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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Bowles-Eye View · Thomas Bowles · Monday May 19, 2008
I’ve got a knot in my stomach, and I just can’t get it out. It’s been 24 hours, and the All-Star Race has left me torn; as well as scratching my head in disbelief.
Winner Kasey Kahne can relate; well, to the disbelief part, at least. As Kahne celebrated his surprising victory into the wee hours of Sunday morning, he was also busy figuring out how the heck he went from Sprint Showdown failure to a million dollar success in the All-Star Race. A disappointing fifth in the Showdown preliminary event – far below the cutline to transfer into the “A” main – Kahne was preparing, in his words, “to grab a couple of Budweisers, run to the motorhome, and watch the All-Star race myself.” And while he’s one of stock car racing’s more recognizable names, on paper that’s how it should have been. The fifth-year driver’s last win came in 2006, and Kahne failed to either visit Victory Lane or make the Chase last season. This year, he has yet to score a Top 5 finish in a points race, let alone win; and without the accolades of a past championship under his belt, Kahne was destined for the sidelines instead of the spotlight.
That is, until the fans spoke up. Winning the ultimate popularity contest – a fan vote for those not yet eligible to compete in the All-Star Race – Kahne got his chance to transfer into the main event. And boy, did he have a million reasons to thank them when the 100-lapper was all said and done.
“The fans put us in, and hopefully we made them happy,” Kahne said. “Twenty-fourth to 1st, that’s the best that we can do.”
But was it the fairest thing NASCAR could have done for everyone else? Now, the Fan Vote to this point had always been one of Sprint Nextel’s best additions to the All-Star Race format. It allows you — the fans — to get directly involved, to choose an old favorite, usually an underdog, that you could both cheer for and honor by participation in the big race itself. But if you look at the list of previous Fan Vote Winners: Ken Schrader, Martin Truex, Jr. (before he was even a full-time Cup Rookie), Kyle Petty, and Kenny Wallace, none of them were in a position to scare the competition out of their shorts. It was a chance for fans to let these drivers know they were loved, to acknowledge their support; not an opportunity for them to sneak in and steal away the win from the guys that earned their way in the show.
With all that said, Kahne’s on-track performance was clearly up to par. Once he got into the All-Star Race, both he and his crew put themselves in position to make the most of their opportunity. Crew chief Kenny Francis made the call of the night by having Kahne take no tires on his final stop – giving them the track position to finish the night up front – but the No. 9 was one of the best cars on the “long” run virtually all race long. By the end of segment three, Kahne had gone from starting shotgun on the field (24th) to seventh, challenging for a position in the Top 5. Clearly, the Budweiser Dodge was a fast hot rod – it just didn’t have enough time in the Sprint Showdown before it to establish a position in the Top 2.
But that’s important; for under the rules of competition, the car wasn’t good enough at the right time to earn its place in the field the right way – a scenario that leaves NASCAR in a precarious position when it comes to credibility. Yes, the All-Star Race is all about entertainment. Yes, the fans should have some input into how a race tailor-made for them is run. But when does the line between fan support and statistical brilliance get blurred? It’s certainly not Kahne’s fault he made it in under the rules, but this much we know: the All-Star Race was a won by a guy who made the field not by athletic performance, but because a lot of women think he’s hot. And because of that, 23 drivers who earned their way in on merit –and Greg Biffle in particular — find themselves one million dollars poorer.
Certainly, an argument can be made that Kahne’s been more competitive than some of the past champions in the starting field Saturday night. But those men do have a Sprint Cup trophy to call their own, similar to the way all Masters champions in golf are given a special exemption based on past performance. While Kahne’s been a good driver, he hasn’t yet achieved that level of greatness; and that’s why he should have been on the outside looking in.
Until the fans provided him with the ultimate save, of course. Whether that was a save that should have been made is a matter of much debate; but no matter which side you’re on, it’s a bit of a shame to see what was one of the best races during NASCAR’s growth period get decided via a 1-800 number. In the modern All-Star Race, we don’t have checkers or wreckers; we’ve got a parade of pomp, circumstance, and popularity.
While you chew on that, I’ll be out searching for some Allstate girls and a pair of pink and purple pajamas. If I get a head start now, maybe I’ll be eligible in 2009 …
©2000 - 2008 Thomas Bowles and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
If you think KK’s fans are just a bunch of girls who thinks he’s a hotty, then go to GEM on Friday and you’ll see about 2:1 men… lotsa Bill Elliott fans pull for # 9 right on!
