
Stewart-Haas Racing announces reorganization of their Competition Department
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday November 19, 2013
Stewart-Haas Racing is expanding to four teams in the Sprint Cup series for 2014. As a result, the organization is realigning some personnel into new roles within their competition department. The new assignments for 2014 include:
1) Greg Zipadelli has been named Vice President of Competition and will oversee all four Sprint Cup teams. The crew chiefs of the teams will report directly to Zipadelli.
2) Matt Borland has been named Vice President of Engineering. The role will involve Borland overseeing the organization’s technical initiatives and a myriad of research and development projects. As Borland moves into his new role he will become a mentor for the crew chief of the No. 41 Haas Automation team of Kurt Busch.
3) Race Engineer Daniel Knost is being promote to the position of Crew Chief for Busch’s No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet. Knost is an engineer with a Master of Science and PHD in Mechanical Engineering from VPI and Virginia Tech. Knost’s previous roles at SHR included running the team’s seven-post shaker rig, at-track race simulation support and race engineer for both the No. 10 and No. 39 teams.
4) Chad Johnston is going to take over the Crew Chief position for Tony Stewart’s No. 14. Johnston has spent the last three years as Martin Truex Jr.‘s Crew Chief at Michael Waltrip Racing. Johnston brings Hoosier roots to the organization like Stewart. He is a graduate of Indiana State University with a degree in Mechanical Engineering.
5) The Crew Chief for Kevin Harvick’s No. 4 ride in 2014 will be Rodney Childers. Childers moved to SHR in October of 2013 from MWR where he was a Crew Chief for the No. 00 David Reutimann and then the No. 55 for multiple drivers. Childers Crew Chief resume extends back to 2005 when he was the head wrench for MB2/MBV Motorsports with Scott Riggs.
6) Tony Gibson will remain on top of the pit box for Danica Patrick in the No. 10 car for 2014.
Steve Addington is leaving SHR for other opportunities. The word is he will be the Crew Chief for the No. 51, working with his good friend Kevin ‘Bono’ Manion.
2011 Daytona 500 Champion Trevor Bayne Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday November 12, 2013
Daytona 500 winner and Roush Fenway Racing (RFR) driver Trevor Bayne has announced today that he has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Bayne – 22 years old – has undergone extensive testing at the Mayo Clinic and has been cleared by doctors and NASCAR to compete behind the wheel.
“I’ve never been more driven to compete,” said Bayne. “My goals are the same as they’ve been since I started racing. I want to compete at the highest level and I want to win races and championships. I am in the best shape I’ve ever been in and I feel good,” added Bayne. “There are currently no symptoms and I’m committed to continuing to take the best care of my body as possible. I will continue to trust in God daily and know that His plan for me is what is best.”
In 2011, Bayne became the youngest driver in NASCAR history to win the famed Daytona 500. He is currently sixth in the NNS standings, having accumulated one win, six top-five and 20 top-10 finishes in 2013. He will compete again full-time for the NNS championship in 2014, driving the No. 6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang.
In 117 career Nationwide Series races Bayne has two wins, 18 top 5s and 50 top 10s with six poles. Bayne also has 45 career Sprint Cup series starts. In those starts he has the one win in the 2011 Daytona 500, one top 5 and three top 10s.
Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable disease of the central nervous system which interrupts the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and the rest of the body. Symptoms range from reduced or lost mobility to numbness and tingling to blindness and, in extreme cases, paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, and each person diagnosed with MS experiences the disease in a unique way.
Penalties Issued Following Sledgehammer Throw
posted by Phil Allaway
Thursday October 31, 2013
Last Saturday’s Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway will likely be best known for Darrell Wallace, Jr.‘s historic victory. However, late in the race, a crash involving Ty Dillon and Kevin Harvick, along with the pit road actions afterward, also made headlines.
Dillon got in the back of Harvick in Turn 2, spinning the Sprint Cup regular out, who then ran into the driver of the No. 3 Chevrolet. Dillon then responded with a number of unsuccessful attempts to spin out Harvick. When both drivers got to pit road, Harvick blocked Dillon’s stall and threw down his window net, prompting a scrum where a sledgehammer was thrown by a member of Dillon’s team at Harvick’s truck.
