Wednesday, December 10, 2008

There simply are no simple answers

The solution to NASCAR's problems is for Sprint Cup drivers to make lower salaries?

Please don't tell me you think things work that simply.

Drivers at NASCAR's top level make a lot of money because they should make a lot of money. The best at anything make the most money among those who do the same thing. Where that level falls within the rest of the best doing the rest of the jobs depends on how much money there is in a particular line of work.

Should race car drivers make more than teachers? Again, please. The world doesn't work that way. We don't pay people based on their contributions to society. If we did, there wouldn't be a rich rap singer alive. And just think how little sports writers would make.

Race teams that win will stay in business unless the sport absolutely comes unhinged, and despite all of the stuff that's going on these days there's no real danger of that happening.

If you're going to win, you're going to have to have a top-tier driver these days. And if a driver starts winning, he's going to be offered top-tier money to drive for somebody.

It sounds simple to say that if a driver takes a $500,000 pay cut then his team can keep $500,000 worth of employees on the payroll. And if it comes to that, if most top-tier drivers believe that taking that kind of pay cut will help their team stay competitive, the smart drivers will make that happen.

But, as one driver said the other day, if cutting $500,000 off the driver's salary means that a team is going to keep six or seven people employed just for the sake of not having to lay them off, that's another matter. It's just not that easy.

We waste a lot of time these days looking for easy answers to complicated things.

The housing crunch didn't happen because two Democrats took over committees in Congress two years ago, no matter how many times a right-wing radio gasbag tries to tell you it was their fault. Those two Democrats might have been among the dozens of factors in the story, but the housing issue is a tangle of 10,000 wires, not a knot in your shoelace.

Automakers aren't in trouble because unions ruined them or because the chief executive officers make huge salaries. It's a million times more complicated than that.


Monkeesfan said...

First of all David, it isn't "right-wing radio gasbags" noting the role of Democratic Congressmen in the housing problem - it's realworld economics pointing this out; it may not be "simple" to point out that the crisis would never have happened with those Democratic Congressmen, but it remains true.

As for NASCAR's Sprint Cup problems, drivers taking pay cuts, while superficially helpful, is just that - superficial. The real issue is the spendaholism of teams in general and the richest teams in particular. The answer, while it may not be "simple," nonetheless goes by two words -


I don't want to hear that "it can't be enforced," "these teams are independent contractors" and all the other lies people tell to oppose a spending cap, because that's what they are - lies.

NASCAR can enforce a $30 million per year for three cars spending cap through issuance of race entry blanks - comply with the cap, verify compliance, or you don't race.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree that there are no simple answers. Also, there are not quick fixes. It has taken us (US) a long time to get to the place we find ourselves and it wll take a long time to get there.

Both my parents were children of the great depression. The lessons they learned at that time, they kept in mind throughout their lives. They have all passed away, but both my parents and in-laws died debt-free.

The only debt my parents ever had was our home. My dad even paid cash for every car we ever had.

My siblings and I hated it. I was a teen in the 60s and I remember a friend thinking there was something wrong with our tv. I had to explain it was a black and white set! Until it broke down, my father refused to by a color set. (Today all of my grndchildren have their own tvs in their bedrooms, plus a plasma in the family room, and a tiny one in the kitche.)As a child, we never had two of anything: one radio, one tv, one recode player, etc.

I pass an elementary school and see kids on cell phones, while they are listeing to their iPods!

There has to be a balance somewhere in between.

Anonymous said...

David, maybe you have not read all that was going on at Freddy and Fannie and who was in charge. Why does it make sense to give a loan to someone who does not even a work history? How can you give a loan of $300,000 to someone who has a 25,000 per year job?

Asking drivers to take paycuts, does not guarantee it will help the team long-term. If someone like Jeff Gordon gives up some money so that the 12+ emplyees who lost their jobs suddenly have a soft landing, that's great.

But there are several flaws with the idea that the rich can solve everything by making less. If they make less, they buy less, spend less, pay lower taxes, give less to charity, etc. That has a great impact on everyone they interact with.

If the government lowers taxes on NASCAR, them maybe they don't have to lay off so many people. We have the highest corporate tax in he world, partially so it can be redistributed.

