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NASCAR credentials

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by rpmmutant, Jan 3, 2007.

  1. rpmmutant

    rpmmutant Member

    I just received my credential request form for the NASCAR race at California Speedway. If I am reading it correctly, it looks like there will be a restriction on the number of garage passes issued for the race. Plus, there will be a limit on garage access. This doesn't sound right to me. Shouldn't every credentialed journalist have the same access to the drivers and teams? Maybe I am overreacting a bit, but what I read sounds like only some will get hot passes, so they can go in the garage whenever they want, and others will only get cold passes, and be able to go in the garage when the cars are parked in their stalls. How do they decide who gets which pass?
  2. henryhenry

    henryhenry Member

    "friendly" media get the hot passes.
  3. FishHack76

    FishHack76 Active Member

    I went to my first race a few years back and before the hot pass. It seemed like everyone and his brother could get in the garage and the pits. I did a feature during a race when the hot pass was implemented and didn't get one. I basically had to sneak around and avoid getting kicked out, which is stupid. I would go to one of the NASCAR PR people and ask for a hot pass. That's what I ended up doing, and the guy was very helpful. He got me one pretty quickly, and it made my job a lot easier.
    I agree. I think if you're a credentialed journalist you should be allowed one. They still let everyone and their brother get a hot pass, and here I was working and didn't have one.
  4. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I can understand NASCAR and individual tracks not handing out hot passes automatically, as long as media needing one can get them quickly at a media front desk or some such way. That was how I got mine this year at the Brickyard.
  5. jay_christley

    jay_christley Member

    I've got no problem with it.
    Too many "hot passes" defeats the point of having them in the first place -- reduce the number of hanger-ons and autograph seekers in the garage doing nothing but gawking.
    It works as long as the track PR person is on the ball enough to issue them to real working media. As a writer from a small paper covering a half-dozen races in the northeast, I've never gotten a hot pass anywhere right off the bat. But there's plenty of work to be done when the garage is cold and I've never had an issue when I've gone up the track PR and said, 'hey, I'm writing on deadline, doing a notebook, covering the race, etc. ... Can I get a hotpass?'
    As long as they know you're actually there to do work and not get your Diecast signed, getting a hot pass at the track isn't a big deal.

    [Granted, I haven't been to every track, so I can't speak for PR gurus everywhere. But I've never had a problem up here.]
  6. RPM, ask for a hot pass and you'll get it no problem. NASCAR and the track staffs are trying to cut down on the hangers-on getting in our way on deadline. Our writers who didn't have one originally had no problem getting them at various sites.
  7. Jeff Gluck

    Jeff Gluck Member

    I would disagree that it's that easy to get a hot pass. It's more than just asking for one...working in Rocky Mount, NC was a different respect level and I only was given a hot pass about 60-70 percent of the time. It was very frustrating.

    Even at my current paper, it's occasionally been a hassle (ex: getting hot passes for our photographers is very difficult at times)
  8. Bubbler

    Bubbler Well-Known Member

    It's a stupid rule. Spare me the "yokels getting in the way" argument, it's a freaking garage area, not a locker room, you could credential 500 journalists and have more room than you would in a typical NBA locker room.

    And hot passes are easy to get if you have the connection to gain one (as I did last summer), but I knew some writers who had legitimate stories to work on who didn't have the connection and couldn't get one.

    You get more access in the freaking F1 paddock than you do at a NASCAR race these days. Another example of the erosion of NASCAR's once-intimate connection with its media and fanbase.
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