On Friday morning, NASCAR responded with penalties stemming from the pit road altercation. Marcus Richmond, crew chief of the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, has been fined $10,000 for failing to maintain control of his crew. Meanwhile, crewmember Adam Brown was judged by NASCAR to be the person who three the sledgehammer at Harvick and was suspended indefinitely.
In their press release, NASCAR cited violations of multiple sections of the 2013 Camping World Truck Series Rule Book. The sections cited were 12-1 (Actions Detrimental to Stock Car Racing) and 9-4A (Crew chief resumes responsibility for the actions of his driver, team owner, and team members in addition to himself).
There is no word as of yet from Richard Childress Racing as to whether they plan to appeal the penalties.
Marcos Ambrose to have new sponsor for Dover Cup race in September
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday October 29, 2013
The current economic environment has seen sponsors cutting back and even leaving the sport. Richard Petty Motorsports announced on Tuesday evening that they will have a new sponsor on the hood for the Dover Cup race and an associate sponsor for half of the season. Stanley and their associated brands Mac and Dewalt will also be back for 2014 on the No. 9 Ford for Marcos Ambrose.
Brian Moffitt, the CEO of Richard Petty Motorsports noted that the company is willing to run an alcohol sponsor on the No. 9 but will never do it on the No. 43. “Richard promised his parents that he’d never run an alcohol or tobacco sponsor on his car and that will hold true as long as we’re an organization.” When he was asked about how this came about he said, “This just kind of happened. There are relationships out there in the marketplace that are always talking with each other. We ended up going to Boston and having a discussion with the company and the next thing you know we are partners.”
Twisted Tea is a division of Boston Beer Company, most famous for the Samuel Adams beer brand. Jon London, the Boston Beer Director of Brand Development was on hand and loves the marriage between Twisted Tea’s customers and NASCAR. “We look at NASCAR and think that they, along with Marcos Ambrose, are just a great fit for the brand. Our drinkers love NASCAR and Marcos is a little bit different, our drinkers are a little different and Marcos is a lot of fun so he’s a great person to represent our brand.”
Moffitt also confirms that, while there are a few openings left on the 2014 calendar for RPM, both Ambrose and Aric Almirola will be back in 2014 and should have all of their races covered by the start of the season.
Darrell Wallace Jr. Scores Significant Victory at Martinsville
posted by Mike Neff
Saturday October 26, 2013
Darrell Wallace, Jr. etched his name in the NASCAR history book under two different columns on Saturday at Martinsville Speedway. Wallace took the checkered flag first to become the second African-American driver in the history of NASCAR to win a National touring series race, and the first to win a Truck Series race. He is also the second graduate of NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity to win a national touring race, following Kyle Larson’s victory at Rockingham Speedway earlier this season.
Wallace led a race-high 96 laps en route to his win. He led three times including the final 50 laps. Wallace outran Brendan Gaughan, Jeb Burton, Ben Kennedy and Ryan Blaney to secure his win. The average age of the top 5 at Martinsville was 23.8 with four of the five drivers being under 22 years of age. Wallace is the second non-Cup driver to win in a Kyle Busch Motorsports truck following Brian Scott’s win at Phoenix last season.
Hamlin Picks Up a Pair of Poles in Martinsville
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday October 25, 2013
Denny Hamlin will start on the pole for Sunday’s Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway after setting a new track record with a lap time of 19.013 seconds, good for a speed of 99.595 MPH. Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch ran identical second-place times of 190.61 seconds. Johnson will start on the front row after winning the tie-breaker, car owner points, where Johnson currently sits first. Busch will start third, and Matt Kenseth and Clint Bowyer round out the top 5. Joey Logano, Jamie McMurray, David Ragan, Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick complete the top 10.
The pole is Hamlin’s 17th in 288 races. It’s also his fifth of 2013, a career-best for Hamlin, whose season was interrupted by a back injury earlier in the year.
In all, 18 drivers broke the previous track record, set in the spring race this year by Johnson. Bowyer broke the 100 MPH mark in practice, but no driver was able to duplicate that in time trials. The Sprint Cup drivers will have a pair of practice sessions on Saturday before Sunday’s 500-lap event.
Seven Chase drivers qualified inside the top 10, and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Carl Edwards clocked in in 12th and 14th, respectively. Other Chase drivers include Ryan Newman (17th), Kasey Kahne (25th), and Greg Biffle (33rd).
