Race Weekend Central

Happiness Is… The DVR, Will Robinson, Not Mercedes & Long Beach.

One of the easy ways to fill space in a NASCAR column for the past couple years has been to debate the role of Cup drivers in the Nationwide Series. The oft-used comparison in this argument is that drivers who dabble in Nationwide are like Major League Baseball players dropping down into the minor leagues. First, let’s …

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Happiness Is… FOX, F1, California, and Points

This racing season is off to a fantastic start. Really. Two 12-hour races in Cup. The last three Nationwide races were won by Cup drivers. The Truck Series… wait, do they still race? Even Formula One is rolling hot with derision over its new six-cylinder engine and the lack of noise it produces. And INDYCAR hasn’t even …

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Happiness Is… NASCAR Fans, FOX, Kasey Kahne, and Phoenix

The Daytona 500 has become a strange affair over the past few years. Rain delays. Pot hole issues. The famed jet dryer incident. And now, another rain delay. The Frontstretch’s staff has debated whether or not the race was compelling — but hey, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. won! — and then the viewership numbers came in …

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Happiness Is… Daytona

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Happiness Is … Status Quo

Ryan Newman gave a scathing review of racing at Talladega Superspeedway, something that seemed an adrenalized version of earlier criticisms of the track. Since restrictor plates were added to the cars to reduce horsepower, racing at Daytona and Talladega has evolved into, well, take your pick: equalizer; crapshoot; fake racing; 150 laps of racing with a big crash to thin the herd; or an immensely entertaining race product. It doesn’t matter which option you choose, or if you go with a mixture of some of them. Restrictor plate racing is its own entity, and one that sits outside the normal parameters of racing where a talented driver with a strong car can distance himself from the field.

Happiness Is… NASCAR’s Newest Brand Of Racing Analysis

So Brad Keselowski ended Kyle Busch’s streak and Kevin Harvick stole one. That sums up the action from Richmond this past weekend, right? Whatever. That’s like saying that _The Sound and the Fury_ was a book about a family in the South. Here’s a look at something other than the winners from this past weekend.

*Happiness Is…Carl Edwards*

Edwards joined the broadcast team of ESPN in covering the Nationwide race this past Friday. In seasons past, he had come across as stilted and offered little in the way of commentary that was insightful or impactful. It had seemed that he was playing up to some kind of construct of what he thought an announcer should be, rather than being himself. Of course, who knows what the producer might be babbling in his ear during a race as well, but wooden and laconic are typically not attributes one aspires to in sports broadcasting.

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