Race Weekend Central

Mirror Driving: Killing the Competition Caution?, Brainstorming New Sponsors & Jimmie Johnson vs. Denny Hamlin… NOT!

After Sunday’s race, many people were looking for rivalry or animosity between Denny Hamlin and Jimmie Johnson – but didn’t get any. Are people making something out of nothing, or should there have been more emotion out of the drivers?

Voices from the Heartland: Pushing Through NASCAR’s Press Conference Daze About Nothing

Last week I reported, in part, about the press conference held at Lowe’s Motor Speedway that announced another press conference would be forthcoming in a couple of weeks. Oh, that’s right! They also named Ric Flair as the Honorary All-Star Race Director for 2009… but that was just a sideshow. Instead, at the time LMS officials dangled “the carrot of All-Star Race change” in front of a vegetable crazed-media but declined to comment further, presumably to let them stew a bit. After all, no good stew is worth anything if there ain’t a carrot or two involved! Well folks, it hasn’t quite been a couple of weeks, but the carrot has been lowered for the media to chew on, as the All-Star format changes were revealed yesterday.

Voices from the Heartland: Bailing on the Auto Bailout, Loving Las Vegas & Other Post-Vacation Thoughts

For the last two weekends, I have been in Las Vegas. The first weekend, I was there with my girlfriend and a couple of friends to take in the wonders of Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The second weekend, I was there for bowling – but that is a horror story for another publication. The good news is, the sunburn that I started at LVMS (and finished poolside during a short trip to the Los Angeles area) is turning into a nice tan, and I managed to make it home with a couple of Ben Franklins still in my pocket! In short, life has been good. This was my first time to visit Bruton Smith’s track in the Nevada desert and, I must say, it was a wonderful experience. The whole “Neon Garage” experience is well worth the money (for one day anyway) and offers the average fan many views and opportunities to get close to the action that they may not get to experience at other tracks.

Voices from the Heartland: Week 2 at Auto Club Speedway… Like It Never Even Happened

Everyone is talking about how boring the events (well the racing ones, anyway) are at California’s Auto Club Speedway; and quite frankly, I would have to agree. Of all the tracks that the Series races at, ACS is the last place I would ever visit… or even want to. Oh sure, I might go to one – if I were walking down the street in L.A., glanced down and found a free ticket lying on the ground – but that would be the only way. Oddly enough, I will be in L.A. shortly after the Vegas race, and I could see that happening – an unused ticket from a week and a half ago lying on the ground in the middle of the street. Wouldn’t surprise me a bit.

Mirror Driving: Discussing Michael Waltrip’s Surprise, Kyle Busch’s “Historical” Moment & Driver Responsibility

NASCAR has kept two races on the schedule at Auto Club Speedway despite faltering attendance and fan complaints about the quality of racing, claiming that it needs to have these dates in the California market. But is it really better for the sport to have a presence in certain cities than it is to provide a better product to the larger number of fans who tune in on television each week?

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