Hamlin wasn’t done after his Sprint Cup qualifying effort. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers took their time trials after the Cup teams had their shot, and Hamlin duplicated his earlier effort, snagging the pole for the Kroger 250 in the No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports entry. Johnny Sauter, Darrell Wallace, Jr., Ron Hornaday, Jr., and Ty Dillon round out the top 5 for Saturday’s race.
2014 Camping World Truck Series Schedule announced
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday October 25, 2013
NASCAR announced the 2014 Camping World Truck Series schedule today at Martinsville Speedway. The series will run 22 events in 2014 starting at Daytona on February 21st and concluding at Homestead on November 14th. The schedule includes stops at New Hampshire Motorspeedway and Gateway Motorsports Park next year. The series will once again turn right and left at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park along with slinging mud for the second consecutive year at Eldora Speedway.
2014 Camping World Trucks Series Schedule
Feb 21 Daytona
Tweet Lands Another Driver In Trouble
posted by Phil Allaway
Thursday October 24, 2013
NASCAR announced on Wednesday that Corey LaJoie has been placed on probation after posting an inappropriate tweet on Twitter last week. He will have to attend sensitivity training as prescribed by NASCAR.
In their statement, NASCAR stated that LaJoie is being penalized for “an insensitive and intolerable communication” posted on Twitter on October 15. The tweet, which has since been deleted, suggested that the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) should conduct a cavity search on a man wearing a turban.
Wednesday afternoon, LaJoie tweeted out a statement.
“I am very sorry for those offended by my recent remark,” LaJoie tweeted. “It was an immature & insensitive comment. I am upset with myself and how this has affected what has been a very positive year in my career.”
This incident marks the second time this season that NASCAR has penalized a driver for comments on social media. Earlier this season, Nelson Piquet, Jr. was forced to attend sensitivity training after using a homophobic slur in the comments section of an Instagram picture that Parker Kligerman posted.
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Full Throttle - Special Edition · Matt McLaughlin · Monday August 27, 2007
Editor’s Note : Mike Neff’s Full Throttle will be posted on Thursday this week instead of its regularly scheduled Tuesday slot. Instead, enjoy a special extra commentary from Matt McLaughlin in Mike’s place.
It seems I am in the minority about the “new” BMS – I actually enjoyed Saturday night's Cup race, a drowning voice in the face of mounting criticism against the track. What I saw throughout was a lot of two and even three wide racing, along with passing throughout the pack. Yes, two cars – the No. 9 and the No. 99 – dominated the race, but keep in mind that Matt Kenseth led 415 laps en route to his win in the 2005 Bristol night race. So, such domination is not without precedent even at the old Bristol.
Still, many fans and even some members of the media proclaimed Saturday night's race at Bristol "boring" (or worse). In fact, many feel the night race has been ruined. So what, if anything, went wrong? If we set the 1999 Bristol Night race and Dale Earnhardt's now legendary "Rattle his Cage" pass of Terry Labonte as the highwater mark, what has changed since then? Well, the cars themselves are now rid of the hideous new CoT design, the track surface was changed to parabolic banking, Goodyear bought a brand new tire to Saturday night's race, and the focus on where drivers are in the point standings has changed to the Chase, which likely loomed large with the "playoffs" only two weeks away at the beginning of the event.
Let's look at all four elements. Many drivers commented that the new Goodyears were not soft enough to allow for hard racing. I'm sure there's some truth there, because the tire test at the new track was canceled by weather. As such, Goodyear bought a very conservative tire to the track to make sure there was not a rash of tire failures, just like the debacle of the Charlotte race after the track was levigated.
Along those same lines, Goodyear has suffered some very embarrassing incidents, with tires prone to frequent blowouts that cost them a lot of face. Because of that, they now tend to be conservative. If the race is boring, that's OK…just so long as their product isn't failing left and right on nationwide TV, giving potential customers a less than rosy picture of the company's technology. Now, with a race under their belt they can probably bring a more aggressive tire to Bristol next time; that might allow for better racing. But it's hard to pin too much of the blame on the tires, because the same tires were used in Friday night's Busch race and that race was an instant classic.
I'm not ready to point a finger at the new track design. In fact, I love how it turned out. I am a big fan of side-by-side racing, and there hasn't been much of that at Bristol for a decade. It was the new track design that allowed that "fans on their feet hooting and hollering" finish on Friday night. No, we're not even going to blame the track for this one.
