Race Weekend Central

NASCAR Mailbox: Bristol, Trucks, And Weather Gone Nuts

I have a confession to make: I’m addicted to social media.

Even when I’m not posting and updating my various blogs, pages, and, of course, tweeting, I’m usually perusing through the latest updates from friends, family, and just about anyone who will let me view their page. I love knowing what’s going on in the world and, probably more so, hate feeling left out. So when I’m quietly browsing Twitter and suddenly I see non-NASCAR or sports related accounts tweeting about Jeff Gordon, I have to take a closer look.

This week, a video with the four-time champion was sweeping the Internet, and everyone seemed to be getting quite a kick out of it. The video featured Jeff Gordon going to a used car lot while undercover, and taking a test drive in a Chevy Camaro. He then proceeds to give this supposed used car salesman the ride of his life by making all kinds of crazy maneuvers. It’s hilarious to watch the salesman’s reaction and, let’s be honest, the moves are awesome!

But, perhaps _too_ awesome. After all, Gordon may be a four time NASCAR champion, but that’s not the same thing as being a skilled stunt driver. Also, the way they immediately jumped in the Camaro even when Gordon said he didn’t want it was odd. As funny as it was, it just seemed too, well staged.

Turns out it was. The driving was done mostly by a stunt driver and around 75 people were involved in the project. It was staged.

However, it was still freaking hilarious and Pepsi did a great job by generating some buzz. If you still haven’t seen it, you can watch it \"here.\":https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=video&cd=1&cad=rja&ved=0CEIQtwIwAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dq02BXGDSDkE&ei=EihBUaHuHeTh2QXy_oGACA&usg=AFQjCNGDgwxrb6ykUddXHjz8DpcObwP4WA&sig2=wYjcdXK2N9h3XoUboU8_2Q&bvm=bv.43828540,d.b2I

Now, onto your questions:

_“What is the best thing and worst thing you like about racing at Bristol?”_ _Brian_

That’s hard to answer. Personally, I enjoy the fact that the cars are so close together. Bristol is about as close as you can get to a flushing toilet bowl. They can’t get “spread out” or have large gaps between cars. Even if the first place car is much faster than the second place car, he’ll still have lapped traffic to deal with. It makes the race fun to watch, and you never know what is going to happen.

However, the downside of that little racing room is that it’s extremely difficult to pass. It’s difficult to pass in the generation of cars that they had previously been racing as it was - though with this car, it remains to be seen. Add in a half-mile racetrack and very little racing room from the apron to the wall and suddenly you have a recipe for single-file racing. Though some reconfigurations to both the track and the car at times changed that, it’s still harder to pass at Bristol than, say, Texas, Kansas, or Atlanta.

<div style=\"float:right; width:275px; margin: 20px; border: black solid 1px; padding: 3px;\"><img src=\"http://www.frontstretch.com/images/10474.jpg\" width=\"275\" height=\"174\"/><p style=\"margin: 3px; text-align: left; font-weight:bold;\">Will a new car coupled with the reconfiguration from 2012 have an effect at the track that prides itself on \"Racin' the Way it Oughta Be\"?</p></div>

In fact, for the longest time, the only way to pass was with a technique known as the “bump and run”—which I hate. If the only way for you to pass is to knock the other guy out of the way, maybe you shouldn’t be passing. I’d rather see the drivers race based on skill than playing bumper cars. It just feels like we’re being cheated when that’s all that is happening.

Still, I prefer Bristol to mile-and-a-half racetracks and I’m really looking forward to this weekend. What about you?

_“Is NASCAR trying to fix the break between truck races? 6 weeks is far too long of a gap.”_ _Brian_

Yes, for those wondering, we did have two Brian’s with questions this week.

I agree that it’s too long, but right now even adding Eldora and Canadian Tire Motorsports Park was a complete shock. NASCAR really isn’t focused on giving the development series a full schedule when the other two series are racing all but two months of the year. I’m not saying they wouldn’t _like_ to, but it’s certainly not at the top of their to-do list. Based on their recent changes, it appears that adding diversity to the series and test driving ideas like dirt track racing and going across the border is more along their lines of interest.

Part of the gaps that we see in the schedule are NASCAR’s attempt to line up the beginning and the end of the season. Because there are so few races in the Truck Series as opposed to the others, there are bound to be gaps. However, I think it would be much more productive to maybe have an on again, off again schedule rather than “race, _gap, gap, gap, gap, gap_, race, _gap, gap_….” kind of schedule that we have now.

<div style=\"float:right; width:275px; margin: 20px; border: black solid 1px; padding: 3px;\"><img src=\"http://www.frontstretch.com/images/15437.jpg\" width=\"275\" height=\"183\"/><p style=\"margin: 3px; text-align: left; font-weight:bold;\">After intense superspeedway racing, the Truck Series puts it in park for almost two months. Time to tighten up the schedule!</p></div>

Hopefully this season goes well for the series and it eventually becomes a priority to add more races.

“Is it going to snow in Bristol on Thursday and over the weekend?” _Jeff_

Well I can’t say this for sure, but, no, the forecast shows it’s supposed to be sunny and in the mid-40s. It’s supposed to have snowed on Wednesday night, but otherwise there is no snow during the rest of the week or weekend.

The only day there is a threat to on-track racing is Saturday, when the chance of rain is 40%. However, it wouldn’t be a NASCAR weekend without a little bit of a threat from Mother Nature now would it?

*Connect with Summer!*
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\"Contact Summer Bedgood\":http://www.frontstretch.com/contact/28526/

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