MMMM, so then what would you think if Jr. was not “eligible” for the All Star “race”, and fans voted him in????
Bet we would see a story on just how great it was to let the fans vote!!
“steal away the win”
I love when people say this. Who stole what?
23 drivers who got their way into the race on “merit” could not stop a driver who was voted in.
Anyone one of those 23 could have out raced him. Anyone one of the 23 other crew chiefs could have out strategized his team.
I could care less about him but if you ask me that is the perfect example of a winner. Takes an opportunity and capitalizes on it. Never quits, never falters, makes lemonade out of lemons.
He was a pinch hitter who stepped up to the plate and hit a grand slam. Good for him.
Bitter much? I’m glad the fans voted in a driver that was actually capable of winning the event. Kahne has been inconsistent during his young career, but he’s had more on track success than some of the guys who were locked into the event before the green flag flew.
I see a lot of male Kasey Kahne fans at races, so I’d not be so quick to blame women for the fact that he got voted in. Remember, he also got voted in without any of the shameless self promotion done in prior years by Kyle Petty and Kenny Wallace (at least Petty threw in the charity angle, but still), both of who are nothing more than back markers each week (due to equipment, not lack of talent). Truex got voted in simply due to his association with Dale Jr. If THAT was not a poor reason to vote somebody in, I don’t know what is.
Saying that “Kasey Kahne has nothing but his legion of fans to thank for being able to win this year’s All-Star Race trophy” is just mean spirited. He drove that car to the front and won the race with it. He can thank his crew, crew chief, and his talent for that win. And none of the drivers are “a million dollars poorer”..nobody is going into Greg Biffle’s bank account and taking out money.
what are you complaining about? if everyone involved agrees on the format, although they may not have a choice, hows it an issue if the fans vote wins. its like the guy on ‘pinks’ who loses his car. YOU signed on and knew what could happen !!! stop crying.
This was eventually going to happen and it’s the beauty of having fans dictate part of who is allowed to participate in a sporting event. You’re never ever going to get who “should” be in all the time because everyone feels differently. How many All-Star games was Cal Ripken voted into later in his career simply because he was Cal Ripken – no matter what his stats were?
Let me get this straight…It’s ok if we vote in a “feel good” underdog but not ok if the fans actually vote a team capable of legitimately winning the event? The rules are the rules – he got in. He won playing by the rules – got to the finish line first.
“it’s a bit of a shame to see what was one of the best races during NASCAR’s growth period get decided via a 1-800 number” Are you kidding me? The race was decided on the track. Kahne won by racing not by fan vote. Who had a chance to be in the race was decided by the fans.
Drivers race every weekend that didn’t earn their way in. What about all of the open wheel drivers who started races early in the season based on team points. The whole Kurt Bush trading his points to another team so a wanna be could make races. You want to talk about lack of credibility for NASCAR.
The All-Star race is nothing more than an entertainment event anyway. They keep changing the rules to get in who they want in. There was the “Richard Petty” rule then the “Dale Earnhardt” rule. The whole race is contrived to try to generate excitement. They should just follow Saturday night short track formats every week so you have to race your way into the main event. That would be exciting!
You think he won 6 races in 06 because of his female fans? You think he he won 2000 USAC National Midget Series Champion, 2004 Rookie of the Year, Midget driver of the Year and won his second consective “Night Before The 500 Classic” at Indianapolis, a feat achieved previously by only one other driver-Jeff Gordon because of female fans?. I don’t think so! I guess Kasey Kahne is more than just a pretty face, give the guy a break! Like it or not he passed every car on that track and won the race. He is the winner.
Bowles-eye View? More like Bowels-Eye View!!! Because that’s where you’re speaking out of here. So you believe that the fan vote should be a “retread” or “also-ran” with no chance to win the race? No offense to any of those guys—love all of them—-esp Schrader:)
That has to be, since no one has complained about this format since it was introduced 5 years ago.
And now, low and behold; the guy actually wins the race. Your anger should be directed at the JGR team (and others) who used this race as a test session—-the million-dollar prize just doesn’t motivate them anymore.
