Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Nationwide Series car? Here's a spoiler

Catching up, in a midweek sort of way:

  • A Nationwide Series crew chief told us on the Sirius NASCAR Radio show I do weekday mornings that some teams have already been given previews of what the new car for that series is going to look like. The Nationwide car will be built on the same chassis as the Cup Series car of tomorrow, but the bodies will be different. And, at least right now, the Nationwide cars will have spoilers and not wings. The new car will be in use in the Nationwide Series in 2009.
  • The season's final Cup statistics are done and the top 49 drivers in points all won at least $1 million. The top 42 all won at least $2 million. Bill Elliott was the sport's first $2 million man back in 1985 when he won the $1 million bonus from Winston and took home $2,383,186 as the runner-up to Darrell Waltrip, who was the first champion to top $1 million with $1,318,375 that same year.
  • Jimmie Johnson won twice as many races this year as he did last year and repeated as champion. But he won more money in 2006 -- about $560,000 more. A big reason for that is that he won the Daytona 500, NASCAR's richest race, in 2006.
  • When the space shuttle Atlantis goes up Thursday, it will carry three racing flags. When those flags come back to earth, one of them will be given to winner of the Daytona 500, the Daytona 500 Experience (formerly Daytona USA) will keep one and NASA will keep one.
  • I gripe about travel a lot, I know, but I have to admit I sort of enjoy the game of trying to get around the country to cover NASCAR races without spending any more of the company's money than I really need to. You find a decent hotel room about five miles from the track for a race next fall, on the side of the speedway away from which most of the traffic comes in, for $71 a night. You reserve a car for two weeks out of the Orlando airport for half what it would cost if you rented from another company that's basically under them same corporate umbrella. It's annoying, though, when you can buy an airline ticket for a trip to Las Vegas that connects through an airport for $300, then come back and try to buy a ticket to get off the plane in that same airport for a race there and they want $500. It costs $200 more to NOT keep going? How does that make sense?


Monkeesfan said...

First of all, the constant changing of sponsors shows why the media needs to use generic names for series as well as racecars (i.e. Petty Dodge, Hendrick Chevrolet, etc.) Call it the Sportsman Series, which is what it originally went under.

Second, these new Sportsman Series cars - will they have the closed airdams of the old cars since they're running spoilers, and will they keep the roof wickers?

Anonymous said...

So monkeesfan,

As a business you are attracted to spending your $$$ on a car or series that will only be seen by the fans at the race track????

It'll never happen. NASCAR perfected sponsorship long before other sports.

I would support however calling it the Sportsman Series presented by Nationwide to give it some consistancy. And why not compete for the Petty Cup or the Jim France Cup.

Monkeesfan said...

trading paint, where are sponsors denied publicicy if the media uses generic race and series names? NASCAR perfected sponsorships and sponsors got all the exposure they could hope for when the media refused to give them airtime freeloading via endless plugs. Call it the Sportsman Series. As for the Cup, we can call it the Grand National Championship.

Anonymous said...

How very typical of the non-sense monkeesfan (a/k/a mike daly) usually posts.

So... you ask how if generic names are used a sponsor loses out? Is that your question?

Here's how... how many new reports, blog posts, media headlines, radio reports etc, etc have you read and seen that contained refs to NEXTEL/SPRINT or Busch/Nationwide?

With supreme confidence I'd bet it numbers in the thousands.

Each time a sponsors name is mentioned its sponsorship gold.

Would YOU as the CEO of a multi-national/multi-billion dollar company invest anywhere from $4 million (approx for the NCTS) to $20 million per year to NOT have your companies name and logo plastered all over each and every mention of the series you spent money on?

If you answer in anything but the affirmative you're more delusional than I ever thought.

Monkeesfan said...

And it's all irrelevent, marc. The sponsors lose nothing when the media use generic names. They get all the exposure they need by sponsoring the racecars, buying TV commercial time, etc. When a spoonsor's name is mentioned, it's not gold, it's overkill. We know who they are, what car they sponsor, what race they sponsor, and so on - we don't need to have it rammed down our throats. The media can use generic names and sponsors will not lose one dollar from it. They can't lose money from not getting airtime freeloading.

CEOs would indeed spend the money to sponsor racecars etc. even if the media used generic names, because they get the exposure they want anyway. That's what happened when CBS never used sponsor names in all the years they covered the sport, when the media refused to use the sponsor name for the series and instead called it Grand National, and when everyone else in the media didn't overkill it with airtime freeloading.

It's not delusional, marc, it's the truth.


Anonymous said...


Marc is right on... like it or not, without sponsorship NASCAR doesnt exist, or its at least a small regional racing circuit that is struggling to survive.

