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NASCAR rant: Not drinking the Daytona 500 Kool-Aid

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Bubbler, Feb 19, 2007.

  1. shotglass

    shotglass Guest

    I also believe the advent of "soft walls" made some of the drivers feel bullet-proof, which in turn leads to dumb driving.
  2. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Well-Known Member

    Untrue. Taken together, smaller engines and carburetor sizes (say, a 310CI engine and the 390cfm carb used in the Grand National North and West divisions vs. the current 740cfm carb in the Cub and Busch cars) would cut horsepower and speed numbers while leaving the engines with enough guts to actually race without running out of wind and forcing the drivers to just ride around.

    Formula 1 tried something like that when it first started experimenting with the safety car a few years ago. Basically, it turned from a race between cars to a race against the clock because while two cars might be wheel-to-wheel on the track, thanks to their intervals being artificially maintained by a computer they were actually several seconds apart. If I want racing decided by a computer I'll play NASCAR SimRacing or GTR, thankyamuch.
  3. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    Agree with you Bubbler - felt like I was watching one of those Olympic speed skating events where nothing happens until the last lap.
  4. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    As to your first point, the races at Daytona and Talladega are the highlights of the seasons to the fans, and cars aren't flying into the stands. No need to spend more money messing with new engines just for the superspeedways.

    As to the second, the way cautions are handled now are absurd and always has been. A driver dominating a race shouldn't be punished by a caution. There's no precedent for such stupidity. And I assume you'd like to go back to sending your stories from the road by telegraph. I'm sure you're not that much a technophobe.
  5. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Well-Known Member

    No, but I have worked for some. :D

    Seriously, dools ... It just doesn't make for a interesting race from the fan's point of view, nor is it workable from the driver's POV. What's the point of getting into a battle for position with another driver if you can't actually get the position until you're 15 seconds ahead of him? If you'd watched F1 in that era we wouldn't be having this discussion because you'd already know it just doesn't work from a practical point of view.

    And as to your first point, are you Brian France? That claim is bullshit and beneath you --- those teams have lots of money.
  6. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    Well, there's a difference between what's interesting and what's equitable. You should get credit for your dominance, and you shouldn't be penalized for someone else's ineptitude. Any other sport would be blasted for penalizing excellence in an analogous way.

    And there are a few teams that don't have that kind of money. Extra money should be invested in diversity and safety, not into changing something that the vast majority of fans don't think is broken.
  7. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Well-Known Member

    You can't interest people who aren't interested with a marketing campaign. Marketing is extremely overrated.

    As for your claim that a new engine formula for Daytona/Talladega wouldn't work because they'd need to build new engines ... um, they already build engines specifically for those tracks. It would be very little work to drop the displacement, either by altering the cylinder bore with a sleeve or the length of the piston stroke.
  8. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    Nascar is pretty much nothing but marketing. Anything that can take a moonshiner's pastime and turn it into mom and apple pie and pitchmen is not to be sneezed at for its marketing. And why do you think Nascar is not doing the engine thing you suggest, if it supposedly costs nothing more (and I don't really buy that)?
  9. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Well-Known Member

    Because the Frances don't want to mess with the golden goose. They love it, even though the drivers hate it.

    Ratings in and they're down more than a full point from last year, according to ThatsRacin.com (10.1 this year to last year's 11.3 on NBC). And the 500 didn't sell out until Saturday.

    So how is that golden goose doing exactly?
  10. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    The ratings drop was mainly because it did not last as long, clock-time wise, as last year's. And companies are not in the business of hiring pitchman out of charity. I'm not a big fan of NASCAR, but it's a hot brand that has built and expanded a loyal fan base -- despite a stupid-ass caution rule.
  11. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    I would be inclined to agree with Bubbler's entire post if I respected NASCAR all that much in the first place, but I've always found it kind of silly.

    It seems to me the best car/driver combo should win the race -- and that's how it works out in pretty much every other form of racing. (And yes, I'm a big-ass F1 snob.) The problem with that is that over a race distance the best car will probably work out a good sized lead and the finish will be anti-climactic.

    NASCAR doesn't like that, so it has turned its races into a one-lap lottery by bunching the cars and working like hell to make sure no one fields a car that's actually superior to another. The races remind me of the condiment races on the scoreboard at a baseball game (or sausage races, or boat races, or whatever else is out there.) People arbitrarily pick a favorite and then root like hell until one is randomly selected as a winner.
  12. dog428

    dog428 Active Member

    I'm missing the problem here.

    Yeah, the cars are bunched together. That's because pretty much everyone who stands to make a dime from racing figured out a long time ago that no one on the planet will watch a race in which the cars are driving in a circle all by themselves for four hours.

    All of this bitching about restrictor plate races is silly. What do you not like? The 87 lead changes? The fact that 20 drivers have a legitimate shot to win on the final lap? The consistent action throughout the race? I'll admit the big wrecks are a problem, but they're also a pretty big draw.

    There seems to be some crazy notion that NASCAR, by creating a set of ever-changing rules that even the field, is somehow damaging the integrity of the sport. It's not. The sport, like all sports, is entertainment. And it ain't entertaining to watch a guy win by a two-lap margin. The vast majority of this country could care less about the technological genius that allowed Ricky Bobby's car to go a full mile per hour faster than Cole Trickle's. They want to see bumping, banging and pissed off drivers.

    There's a reason this sport has grown by leaps and bounds over the past several years. And there's a reason that Talladega, Daytona and Bristol are the most popular races every year. It's the racing.

    And the last person I'd ever listen to while he bitched about the problems in NASCAR is a NASCAR driver. In the time it takes most of them to list their complaints, they've made another seven figures. Shut up, drive and cash the damned checks.

    Restrictor plate racing is just fine. It takes all the qualities of sport -- talent, preparation, endurance and luck -- and displays them perfectly. This is sports. The best athlete/car doesn't always win. The winner is the one that plays the complete game better than all the rest.
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