Also, everyone knew the rules; and supposedly, since this was a “winner take all” race—teams would take risks.
Kudos to 9, 48, and 11 for taking that risk; loved it when old DW said they would just be a roadblock—SOME roadblock! Not a huge kahne fan; but good for him and going out and taking a chance—-the same chance 21 other drivers had!!!!
Gee ..exactly what bothers ya about this …the fact the fan favorite won the damn thing ,or that ya couldnt write another KYLE busch is the greatest thing since sliced bread article ? I really loved seeing someone win who the media has all but forgotten due to the kyle busch craze !!
I have no problem with Kasey being voted in. He’s a proven race winner and a regular competitor. I think the worst vote ever was when the fans voted Kerry Earnhardt in several years ago just because of his last name. He was hardly an “All Star.” He had hardly been entered in any races at all and usually crashed out of the ones he was in.
And going one step further regarding what constitutes an “All Star”?
Under what guise did Jr. make the race? Officially, for something he did in 2000!!!!
I’m glad Kasey got the fan vote and won. However, the voting process needs to be changed. You can vote as many times as you want. I think one and done would be more fair.
Let me see if I understand you. Who we the fans vote in should be a driver that has no chance of winning the race. Is that what you are saying? So we did wrong by voting in a driver that can win a race? Maybe I should contact Sprint and ask them if those are the rules.
What a butthead article. This sport is supposed to be all about the fans and your walking on thin ice when you take on this kind of attitude. Almost as bad as Kenny Chesney’s post award remarks. It’s a prime example that, not only has this sport forgotten that the fans made it what it is, but the networks and print media are right in line. Right on Dennis @ 9:42AM. Also sparxmoore, when Busch blew up I had to pull my sunglasses down and wipe away a tear!
Wow … it’s been a long time since a column I wrote was so universally panned.
First off, congratulations to Kasey. It’s obvious by the collection of comments here that he’s got a lot of loyal, dedicated fans … and you’ve all made some great points.
I have nothing against the man. He won six times in 2006 and was a contender for the championship. He’s done a great job replacing Bill Elliott in the No. 9 car since 2004. However … his performance since 2007 didn’t allow him to make the All Star race on merit, under the rules.
I’ve been a fan as well as a writer since 1989, damn lucky to get paid doing this for a living. I know if my driver were still racing and he got the fan vote in and won, I’d be saying the exact same things you all are right now. But at the same time — even though the All Star Race is entertainment based — it brought attention to the fact the fan vote is the ONLY selection not based on merit for this race. And that’s something we can all agree on; it’s based on popularity. Because of that, it raises the age old question — which we have in other sports — should an All-Star event be selected based on merit or based on popularity, on who the fans want to see?
I’m of the school (very much in the minority) that you should select All-Stars based on merit — honoring the athletes that truly did have great seasons — and then create RULES fans LOVE that lead to a great race for the fans, for the drivers that truly earned their way into the All-Star show.
That’s nothing against what Kasey did on the track … he smoked ‘em! You guys are right — he totally won under the rules!
But I wonder if that fan vote rule should be there in the first place now. That’s why I brought up the other drivers — we never really realized this rule could lead to a driver winning the race until we voted in a driver who actually had a car capable of winning. And now that we’ve realized it … I just don’t know if the rule is right.
However, judging by the fan reaction on this column — and considering the All-Star Race is for the fans — maybe I’m dead wrong for suggesting it in the first place.
Thanks everyone for commenting!
Perhaps it would be easier to swallow if one looked at the name of the event more literally.
This is an All Star race, not an all merit race. Kahne is obviously a top five STAR in this sport and arguably top two.
One could also argue that having an All Star race without STAR’s like Kahne would be farcical.
A drivers MERIT, or lack thereof, is often just a matter of equipment.
But a star is a star.
Quoting you: “the All-Star Race was a won by a guy who made the field not by athletic performance, but because a lot of women think he’s hot. And because of that, 23 drivers who earned their way in on merit –and Greg Biffle in particular — find themselves one million dollars poorer.” You think Casey Mears and Juan’s gas mileage victories were oldskool merit. I went to my first race in 1959 on Daytona Beach. I’m oldskool too. Martinsville race was my 506 race in person! Why would Greg have more merit than KK? His victory last year was one of the biggest gifts I’ve seen in all my races!!!
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