Anonymous said...

Just because somethings are complicated - like the financial meltdown - does not mean that there aren't some simple, readily identifiable causes for part of the problem, like congressional interference with what should have been economic decisions. But of course us poor ignorant sheep must wait for the oh so wise media to tell us what the real truth is.

Anonymous said...

While all this is going on, my state may probably send another governor to jail. He was making money on the side while raising our taxes.

Anonymous said...

example of congressional interference:

luxury tax on yachts:

25,000 jobs lost as many manufactoring yachts in US closed their tents.It did not hurt the billionairs who stopped buying a new one every 2-3 years. They could just buy them overseas when they got ready to upgrade.

Anonymous said...

At this time of year we should all be thankful that we have the wisdom of congress and the all-knowing media to guide us.

Anonymous said...

I am against a spending cap. Why is it better for NASCAR if every one runs their garage like Petty or Woods? Petty now has about 40 employees.

The Hendricks and Roushes have about 500 employees each. That's better for NASCAR and the economy. That's 500 people paying taxes, owning homes, giving to charity, paying for their kids expenses, etc.

So now Rck Hendrick is going to pocket the money instead of using it for salaries? He would just get ricker. Why is that good? HMS has about 30 college educated engineers. Why would firing all of them help the sport/economy?

Owners have their eyes open when they decide to race Cup. If you cannot afford it, go to Nationwide or Trucks. Tony is starting a new team. He is not asking for charity. He knows what it takes and he is willing to work hard to acheive it.

NFL or MLB or others, do have spending caps. They also have a fixed field of teams. It's not a "ya all come." Before you can buy a team, you have to prove you can afford it. And even then, if they don't like you, you don't get to play. (Unlike NASCAR who will let a 70 year old guy race.) Also, the spening caps are huge. I mean $30 mil for 3 cars? That's chump change. It would not be an elite racing series if every Tom, Dick and Harry could get in.

It looks like even with a cap, CC Sabatia is getting a $140 million contract from the Yankees.

Anonymous said...

It looks like Arena Football League has cancelled its 2009 season.

Monkeesfan said...

Anonymous #8, here are the problems in your argument -

1 - Racing does not need teams to have 500 or more employees for its teams to be able to go fast. Those 500 employees Hendrick and Roush have would likely be employeed with other teams like Bill Davis, Andy Petree, Travis Carter, Yates, Morton-Bowers, etc. in a saner economic structure for the sport. And Hendrick, Roush, etc. would not be crushed in ability to race - they'd simply have to cap their spending.

2 - Going to BGN or Trucks is a poor alternative given the neglect the sanctioning body has long had toward them.

3 - The fixed field of teams in NFL and MLB hasn't prevented expansion over the decades. While your larger point comparing to racing is nonetheless true, you're ignoring the net shrinkage of teams in just this decade. SCENE DAILY noted a stat that floors me - in the 1995 Daytona 500 there were 37 different owners; in the 2008 500 there were only eighteen.

BTW, Tony Stewart is NOT starting a new team, he simply purchased into Gene Haas' existing outfit.

"$30 million for three cars? That's chump change." Uh, yeah. It's an affordable cap. "It would not be an elite racing series if every Tom Dick & Harry could get in." Elite is oversold; you earn elite status with a strong and deep competitive product; you don't create elite by pricing out everyone from contention.

You mention CC Sabathia - MLB does not have a spending cap; it does, though, have a luxury tax.


A bottom-line question is this -

What would possibly be lost in a spending cap era of NASCAR that is worth keeping?

Monkeesfan said...

Anonymous #9 - I am surprised that the AFL has lost the 2009 season. I'm confident, though, they'll be back - to have lasted 22 seasons and have shown that that style of football is not only competitive but fun - I'm still mad, albiet in a proud way, that the Manchester Wolves of AF2 lost in the AF2 semi-finals to the Tennessee Valley Vipers, because the Wolves rallied to score two spectacular last-minute playoff wins to get there - is a sign the concept and the people running that league have a fundamentally sound thing going.

