By admin | March 4, 2013
By Richard Allen
The Subway Fresh Fit 500 at the Phoenix International Speedway was billed as the “real” debut for the so called Gen-6 Sprint Cup car. The event certainly featured some interesting moments. Pit strategy, intriguing storylines among the big stars, a green/white/checkered finish and a popular race winner who broke a long losing streak made for some points of interest. However, there were also long stretches of parading with little passing and a finish that came down to track position and fuel mileage may have taken away from the interest level for some.
Like last week’s Daytona 500, I asked my Twitter and Facebook followers to grade what they saw. And compared to ‘The Great American Race’, the Phoenix event received better overall scores.
Daytona received only one ‘A’ and a disappointing total of 13 grades of ‘F’. Phoenix got more A’s and no F’s.
Of the 54 respondents, a total of six fans scored the race as an ‘A’ with another 21 giving the race a ‘B’. While there were more people to participate in the Daytona poll, the percentage of above average marks for Phoenix compares very favorably against the sport’s biggest race.
Twenty-two fans rated the race as average by giving it a grade of ‘C’. While such a high percentage of C’s may sound bad, it is encouraging that this wasn’t the high end of the scale overall. Daytona received so many D’s and F’s while getting so few A’s and B’s, the C’s came off sounding like good grades for that race.
There were five grades of ‘D’ and as stated before, no F’s.
One theme that tended to ring through from a number of fans was that the green/white/checkered finish and the drama of the fuel mileage saved the overall race. Had it not been for those factors, the race would have received a lower score.
So in the end, the Subway Fresh Fit 500 posted much better overall marks from fans than did the Daytona 500. While the sample size described here for both races is very small, it is a positive sign for NASCAR that fans thought more of this race than of the Daytona 500. After all, it was the non-restrictor plate tracks the the new Gen-6 car was created to improve.
Here are some sample comments from those who responded to my poll:
Richard Ford on Facebook said, “B+ because of the final green white checker.”
Rick Brooks on Facebook declared, “Snake race most of the day. Late race caution the only real excitement. C-”
@NBabyak on Twitter said, “D … tired f only enjoying the finish… getting sad”
@PreGameEngnr opined, “D-. Exact same kind of racing we’ve seen for five years. Track position is most important. Four tires slower than 2? #smh”
@KellyFritts said, “I grade it a C cuz I noticed there really isn’t a lot of passing with the new cars. Another fuel mileage race is not good.”
@corvettebuster added, “I would rate it a b also hoping things will get better in coming weeks.”
@dkjr12 wondered, “B+, I have no idea why people are being so harsh on this car. would of been an A had the last 40 laps not been single file”
@Leslie88_48 said, “I give it a A-. There was passing and the finish was AWESOME!!”
@scootershoney saw the race in person, “I was at the track & give it a B.”
@jeremybhaley advised, “you have to ask that question before the final restart. Otherwise you get win/loss reaction.”
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