Let Them Fight!

LET THEM FIGHT!

Racing is an emotional sport. When you throw a half-mile, tight-cornered racetrack into the mix, the odds of drivers running into one another are very heightened. Once drivers start making contact, the anger and hostility are going to continue to ramp up. Add the intensity of battling for one of four spots in the finals at Homestead-Miami Speedway and you’re going to have very short tempers that will quickly escalate into potential fisticuffs.

The tempers reached that peak on Sunday evening at Martinsville Speedway in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, but the fisticuffs were fended off.

The fact that they were avoided and replaced by a giant, flopping love fest on the ground in the pits did nothing but leave hostile feelings that will most likely spill over onto the track in the near future. Some of the most memorable fights in the history of the sport, especially in recent years, took place on the track, not in the pits. That kept the teams and other people on pit road out of the mix.

Unfortunately, on Sunday, and most every time that drivers have a beef with each other, the teams got involved and no anger was released.

The sanctioning body will tell you it doesn’t want the drivers fighting on the track or in the pits — or even in the garage area — after the races. While it says that, it’ll be continually rerunning the footage of the altercation to hype up how intense the competition and passion is in the sport and especially the playoffs. The problem is, since no anger was released or resolved, these two drivers are still pissed off at each other. With two races to go before the championship night and both drivers deeply involved in the race to compete for the title, there is a great chance they’ll end up near each other and one or both of them may get wrecked, costing them a shot at being the series champion for 2019.

It is incredibly simple to fix this issue and not have the lingering hostility that spills over to the race track and ultimately results in torn up racecars. LET THEM FIGHT!

Sure, it is a neanderthal way of thinking and solving an issue between grown men, but it is the simplest and easiest way to let the parties truly involved burn off the frustration and ultimately end the dispute.

The biggest difficulty in making this work is keeping the teams and other hangers-on from jumping into the action. If they can be kept away the entire event can be quickly solved with some very simple procedures.

First off, the drivers are the only ones to participate in the altercation. If any other people enter the fray they are to be heavily fined and suspended for a month.

Secondly, once the fracas begins, the combatants are allowed to grapple and punch as often as they like until someone falls to the ground. Once an individual hits the deck, the NASCAR officials, and only the NASCAR officials, are to separate the individuals and lead them away from the scene.

If this process is put into place, drivers will no longer continue to let the ill will fester and irritate them into further anger and confrontation. It allows entertainment for fans and it ultimately prevents the teams from having to repair and rebuild multiple cars. It sounds overly simplified and archaic, but it is the easiest way to stop this absurdity.

One more thing.

LET THEM FIGHT!

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What is it that Mike Neff doesn’t do? The writer, radio contributor and racetrack announcer coordinates the site’s local short track coverage, hitting up Saturday Night Specials across the country while tracking the sport’s future racing stars. The writer for our signature Cup post-race column, Thinkin’ Out Loud (Mondays) also sits down with Cup crew chiefs to talk shop every Friday with Tech Talk. Mike announces several shows each year for the Good Guys Rod and Custom Association. He also pops up everywhere from PRN Pit Reporters and the Press Box with Alan Smothers to SIRIUS XM Radio. He has announced at tracks all over the Southeast, starting at Millbridge Speedway. He's also announced at East Lincoln Speedway, Concord Speedway, Tri-County Speedway, Caraway Speedway, and Charlotte Motor Speedway.

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9 comments

  1. Avatar

    OMG not another write up about the sissy fight! Another slow news week at FS….

  2. Avatar

    theres’s more physical action in an elementary school play ground that in that fight last sunday.

    GIVE IT A BREAK!

  3. Avatar

    Just keep the cameras away

  4. Avatar

    I agree! Let them fight! But do it in a manner which will bring more entertainment to the show! How about this… NASCAR rolls out a portable caged fighting ring to every race. If a driver is wrecked, bumped, or becomes angry with another driver due to contact or being raced in a disrespectful manner, he can call the other driver out over the radio on the cool down lap (or on the way to the garage if damage won’t allow the car to continue in the race) to settle it “in the cage”. The angry driver cannot wait until he gets out of the car to make the challenge – it must be before they come to a stop on pit road / in the garage. The driver who was called out then chooses; get in the ring and fight, or sit out the next race. The fight will be televised prior to victory lane celebrations in order to capitalize on the raw emotion before the drivers have a chance to calm down. Bouts will last 15 minutes or until one driver concedes the match or is knocked out.

    The fight will be judged and Playoff points awarded accordingly as follows;

    KO – winning fighter gets to take ALL Playoff points the knocked out driver has at the time of the fight.

    Conceding the fight after physical contact is made – Driver conceding the fight loses HALF of the Playoff points they had accumulated prior to the match to the other driver.

    Jaw-Jacking – if the drivers get in the cage and only argue WITHOUT physically attacking each other, BOTH drivers lose all Playoff Points accumulated up to that point. Pushing and shoving will NOT be considered a physical attack.

    Undecided winner – at the end of the 15 minute round, if there is not a KO or concession to determine the winner of the fight, Fans will text their vote in. The driver to gather the most fan votes in 5 minutes will be declared the winner of the fight and will be awarded 1/4 of the Playoff points the opposing driver had accumulated prior to the match.

    We can roll this out first. If it is successful, “Last Man Standing” cage fights between teams can be considered for future implementation to settle disputes that go deeper than just the drivers being angry at each other.

  5. Avatar

    Truex stunk this race up at Martinsville. But you get those, one time a race for the ages. Others, somebody runs off. Just the nature of the beast. As far as fisticuffs go. Let them go at it, somebody will get tired after awhile or one will be out cold. It’s just the two, no need to have 8 and 10 in on it. The drivers started all the shit, let them end it.

  6. Avatar

    Sometimes I just realize the issue at hand is myself. Why I watch a bunch of spoiled idiots get to make a living racing in a declining series and then get out of their cars slap fight one another on pit road is beyond me? Then, to make matters worse, I go and read about it in the days to follow; WTH is wrong with me?