Anonymous said...

from anon 3:19

#1. There is no cap and no one seems to be hiring all the employees that HMS has let go. As a matter of fact, NASCAR is trying to help all these displaced folks find jobs. HMS has not hired all the engineers available in the US. Yet, others just don't see the need.

re anon #9 I'm also sad about arena football. It's a real fan-based sport. Is the cancellation just for 1 year?

#2. If you cannot make it in Cup, go do something else. Don't tell peolple how to spend their money. Or, I want to do something, so don't let anyone spend more than I have, otherwise I'll be sad.

#3. Not everybody survives in their chosen line of work. An example is restaurants. They have the greatest failure rate of business. Oh, well.

As far as expansions, sure, I'm sure drivers would be willing to wait decades for a chance to race!

None of the big series are contemplating any expansions in the near future. Just ask Mark Cuban. He cannot count on expansion and he probably cannot get the MLB to allow him to buy a baseball team (even before current problems). I'm in Chicago and the public would like to have Mark here, but all the informed souces say he chances before were between nil and none. Now they are probably just none. And this guy loves baseball and is a billionaire!

As far as shrinkage, that's another element of the century we live in. The same is probably in most large industries. Look at airlines, manufacturing, food processors, farms, newspapers, radio stations, hotels, utility companies,etc.

The bigger you are, the more you can compete, and have a greater chance of survival. It also has to do with the economies of scale.

My comments are only my opinions and not interested in convincing anyone. This is just a place where all opionions get space.

Anonymous said...

Well, just reported that Earnhardt-Ganassi have shut down their Nationwide Series operation.

Anonymous said...

Once again a Poole piss poor performance finding the reasons why not instead of why. Do you have your own negative thought generator or is it purly just your on gloom n doom attitude? The millionaires club needs correction and maybe just mayube they might think about the fans and give them their money's worth in entertainment. instead of maximum compensation for miminal work.

Anonymous said...

Poole, I alway's knew you were a friggen "LIBERAL". I bet you fill like a snow flake in a coal yard at the races since 99 % of the people there are conservatives.

Also I read the other day in a Sporting News article that Jeff Gordon has already said he would slash over half of his estimated 35 million dollar annual salary to help out his team to keep people.

Anonymous said...

Watch out Poole...Looks like you raked over the right-wing ant pile. Now they're biting at your ankles. Get him wingers! Hypocrites.

Anonymous said...

Even Kevin Harvick cautioned of blaming the bad economic situation on Petty's problem. He's right. Petty has been in trouble for the last 2 decades. He just ignored it.

E-Ticket said...

Wow... Mike Helton has solved the problem for all of us. David is correct the drivers don't need to take a pay cut. We all need to shop the sponsors we love in this sport.. Hello.. This year I was going shopping but couldn't find a Western Auto, I was confused so I bought some Winston Cigarettes and called my friend on my ATT Iphone to meet me at the photography store and get some Kodak Film. We stopped by the local Sears and got some Craftsman tools and checked out the deals at the local Circuit City that was having a huge closeout sale. Ran to the local 7-11 and grabbed some Busch Beer so we could go home and watch the Family Channel. Thanks Mr. Helton and NASCAR for figuring out how to solve the NASCAR sponsor problem.. Just buy stuff from the sponsors.. Hey Mike WALMART doesn't sponsor a car what can you do about that??

Anonymous said...

David (Not Poole, but the last one):

Mike Helton is partially correct. The best way to support NASCAR and encourage sponsorship is to support the current sponsors. Let them know they are getting a good value with their investment.

Specifically, make the NASCAR choice. Even if you dont like Jimmie Johnson, buy the Pringles with his image as opposed to the blank one. Get the M&Ms with Kyle on the package as opposed to the one without.

Shop the stores that support our sport, and let them know it as well.

If they have a website with a NASCAR contest (such as Crown Royal and the Your Name Here contest), at least click on the link, or better, enter the contest.

Right now, with every dollar being looked at, the more bang they think they are getting, the better it will be for NASCAR.

Yeah, it wont solve everything, but it will help to keep the sponsors active in the sport.

Anonymous said...

Anyone notice that everyone seems to be downsizing and trying to eliminate unnecessary expenses, except for the government, and they're going to determine what the auto industry needs to do to survive?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Poole,

Reporters like you are exactly why newspapers are going under across the nation.

