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« Who would NASCAR fans hate if they didn’t have the Busch brothers? | Main | If you owned a second tier NASCAR team would you hire Kurt Busch? »

NASCAR hierarchy gave reason to believe all those conspiracy theories in 2011

By admin | December 11, 2011

By Richard Allen

For as long as there has been a NASCAR there have been people who believe the sanctioning body has been up to something. According to these theorists, the ‘man behind the curtain’ is quite busy pulling all the right stings to make sure things work out for the best of the organization, but not necessarily in the interest of competition and fairness.

After the way some things played out at the end of the season there seems to be little reason to disbelieve some of those conspiracy theories.

NASCAR showed in 2011 it is an organization that does indeed like to operate from the dark shadows rather than out in the light of day. Secret fines and probations, private directives, and meetings in the concealment of a mysterious hauler have proven to be the modus operandi for the leadership of this sport.

Well, conspiracy theorists believe those who carry out devious plans act in secret, issue private directives and meet in concealment. NASCAR is providing those theorists with fuel to put on their fires.

Just before the end of the 2011 season it was revealed that driver Brad Keselowski had been issued what was supposed to have been a secret fine for comments he had made regarding NASCAR’s plan to implement electronic fuel injection in the upcoming season. This was not the first of these not-so-transparent moves by the sanctioning body.

Ryan Newman was hit with a similar unspoken penalty after he and rival Juan Pablo Montoya had been involved in a physical confrontation during a meeting inside the supposedly secretive NASCAR hauler.

When asked about whether or not there had been other secret fines issued, NASCAR Chairman Brian France retorted, “There could be.” He went on to say that this sport’s drivers are allowed greater freedom of speech than other sports allow but there have to limitations on that speech.

When further pressed as to whether such secret actions could cause harm to the sport once found out, France declared, “That’s up to you to what to write and be interested about.  I can only tell you that I take every question.  I never say no comment.  I’ve explained it.  If there’s a better way, sort of this idea that there are a bunch of things going on behind the curtain.  We’ve never been more transparent.  We’ve never had more of anything, and that is the way it should be.”

If the organization has never been more transparent but yet continues to work in secret, it makes you wonder what has gone on in the past.

The chairman added, however, that, “If there’s a benefit to announcing them to the public and the media, we’ll take a look at them,” France added.  “We just didn’t see a benefit at the time.  Maybe there is a benefit.”

Simply put, publicity conscious NASCAR will announce things that make them look good but will keep secret(or attempt to at least) the things that make them look bad. Aside from those who work inside the hauler, who knows where that line is?

So since we have no way of knowing fact from fiction we might as well assume that all those conspiracies are true. If NASCAR operates in the dark in one area, why wouldn’t they in other areas? To use the chairman’s own words in regard to what’s truth and what isn’t in the sport, “That’s up to you to what to write and be interested about.”

If it’s up to you then if you want to believe NASCAR favors certain teams in the inspection line, then go ahead. If you want to believe NASCAR has handed out golden restrictor plates in the past, then go ahead. If you want to believe NASCAR throws fake debris cautions for the purpose of artificially tightening the competition, then go ahead. If you want to believe NASCAR throws cautions to help certain drivers stay on the lead lap, then go ahead. If you believe some are targeted for pit road speeding violations and others are allowed to get by, then go ahead.

Anyone who has followed this sport for very long has heard some or all of the ideas mentioned above be discussed. If NASCAR is to be taken seriously in the landscape of the sports world and be thought of as legitimate, none of those can be true. However, knowing that the sanctioning body does in fact operate at least some of the time in secrecy “to benefit” the sport, then every action(or inaction) is open for debate.

NASCAR has often been accused of operating with all the openness of a Masonic lodge meeting. It may be their prerogative to do so, but when they do they cannot complain when their actions are brought into question.

Topics: Articles |

13 Responses to “NASCAR hierarchy gave reason to believe all those conspiracy theories in 2011”

  1. Russ Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 7:49 am

    I wonder how many people seriously think that they arent manipulating events, at least to some degree? I dare say that most excuse it if it benefits their hero, otherwise “it ain’t right!”.

  2. Sue Rarick Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 9:24 am

    What bothers me more is the fact that it seems all their top people are now in or come from the PR business. They are risking becoming as important as the WWE (or whatever it’s called).

