By admin | May 18, 2012
By Richard Allen
On Friday afternoon at the Charlotte Motor Speedway, controversial driver Kurt Busch proved he has at least one thing in common with many top level NASCAR insiders. He, like many other drivers, team owners, track promoters, officials of the sport and high profile media personalities are drifting further out of touch with that core group of fans who are feeling more and more alienated everyday.
While being allowed to hold court at the back of his team’s hauler, Busch made a ridiculous statement that he and many of those other NASCAR insiders probably believe to be true. As he discussed his post-race incident with Ryan Newman and the #39 Stewart-Haas Racing crew, he declared that, “This is good for our sport. This is WWE type action. This is fun. This is entertainment, right guys?”
That statement is out of touch on so many levels for this fan who was originally drawn to NASCAR by the roar of engines, the smell of racing fuel and the exhilaration of watching drivers race each other hard with a zeal for winning each individual event.
Staged fighting isn’t part of NASCAR. And no, it’s not entertainment.
One of NASCAR’s greatest and most famous races took place at the Daytona International Speedway in 1979 and that particular event ended with three of the sport’s most famous drivers in a fight. But those drivers didn’t fight because any or all was making an ass out of himself, but rather, because their passion for winning boiled over in the heat of the moment.
Kurt Busch had chosen the ass option of behavior as evidenced by his often replayed radio communication with his team and his alleged reckless driving on pit road. His behavior can’t in any way be compared to the Allisons and Cale Yarborough on that previously mentioned historic day.
What fans want is to see drivers race each other as if they are more concerned with winning races than scoring a safe and secure points addition. Should passions boil over in the midst of that type of racing then so be it. That adds real drama.
What happened after the race in Darlington was a spoiled brat misbehaving and a bunch of other guys who felt as though they had been personally offended feigning as if they were going to take serious action. As a high school teacher, I see those types of “fights” fairly often.
What happened in Darlington was worthy of discussion because of its stupidity, but not because of it being “good for our sport”.
And lastly, calling actions that resulted in a $50,000 fine “fun” shows even further just how out of touch Busch is. When in this weak economy many fans are struggling to make ends meet, he scoffed at a fine of more money than this high school teacher makes in an entire year’s worth of work.
But guess what? Kurt Busch is not alone as far as being out of touch goes among his little insulated group of NASCAR insiders.
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