Although this piece is your opinion, why is there a need to inject your politics? I come to a racing site to read about racing. Not to read dribble about politics.

Next time time when you feel the need to spew your political opinion, take a moment, stuff your face, and remember what your job is.

Monkeesfan said...

Anonymous #17, he never ignored it, he tried to get through it. BTW, how were they "in trouble" when they were winning races again in the latter 1990s?

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how much of the NASCAR community blames the unions for the problems they are facing. But of course the union had some part in it. I have beena union worker for 34 years. The management of my union was no better than the management of the organization. They all want power and that includes both sides.

A huge part of the blame goes to the government. They don't know how to run anything well (IRS, post office, etc), but they want to make laws that make heavy burdens on corporations.

An example are the airbags. The government made laws, without proper research, and mandated the auto industry to implement it at a huge cost to the public. Then when babies started dying due to the airbags, the govenment said "Whoops, my bad." Hey, if you want to avoid all car related deaths- get rid of all cars.

Every time they make a new law, the manufactores have to retool, re-train, dump supplies, buy supplies, etc.

I hope this recession will slow down goverment and all their laws.

Monkeesfan said...

Anonymous #23 - slowing down the government ultimately is the answer.

As for the recession, there is a lot of weirdness to it, shown in foreclosure data showing a disproportionate centralization of recent foreclosures.

Anonymous said...

What ever happen to drivers racing simply because they loved to? Have the NASCAR drivers gone the way of the MLB, NFL and NBA where money is more important then the sport?

I'm all for cutting back on expenses to help keep a full field. I think the worse thing that could happen is only have 15 -20 cars at a race. It will be like the CART where only the rich can afford to have a car. NASCAR needs to look at cheaper motors and simplifing where possible to cut back on expenses. The only way to keep sponsors interested is to give them a good value for the money.

Anonymous said...

The problem is lack of sponsors! The cost to sponsor a race car is exceeding the amount companies are willing to spend on sponsorship. The ecomonic problems only emphasis this problem. NASCAR teams have had problems keeping and attacting sponsors for at least 3 years. The governing body didn't help this problem by signing their own exclusive agreements with Sprint, Sunoco, etc... AT&T didn't leave because they didn't have the money they were forced to leave. Same with Altel, Exxon/Mobil, etc..
The other issue is if you are not in the chase, you are not on TV. Why spend money if your product will not be seen?
You can say run better, you will be in TV...well duh! But it's hard to do that when you can't get the sponsors to get the money to get the better equipment, driver, etc... You get caught in the cycle and sadly the pioneers of the sport disappear because they didn't keep up or got bit by the money game.
I doubt we will have 43 cars for most races and the stands will be empty.

Anonymous said...

There is nothing wrong for wanting the highest salary you can get for what you do. We are not slaves. If an owner offers you more, we'll take more.

I work in a union "shop." And when my organization was having financial problems, we (the regular rank and file) stated we would give up a raise so no positions would be lost. The union said NO! They said it would impact employees all over the US if the signal was sent that we were willing to work for less.

You take whatever the market will bare. Just because movies are not making as much does not mean Tom Cruise or Angelina will work for less than $20mil, or whatever. If the Yankees will give CC $161mil, why shouldn't he take it?

A lot of drivers live according to their earnings. Like many people, if I make $10mil, that's my lifestyle. If I make $50K, then that's my lifestyle. You cannot suddely ask people to give up half their salaries. Some drivers support their extended families. That means their parents and siblings. They own a home in NC and one in their home town. Some have foundations and have made long-term commitments to support a certain charity (like a hospital).

Most well-paid folks don't make their money, put it in pile and stare at it. THEY SPEND IT. That's good for America. Jeff Gordon said something that made me think he had regrets for spending so much on his motor coach. I think he is wrong. I went to an event that featured Provost coaches. They cost about $1mil when new. But guess what? It's regular folks that make them. It's regular folks that sell them. It's regular folks that maintain them. Thank goodness there are people that can afford to buy them.

With the increase in the price of gas, a lot of regular folks are no longer buying or upgrading to bigger and new more expensive coaches. That's bad for the industry. I hope they don't go the way of boat builders. At least the rich, like NASCAR drivers, will still own and drive them. (It's also good for the truck series.)