So, the biggest difference between Friday night's Busch race and the Saturday night Cup event were the cars. The Busch rides were old school, while Saturday's race featured those decidedly awkward, to the point of being homely, Cars of Tomorrow (by the way, Rusty, that's the correct use of the plural) with their comically oversized rear wings. Once again, the old school cars provided much better racing than the new cars. “But, Matt, the Busch cars are less powerful too,” you say. I agree. The level of horsepower has reached insane levels in the Cup series. It's time to dial that back a bit. So in my eyes, the new cars were the main culprit in why Saturday night's race paled in comparison to Friday night's, and that doesn't speak well towards what's going to happen next year when the new cars become the series’ full-time mounts.
I also have to assign a lot of the blame to the new Chase points systems. Some drivers, Gordon, Stewart, Kenseth and Hamlin are already locked into the Chase, so they could run the ragged edge with no worries. But for other drivers who could still at least mathematically be eliminated, they had to drive much more conservatively. Bristol is a dangerous place, and a small misstep can leave a driver climbing from the smoking wreckage of an irreparable car and leave him with a finish in the 40s. Among the group that couldn't get too wild Saturday night was Kurt Busch, a master of Bristol. He might have been able to get up there to challenge Kahne and Edwards if he had free reign. So, in my mind, the new points system concocted to make racing more interesting actually conspired to make Saturday's race less exciting. The Chase from its inception has been fatally flawed and that's been borne out every season it has been in place. The much hoped-for TV ratings bonanza didn't occur – in fact, ratings are actually declining. It's a time to admit this dog won't hunt and replace it.
Given a little weathering and a somewhat softer tire – the first occurring naturally and the second gradually – I think we're due for more classic races at Bristol. And if NASCAR finally drops these failed CoT monstrosities, along with the Chase, things could get even better faster. Meanwhile, if you really can't live without a constant series of wrecks, there's always the local demolition derby.
©2000 - 2008 Matt McLaughlin and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
I’m with you Matt (wrecking is NOT racing), except that I’d reverse numbers 3 and 4 on your list. I’d gladly accept the new car, stupid wing and all, if it meant the chase were abolished.
I’ve read an awful lot whining about the changes NASCAR makes ruining the racing from supposedly old school fans. All I can say is “ You want some cheese with that whine. What the hell old school do you come from? 1998?
I’m 44 and I’ve been a NASCAR fan since I was about six. On top of that I’m a native of God, do I say it, California. For all you Southern by the grace of God fans out I can remember the ABC Wide World of Sports and Car and Track shows from when they were first broadcast.
Back in the day, There were no restrictor plates so Daytona and Talledega separated the men from the boys. Let me tell you Petty-Pearson duels WERE RACING! Bristol was a multi-groove race track like, hey, it is again and the cars were about the same shape as ones you could buy at your local Chevrolet, Dodge or Ford dealership. Something the COT is closer to than the old car.
Back in the day it freqently happened that one team hit the set-up and wasted the field. Fans expected it and excepted it.
My point to this rant is this: It’s time to realize and get over a few things
1.) the COT and the Chase are here to stay. (I too don’t mind the COT as much as the chase.)
2.) Wrecking isn’t racing. If your there to see the “Big One” you’re not much of a racing fan.
3.) Bristol is back to where it was in the pre-concrete days, a multi-groove race track not excuse to play bumper cars it’s been for the last 15 years or so.
4.) People that whine about the ruination of the sport ought know their history a bit better before they run their mouths lest they get called on it.
The ruination of NASCAR isn’t the COT or the Chase, it’s the loss of places like North Wilkesboro and Rockingham for second dates at places like Texas and Loudon. The lost of the Southern 500 to California was wrong too. If a Californian can figure that out why can’t the rest of you.
I totally agree with you, Matt! People who want to see just beating, banging and wrecks aren’t real race fans in my book. Bristol was SO much better when it was asphault, so I’m happy that they finally have multiple grooves back.
My reason for saying the race at Bristol was boring had more to do with the television coverage than the actual race. I was all hyped up for the Bristol night race, like so many others. I got a good table at my local watering-hole and sat back for what I expected to be a great race. And it very well could have been if I weren’t subjected to commercials every 6 to 8 minutes. By the middle of the race, the tension in my little home-town bar could be cut like a knife every time ESPN broke race coverage to do more, and more and MORE advertising. So yes, I’m sure the race was great for those folks who were at Bristol. For the countless millions of people who had to watch it on TV, well, it was a major disappointment to say the least.
in my opinion (worthless as that may be to anyone but myself) the racing with the COT (at Bristol, or anywhere else) has been significantly better than it has been in recent years. I look forward to the teams getting more familiar with the car. I look forward to Goodyear bringing a better tire to tracks. I don’t blame Goodyear for bringing a conservative tire. They had valid reasons. But, they should have enough data now to bring a much softer tire next time.