Belive it or not, corporations who are throwing millions into any professional sport know what they are doing - they have tons of marketing data to back it up. No company spends that kind of money without data to support it, and in fact it works. You may not think it works, but again, as I have always said with your rants, just because YOU believe it to be true does not make it so. Fact is there are thousands of NASCAR fans who use Nextel/Cingular/AT&T, drink Budweiser/Miller Lite, shop at Home Depot/Lowes, eat Little Debbies, etc because of the sponsorships. Well done sponsorships sell among all racing demographics, and NASCAR fans are some of the most supportive sports fans out there. Most of us recognize the importance that a good sponsor (i.e. money) has on our own particular driver. Without supporting of the sponsor, those much needed dollars will go elsewhere, and with it, our driver/team suffers. Well done sponsorships include an element of 'ramming it down our throats', the more exposure they get the better it is for their outcomes (i.e. sales). There is really no such thing as bad PR, some of the smaller team sponsors dont mind when their drivers car wrecks or blows up, as it may be the only time they get TV exposure all day (how often do you hear the Ward Burton State Water Heaters Chevrolet mentioned when something bad isnt happening?). How many people STILL call the Nextel/Sprint Cup the Winston Cup? Thats a sponsorship deal that is still paying dividends to Winston. How long will it take people to stop calling the Nationwide Series the Busch Series? For some, possibly never... and thats what the companies are paying for! Its basic marketing 101, anyone who has taken that class understands that, and its a basic concept because it works.

Yes, Monkeesfan, you may long for the 'good old days' of NASCAR, but face it - like it or not, they are long gone, never to return. My suggestion to you is to forget about NASCAR, as its obvious you never really have anything good to say about it, and focus on your local short tracks that seem to have everything you wish NASCAR had.

Monkeesfan said...

nh_nascarfan, you forget that NASCAR was a "small regional racing circuit" and it got sponsors who were never mentioned on telecasts for some twenty or more years yet got the exposure they wanted anyway.

You point out the loyalty fans have toward sponsors, which only further proves my point that the sport does not need to plug them on the air very much, if at all. Using generic names carries zero threat to the sport.

BTW, I attend local tracks quite often during the season, but being a superspeedway fan I don't give up on Grand National. The "good old days" may be gone, but a lot of what made them work then still works now.

Anonymous said...

Monkeesfan, you are correct - to a point. In the old days, when they were a small regional racing circuit, they had sponsors - but there was very little TV to mention them. With the big TV contracts, Direct TV pass, Sirius radio, MRN, internet, etc, the numbers of fans watching has jumped significantly, meaning that the value of the sponsorship has gone up as well. Nobody would have ever thought of paying $20 million/year for a sponsorship back in the 70s/80s, but now those numbers are commonplace. The economic reality is that in order to compete at this level, those numbers need to be that high in order to pay the bills. Its no wonder teams like Hendrick are as successful as they are when they have the levels of sponsorship that they do, while single car teams with one low budget sponsor dont stand a chance.

I never forgot that NASCAR was once small, I have just moved on with the times and realized that they are no longer what the used to be, they are what they are... and I can either love it or hate it, and I choose to love it. I love being able to watch every race, to tune into Direct TV and follow my driver, to be able to sign online and follow the telemetry real time... these are things you wouldnt see without the big buck sponsors footing the bill. I love the Hooters series as well, but you just dont get the exposure you do in Nascar, and that is directly related to the amount of dollars pumped in to the sport.

I agree with you on the superspeedways, and there isnt a better way to spend a Saturday night at a local short track.

Monkeesfan said...

nh-nascarfan, at first there wasn't much TV to cover the sprot, but TV grew and grew, and sponsor plugging didn't become out of control until the latter 1990s - more often sponsors were seen, not heard, on telecasts, and they got the exposure they wanted regardless.

The premise that TV has to mention sponsors names for them to get exposure is ridiculous. We know who they are, what they sponsor, etc. They can get away with generic names and the sponsors will not suffer.

Anonymous said...

Yes but thats what adds value to the sponsorship... like it or not, calling it the 'Nextel Cup' thousands of times per season adds value to the sponsorship as opposed to using a generic name. If the networks start using generic names on a regular basis, the value suddenly goes down and corporations arent going to be throwing money into the sport the way they have been. Is that a good thing? Who knows, a very real argument could be made that it would allow smaller, single car teams to compete, but right now the corporations are paying big bucks to have their names/products rammed down our throats, and the data shows it works quite well. I dont disagree that its gotten old hearing a driver drone on about thanking sponsors, but its part of the price we pay to get the kind of coverage we now have, as opposed to seeing races on tape delay or worse, not at all...

Anonymous said...

Hey, David, thanks for clearing up for me that Buschwhacking is all about money. I'm sure that warms the hearts of guys like Danny O'Quinn, who can't get a decent ride because of guys like Carl Edwards racing in Busch.

Monkeesfan said...

nh nascarfan, calling it Nextel Cup instead of Winston Cup adds nothing of value to the sponsorship - what adds value is whether people go to the races, buy the products being sold, etc. There is such a thing as negative publicity - people do ignore products because of marketing overkill. Using generic names for races, racecars, etc. is not going to devalue sponsorships; it never has.

As for the original point of this post, the new Sportsman Series car - will it have the enclosed flush airdam and nose configuration of the old car and the roof wicker for the plate tracks? If they do, they show that NASCAR itself knows the COT is a fraudulent idea.