Anonymous said...

After every Cup race Jayski has a bit where they show the breakdown for the exposure of the cars shown on tv. Unlike what is a popular saying, it is not only the top 12 that are featured. They show far many more cars and many more times than is claimed. There is also another orgnaization that figures out the value of each exposure. So, while the top drivers get the loin's share, the other driver get some too.

E-Ticket said...

My earlier Rant about Mike Helton was meant tongue in cheak. I completely understand we need to do that but I still think NASCAR could do more than we ever could. Besides they have stolen so many good sponsors and run others off with exclusive deals just for THEM. It really breaks my heart that good teams lost sponsors to NASCAR. They negotiated it away from a team. That is wrong.. Can you say COORS LIGHT??

Anonymous said...

Boy, there are some dumb people on here. What racing needs is John McCain to come to more races. Then he can help his Republican buddies in the Senate kill the UAW (who has sponsored races) and take out GM and Chrysler and Ford, and then you dumb-a** sons of Beaches will be scratching your heads and saying "where did that Bristol race go? Where did that Talladega race go? What happened to my little fantasy world where I'm not responsible for anything and my politicians aren't responsible for anything and it must be the fault of BILL CLINTON or something.
Then maybe you'll figure out that the reason your hands are sore is because your knuckles scrape the ground when you walk........!

Anonymous said...

Simply put, the sport got too "fat". Nothing against any of these teams, but look at the grand halls of Hendrick, Childress, Roush,and Gibbs namely. Does it really take a building that fancy and plush to build a competitive race car? Probably not, but it may take that to attract a sponsor who's willing to pony up those big bucks. But now here we are with those type of funds in very short supply. What type of cutbacks would major teams have been forced to make if their facilities had been a little more realistic? The whole sport might be in better shape right now if more teams had shops similar to the old Petty Enterprises, Wood Brothers, or Bud Mooore. I'm not advocating anyone working in archaic or unclean conditions. But a fancy building does not make a racecar go faster. I'm just saying that one look at the "Taj-Mahals" some of these teams have screams that someone was paying or making way too much money.

Anonymous said...

NASCAR began making this sport all about money in the mid to late 1980's when they began giving "concessions" (i.e. different spoiler heights) to uncompetitive makes of cars as opposed to making them go back and build something competitive. From there it has progressed to allowing a manafacturer who has never sold a production, push-rod, V8 engine. Rules changes and schedule changes have been soley in the name of greed, minus a few safey innovations, of which some were really good (softwalls, HANS, etc). But otherwise, if something major changes in this sport these days, you will find, if dig deep enough, there's more money in it for NASCAR. Case in point. When Big Bill built Daytona, Coca-Cola took no interest in supplying their product to the track. And Mr. France stated that no Coke products would ever be sold at ISC tracks. Now, Coca-Cola has naming rights for the July race in Daytona. Apparently, no principle is too sacred for NASCAR to make a buck.

Anonymous said...

Really, really hate to get into politics, but screw the UAW. It doesn't take an economist to figure out that someone making $20 per hour can't afford a car built by someone making $47 per hour. Including benefits, UAW workers make over $80 per hour, while non-union Toyota workers make about $50, including benefits. Is Toyota asking for government assistance? And I really hate defending Toyota, 'cause to me they shouldn't even be allowed in NASCAR.

Anonymous said...

Here's my uninformed/former racer/working stiff slant on all this BS. Could it be that nascar has finally outspent& outgrown it's self? Perhaps the collapsing economy is just magnifying the major flaws in thier business model? They have managed to force me to stop attending races because of the costs(I have a 100K household income). In my opinion, this can be directly attributed to the fact these teams need a large fortune in sponsorships and prize money just to make the monthly nut. David, you say they are the best so spending limits are bad, well have you considered perhaps they are not "the best"? Let's face it, Even the COTs are still 65 galaxy front ends with chevy truck trailing armed rear ends With rreeallly sticky tires and huge HP engines. And 3400lbs? come on! Either lose all the R&D crap(including engineers), or put them to work and turn nascar into a run-what-you-brung, F1 TYPE series. Yes the drivers and crews are very good their given tasks, but are they the best in the world at it? Do they deserve basiclly unlimited budgets for- go to end of the straightaway and turn left?(I know it's more than that, but still) Maybe our country has finally outgrown a series based on 'shine runners cars? I hope the entire series and all of the support series collapse under their own weight. Maybe we can salvage something good from the rubble.