I love the chase format. I still say (even with the increase) that the number of points for a win is too low. The bonus points for a win was a good idea. If you added a bunch more as a not-bonus, it would be even better. The points for a win (vs. 2nd place) need to be high enough, in the current example, for the 12 or 8 to be really pushing for wins.
I think you can easily attribute 95% of any “passivity” at bristol to the tire, and the fact that the point system still promotes “not losing” more than it promotes “winning”.
Just in case I muddled it: I’d much rather see bristol as it was this weekend, then as it has been for many years previous. Better Racing = Better.
Some fans are real morons and dont know what good racing is wait untill we come back here in the spring with a soft tire your going to see a record number of lead changes
No, I don’t agree. The race was boring, the television coverage was atrocious, and the cars and tires are probably to blame. Wrecking is not racing, but the thrill of Bristol is the close racing, the bump and runs for position, and one driver not stinking up the show. The lack of yellow flags was odd and probably added more to the domination of the race than the track or the cars. However, the night race at Bristol is what I wait for every year and a ticket I covet. Watching cars run around on a conveyor belt is boring, bad television, and definitely not something I’ll pay a fortune to see in person. With the COT, the chase, the crapy tires that Goodyear has been providing, the new rule of locking in the top 35, and Nascar’s continued inconsistencies, the season has been unfortunate. I don’t agree with most of you about the new surface. And the COT stinks too. Just to add some excitement to the series, I hope AT&T buys Sprint/Nextel and kicks them to the curb. Now THAT would be a ticket worth buying. Don’t forget folks, look for the “11th Circuit Court of Appeals 500” to be added to the schedule next year.
Annie, you are a hoot..I’m lmao!!!
The problem, Matt, was that too much of the side-by-side racing was being done in front of the leaders by cars about to go a lap down. Not much fun watching rolling roadblocks for lap after lap.
The race “coverage” by ESPN is a big part of the problem. Rusty needs to stray off the corporate line and talk racing. for the majority of the Bristol race you wouldn’t have even known that Tony Stewart was in it. They spend all their time talking about and showing Jeffy G, Jimmy J and Juany Pa_blow M.
your high Matt! put the pipe down along with all your little followers here. You want side by side racing go to Atlanta. This is Bristol baby! and demolition derby isnt racing but it sure is fun to watch some raw emotion afterwards, but King Brian is taking care of that and turning everyone into a drone or a cardboard cutout corporate pc mouth piece. Thank god for the Tony’s and Robby’s. Side by side racin is ok but this race lacked the real rubin which IS racin at Bristol. You wanna watch a race where the drivers dont have to be tough and really have the balls, determination to win and skill with a strong car, go watch your kids race go karts and craigs cruisers. What you say? you want the horsepower reduced in Cup cars? get out of town and put the pen down. you have no business writing for motorsports. Bring back the 70’80’ and even some of the 90’s and get rid of chumps like this guy Matt.
The people to blame for the Bristol race are the fans. More specifically, the expectations of the fans. Wrecks and punting and the like. Having been to Bristol, this year’s night race installment was far superior to last years. Watching a bunch of cars play follow the leader isn’t fun at the local dirt track, and it isn’t fun at Bristol. Cars could run high and low, which is a far improvement on the last decade. So a couple of guys hit the setup; isn’t that what racing is about? Knocking cars out of the way is NOT racing; just ask Jeff Burton or Mark Martin; it requires no skill or tact. The new Bristol is much improved; just wait till the tires and lack of rolling the center are fixed. Now if they’d just bring back the Rock or the Southern 500…
I agee with this article. The difference in the race is the CoT and the Chase. With the CoT being so new, you are going to get teams that will hit the setups correctly while the rest of the field struggles. That is exactly what happened Saturday night. Add to that the new racing surface, which is usually not its best when brand new, and the Chase and you had what we got on Saturday.
Next year, I would bet that this race will be better because more teams will have a handle on the setups and the track will be more seasoned. The Chase aspect won’t change, so that will be a factor.