    They still want to take the hillbillie out of NASCAR yet seem oblivious to the fact that 1/3 (100 million) of the US is in hillbillie country. And more of that group actually care about NASCAR than the other 2/3 of the country. My bet is Brian was in Mexico trying to set up races there so they can go after the hispanic demographic. That worked well for indy cars (not).

    It used to be you knew what NASCAR was going to do about fines etc on Tuesdays. Now it looks like it’s the tail wagging the dog as NASCAR seems to wait to see what the press is writing before they act.

    I used to plan my weekends around NASCAR. Now if a race happens to be on when home I will watch. Otherwise I’ll read about it on Mondays. It’s become less important to me. Good job of PR guys.

  3. Larry Amos Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 10:48 am

    To further add to your theory just think of this. How is it that a race team that only performed mediocre for 26 races and barely makes the chase suddenly win 5 of the next 10 races? He also braged about how he was going to run up front and blow Edwards doors off and in the final race he seemed to know he was going to win baring a crash or mechanical problem. Stange isn’t it? NASCAR owned and operated by GM.

  4. B Knotts Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 11:14 am

    For contrast, look at how NHL Senior VP Brendan Shanahan hands out penalties. For each penalty, he thoroughly explains in a video release the reasoning behind the penalty and shows video of the incident in question.

    If NASCAR expects to be taken seriously in the Information Age, this is the direction in which they need to go.

  5. Gene Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 11:21 am

    “Getting the call” has been in nascar since day one. It’s just become more and more noticeable in the last 20-25 years since television started calling the shots.

    Of course, anyone that watches football (ncaa or nfl) baseball, or basketball will see certain teams benefit by the refs’ decisions more often than not.

    The league/nascar czars communicate to the refs/officials which teams/drivers will draw the most viewers by winning.

  6. Rick Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    I hate when people think they know it all and they dont know crap if Nascar was fixing races or giving the so called call why has Dale jr. not won a championship yet answer that fools.

  7. Gene Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    No fool, but I’ll answer anyway. Jr has received more ‘wave arounds’ and ‘lucky dogs’ than any other driver in nascar… by far (nascar, by way of espn, made jayski quit posting those stats). Strange that so many ‘debris’ caution fall just before he’s lapped, or when he is the first car one lap down. nascar is doing all they can for him, he needs to do a little something himself.

  8. Chris Fiegler Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    Do you think that we will see Either Danica Patrick or Sam Hornish Jr. win a NASCAR Championship in the Future?

  9. Todd Crane Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Rick, come on…Jr. was set to win the championship in 2004 (i think), but he crashed in Homestead, and took himself out of the championship.
    Used to be (back in the day) that the caution trucks had metal in the cab, that they could kick out for the caution, and make a big play of tossing it in the back of the truck. (before tv). BUT now they don’t even show what is on the track when the flag comes out.
    I used to love NASCAR ( did the PA at Daytona in 1968 & 1969) Went to 20 races a year, and was a REAL fan. With the passing od Bill Jr., and dip taking over…I just don’t care anymore, and the old NASCAR was 10 times better than the new NA$CAR.
    Sorry, but Brian has run off most of the old timers, and can’t get the new ones…
    If you can run in the top 43 in qualifying…then you should be in the show…Drop the chase…the COT.. and the fake cautions, OH and the lucky dog, then maybe more fans will show up.

  10. Mr. Tony Geinzer Says:
    December 11th, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Excuse me, I want to say that as a fan, Brian France, that people don’t take kindly to top secret wizardry as a lot of hotshots are trying NASCAR Careers, but sticking is another story.

  11. Bill B Says:
    December 12th, 2011 at 7:13 am

    The joke here is that there is anyone that still thinks you can keep something secret anymore.

  12. Russ Says:
    December 12th, 2011 at 9:07 am

    Speaking of things that make you go “hmmmm?” Wasn’t it interesting that in this era where aero is so important that whoever comes out of the pits first, generally isnt passed, that Tony Stewart could come completely through the field twice at Homestead?
    Just asking.

  13. Woogeroo Says:
    December 12th, 2011 at 11:25 am

    read Smokey Yunick’s book if ya wanna know about past shenanigans. :D

    -W