Anonymous said...

anon 11:56pm

I guess there are always going to be people who want to tell others how to spend their money. THIS IS NOT CUBA, OR RUSSIA!!

Read the history of all the men you mentioned. See how they got to where they are today. THEY DID NOT STEAL THE MONEY!

I can see how many people are going to use the state of the economy to blame for their bad business practices.

Ask around the garage. How many people would rather work for Petty or Hendrick/Childress/Gibbs/Roush, etc?


You make a great point. Unions can get you lots of money, but they cannot guarantee you have a job. There are fewer union jos now than ever in history.

I have been a union worker for 34 years. Not because I wanted to but to protect myself from other union workers. There were so many horrible employees, but have kept their jobs because of the union. It has cost my organization and the public millions and millions of dollars.

When I was young, I worked in a building that had an elevator operator in each elevator. At one point, the elevators were upgraded to push-button, but the company (forced by the union contract) had to pay the operators to push the buttons!
What was interesting was that we the public could push our own buttons when the operator was on a coffee break, lunch break, dentist appointment,or after 5pm. Go figure!

The railroad is another example of bad union contracts.

Anonymous said...

It sure is silly to blame individual owners for the state of NASCAR. NASCAR has a lot of rules, and as long as they play by the rules, they should receive no criticism.

The new buildings/campuses by the top teams are great. They bring tourists, they have used safer materials (no asbestos/lead), they are energy effecient, they have better handicapp access, the wiring and wireless allow for the latest in electronic equiment. They also employed countless people (architects, engineers, welders, carpeters, plumbers, landscapers, electicians, heavy equipment operators,etc) which made it good for the local economy.

How does Petty, operating out of town in an antiquated building good for NASCAR? I mean 3 race wins in 24 years?!!! I just wonder what Petty did with all his money? He had more than Hendricks/Roush/ Childress, etc.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of unions, I remember when Petty tried to force France to go union. That move could have cost Petty his career. Thank goodness Petty lost.

Anonymous said...

Mike Daly you are just weird, that's all anyone can say for you, just weird. Gawd help you man cause there ain't much else out there can help you. And speaking of out there: I can't believe that you think two Democratic congressman were responsible for part of the mess we find ourselves in. It's just incredible. You must be on some powerful stuff -- red bull #9 -- or something to really have the thoughts that you make public. Who represented Freddi and Fannie but some of the most powerful REPUBLICAN lobbyists on the planet? Huh? What did your hero Newt (Contract with Anyone but America) Gingrich do in this effort? Huh? Go ahead, do your research and come back and tell us what Gingrich did for Freddie and Fannie. No regs Repubs was the Order of the Day and no regs disaster is what we got. There is so much blame to go around the last 8 years no one can even find the rug where to start. I know that you have all the answers, though--all in that little head of yours--for us all to hear. Go ahead Big Boy, make your case. Go show us how two (or 5 or 10 or 100) lil ole Dems screwed up what the Repubs in the majority the last 6 of the last 8 years had. Go ahead and spalin how all those checks and balances that Repubs had in place were wiped away by these lil ole liberals. We won't mention the majorities in Congress or in the cabinet or in the regulatory arena or on wall street or on main street or in campaign contributions or in judicial rulings appointments and the like or in the sheer number of federal and state lobbyists or the statehouses themselves or just about every facet of american society the last 8 years the majority of this place has been in R and corporate control. Go ahead tell us how two lil ole Dems made a mockery of that infrastructure.

Anonymous said...

The problem with David Poole and his thinking,which turns into his writing is this...

Anonymous said...

When Nascar started letting owners have 3 4 and 5 teams it was the begining of the end. All the money going to one owner. (GREED)
GEM-3 maybe 4
Yates really Roush-3

Total-27 cars 7 owners (GREED)

15 to 30 mill one team (GREED)

Nascar competing for the sponsor dollar against the owners. (GREED)

Nascar, ISC (GREED)

The answer 2 cars to one owner or one team or in the name of one company.