In any case, the ‘bump and run’ isn’t necessary for good racing. As a matter of fact, it is BETTER racing when the passing is better without it. By the way, I read a stat that there was double the passing in Saturday’s race than we saw the year before. What’s boring about that?
Sure you can laud the side-by-side racing. I think the difference is someone who has been around the sport for years and all these new fans. The former hate the new Bristol; the latter think its great.
The problem with the new surface is THE CARS DON’T HAVE TO INTERACT. The place is like a mini-Dover where the cars can just go around and around, with so many grooves that it doesn’t matter. The old Bristol, with one basic groove, mandated that the cars had to interact since they all wanted — and needed — the same piece of real estate.
Not to sound like an old fogey, but NASCAR is going down the toilet. Cookie-cutter two-mile tracks, while the drop shorter, interesting tracks like North Wilkesboro.
The biggest improvement NASCAR could make is to reduce the end-of-the-season money and spread it out to the weekly races. Make going for the win (or position) each Sunday the most important thing, not stroking for a “good finish” to get year-end money.
The race wasn’t all that bad..this was, maybe still is the one race a year I love as it is what many of us were brought up on..good ol’ short track racing..most of us don’t have a 1.5 mile track around us. Sadly of course NASCAR in their wisdom feel that short tracks aren’t what sells..(even if Bristol is always a packed house..). Anyway..if I was to say there was one issue that not only hurt Bristol racing but NASCAR racing in general would be the Chase…teams are so worried about making the Chase very few are sticking their necks out to push themselves..on the flip side teams not in the Chase don’t want to be known for driving agressivly against a guy in the Chase as the end result may be knocking the guy out of the Chase. With the Chase and the top-35 rule you will never see the duels like Petty-Pearson of yesteryear..France/NASCAR has pretty much turned NASCAR into a politically-correct, vanilla-make-no-waves sport.
Count me in your crowd, Matt: I was blown away by the improvement in the racing at Bristol. Too many people are judging it based on the TV coverage (who’s up front + Junior + Gordon) of a single race – forgetting that there’ve been stinkers at Bristol, too, once you count out the wrecks.
The big thing to remember is that as the cars evolve, the tracks need to evolve too. The cars eventually outgrew the 24-degree asphalt Bristol, and they finally outgrew the 36-degree mixed-pavement Bristol, too. SMI seems to have a pretty good handle on the concept. Don’t you wish ISC would finally learn this lesson as well?
Bristol was boring, and yes there are multiple factors. I really dont care about all that. I as a fan, just want to be able to enjoy a good old school race. I like the beatin’ and a bangin’ !! Thats what Bristol has always been about…remember thats the slogan, raceing the way it ought to be ! And YES the Commentators are terrible. Good lord, I liked rubber head as a driver, but there is a reason they called him rubber head, and Petree well I loved it when he was with Dale…..Together they have the same effect on me that Lunesta does, without the cost…zzzzzzzzzzzzz. wake up Nascar, your TV ratings are going down the tubes….the racing is BORING, BRISTOL has been thee only bright spot for some of us diehards and now that appears to have gone by the wayside as well !!! MIGHT AS WELL BE ANOTHER MILE OR HALF MILE RACE !!!
I agree 100% with some of the fans who disagree with ya, Matt. This race was flat out boring and it’s a combination of several things. Goodyear’s horrible tire, ESPN’s coverage or lack thereof, and the new track. I miss old school racing at Bristol. You beat and bang for position and that’s the nature of the beast. It’s down and dirty let’s settle this between ourselves, not the fabricators in the shop and aero guys. It’s practically a glorified California now. But then again the new fans and corporate heads would love this!! It’s like F1 but you can pass. Team orders, Thew new CoT, resurfacing every track on the surface bc it’s a little too hard for the boys to drive…man it’s getting ridiculous anymore.
“Bristol=practically a glorified California now” says Hank!!!!!!!! Hahahaha. I’ve never heard a lamer opinion than Hank’s. Some people are a joke.
yeah because we all know you’re right and everyone’s wrong. Have fun watching boring races :-D kthxbai
Think racing is getting boring? Television coverage sucks? Wait till 2008 when this Piece Of Crap COT walks, not RUNS, at Daytona and Talledega. No need for restrictor plates, these barges will be running like there’s an incoming tide.