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« Actions of others take away from Regan Smith’s big day | Main | Does NASCAR need Harvick/Busch type incidents? »

If NASCAR is smart, not much will come from their “looking into” recent confrontations

By admin | May 9, 2011

By Richard Allen


NASCAR has announced they are going to “look into” the altercation that occurred in Darlington this past weekend between Juan Pablo Montoya and Ryan Newman as well as the dustup between Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch. While it may be true that they will “look into” the scuffles and the events that led to them, they are not likely to actually do anything about said confrontations. And more, if they actually do something significant the organization’s leadership is more inept than anyone may have believed.

Why in the world would the sanctioning body look into something that has gotten them so much attention?

For that matter, to actually punish any of these drivers, with the possible exception of Busch for pushing Harvick’s unattended car on pit road, would be hypocritical. NASCAR should not deliver sanctions against drivers who are doing what they’re encouraged to be doing.

NASCAR encourages these things with their late race rules. The wave around and the lucky dog are designed to put as many cars as possible on the lead lap. And, allowing multiple green/white/checkered finishes is the sanctioning body’s way of telling all those drivers on the lead lap to go all out late in races.

All of these rules combined with those often mysterious late race debris cautions are meant to bring about the very incidents fans have seen over the course of the past two weeks. Anyone who believes otherwise is just fooling themselves.

The biggest problem with the Newman/Montoya confrontation with its alleged punch by Newman on Friday in Darlington as far the sport and the television networks are concerned is that it occurred inside the NASCAR truck where no one could see it. The greatest sin as far as fighting at a race track is concerned is doing it out of sight of those who would most enjoy the show.

Concerning that very thing, there is a sign posted at the Modoc Speedway in Georgia that reads something to the effect of, “If you fight in the pits, you go to jail. If you fight on the front stretch, you get $500.” Race promoters are really entertainment promoters and they need things to happen that will encourage fan interest and make them want to come back or watch. Controversy does just that.

As far as the Harvick/Busch confrontation is concerned, it was more amusement than fighting. As a matter of fact, to call that a fight would be an insult to Ali and Frazier. It was more the stuff of a auto racing situation comedy with all that backing and forthing on pit road.

NASCAR may “look into” the driver confrontations but don’t expect anything more than fines that millionaires can easily afford and meaningless probation. That is, if NASCAR is smart.

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Topics: Articles |

3 Responses to “If NASCAR is smart, not much will come from their “looking into” recent confrontations”

  1. Bill B Says:
    May 10th, 2011 at 8:19 am

    The only reason that NASCAR needs to “look into” (wink, wink) this is to walk that line between sport and pseudo-sport. In all other sports people are getting suspended from games (even the playoffs) if they cross the line between competition and being a punk. This is what makes them a sport and not the WWF.

    IMO NASCAR has been teetering closer and closer to the pseudo-sport side with many of their rules and decisions.

  2. Glen H Says:
    May 10th, 2011 at 8:43 am

    I suspect that NA$CAR will put Newman and Montoya on probation and that they’ll put Busch and Harvick on double secret probation. NA$CAR needs this sort of thing to drive up viewer interest and it fits right into the WWE playbook France is using to run NA$CAR.

  3. Russ Edwards Says:
    May 10th, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Theres another reason they won’t do anything - the sponsors, who are spending millions supporting these guys (and nascar) wont put up with it.
    Do you think for a minute if Budweiser said to Harvick “you do it again and we’re out of here” that you would hear anything else from Mr. Harvick? I don’t either.
    As far as Nascars fines and probation, they’re just a joke.