Answer spending cap. Ten mill per Car.

Answer The Frances need to decide if they want to own Nascar or ISC.

These answers are to simple for the owners ,Nascar they can't see through (GREED) money blinds the best of people.
Winning at any cost. (Roush ,HMS couldn't beat RCR, Dale Sr so lets spend more.)I am not a fan of RCR or Dale Sr. I do miss him he would be a real man and tell the truth about this mess. He would tell Brain (I wish I was Donald Trump) France he has messed up the whole thing its more about money and not about the racing.

Thats why Petty is in trouble. Its about racing not about having 500 people work on 2 or 3 cars. These guys did it with 10 or 15 people to do the job of 100 when racing was racing.
I am sick of the whole thing I really don't care anymore I hope Bobby Labonte gets a great ride he is a real racer just like Terry and D.W. Dale Sr. and Richard Petty.
Well I have had my say Merry Christmas

Anonymous said...


Charging people for the last 24 years and only winning 3 races.

Anonymous said...


Wanting what someone else has--but not by working for it, by having it handed to you.

Dodge drivers:

Kurt: 1 win, 5 top5s, 10 top 10s

Ryan:1 pole,1 win, 2 top 5s,8 top10


Kyle P: 0 wins,0 top5,0 top 10

Anonymous said...

Greed 3 races in 24 years
Lets see I think 262 wins in 60 years on less money and more pure love of RACING.

You must be some new fan Anonymous 41
I have seen this sport for 40 yrs.
First race Langley Speedway Hampton Va 1968.

Anonymous said...

And the Pettys never asked for anything handed to them.
Oh yea 9 or 10 championships.
And tell me if all of Richards real7 championships (not these chase fellfare ones) were handed to him

Anonymous said...

Well, the last few posts have confirmed it. What they indicate is exactly what has been a big part of NASCAR's downfall....Lack of respect for tradition. Respecting tradition does not prohibit making progress, but does have a way of showing what works and what doesn't. Why would someone want to hammer on Richard Petty, the most fan friendly sports figure on the planet? I'm willing to bet that the fannies you'll see forking out the bucks to attend races during this recession are going to be the very same ones NASCAR turned its back on when it started yanking dates from Rockingham and Darlington. Heck, California couldn't fill the stands when everyone had money.

As for dropping the hammer on Kyle, why blame him for who his dad is? Just being Richard's son doesn't mean you expect anything, even if you get it. And I wonder how many out there would continue racing at all had they been through what Kyle went through with Adam? I think it took courage on Kyle's part to keep racing and run the business at the same time, regardless of what the results were.

My opinion only, and hate to step on toes, but this sport was a lot better before it exploded and became the "in" thing. 20 years ago you could walk into any major teams' shop and look around and take pictures of the cars being built and readied for the next race. Sponsors would send you free hats and patches and decals. Camping at all the tracks was free. Drivers were not forced to sprint from the racecar to the hauler to avoid being mobbed. And the main focus of most of the fans camping at the track was the race, not partying. (Those "biggest NASCAR fan" TV ads are disgusting, and yes I drink beer and I'm not a prude) Sure, there have always been drunks at the races, and always will be, but that was not why an overwhelming majority of fans were there.

On the other hand I will say that given what it cost to camp at and attend a race now, fans have a right to demand close finishes and competition. But I don't think that everyone becoming so obsessed with a "level playing field" and penalizing (immediately most times) every team that gains a slight advantage is a good thing. Maybe only 3 to 5 cars or teams had a legitimate shot to win back in the 60' and 70's, but it cost $25 for a ticket and camping was free. And if you'll check history, there were some very thrilling races and finishes, without the benefit of "debris cautions" and that stupid "green/white/checkered" junk. Those were real finishes, not something dictated by NASCAR through the use of the rule book and the caution flag. NASCAR stepped in when it needed to at times as with the Superbirds, big blocks, etc. But it was far less often than now.

Ok, so I'm an old fart, living in the past. Sue me. And to show I can laugh at myself here's a question:

How many old NASCAR fans does it take to change a light bulb?

A: Three. One to change the light bulb, and two to tell you how good the old one was.....