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Discussion Topic: Would You Rather See a Great Race or a Great Finish?

By admin | May 29, 2013

By Richard Allen

As has been well documented by now, the Indianapolis 500 ended on Sunday in a somewhat disappointing way. With much anticipation, a final restart with only a few laps remaining promised to deliver one of that event’s all time great endings. However, a caution came out shortly after that final green flag waved and caused the race to end with an anti-climatic coast to the finish line under yellow conditions.

Almost immediately, Twitter and Facebook lit up with discussion over whether or not the world’s most famous auto race should end with a green/white/checkered finish similar to those employed by NASCAR under similar circumstances.

NASCAR on Fox commentator Larry McReynolds voiced his opinion on Twitter shortly after the Indy race concluded when he wrote, ”Looks like Indy needs to follow the Motorsports leader #NASCAR and adopt G-W-C Awesome finish Dull finish!”

But one thing there can be little debate over is that the Indy 500 provided great racing throughout most of its 500 mile distance. In all, there were a record setting 68 lead changes during the race’s 200 laps as the aerodynamics package employed by IndyCar set up a situation in which the lead car was bound to be passed on virtually every straightaway. So even if the race did not end in a satisfying way for many fans, it provided intense action up until that final lap.

Conversely, many NASCAR Sprint Cup races operate under almost exactly the opposite scenario. Often, less than exhilarating parading takes place for long stretches of time followed by a rather predictable late race caution which sets up a two-wide restart for a dash to the checkered flag. Often, such races end with a close battle or some other sort of controversy. Obviously, having both a great race with a great finish is the preferable situation, but that doesn’t happen often.

So a brief summary brings us to today’s discussion topic. Would you rather see a race that has lots of passing and battling throughout but ends with an anti-climatic finish, or would you rather see a race that has relatively little action throughout but ends with a thrilling finish?

Please voice your opinion either by writing a comment below, voting in the poll question in the right sidebar or both.


Topics: Articles |

9 Responses to “Discussion Topic: Would You Rather See a Great Race or a Great Finish?”

  1. Richard Allen Says:
    May 29th, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Here are some responses already received via Twitter:

    @RobbieSTL- “bet Larry Mac didn’t mind it during the 98 daytona 500!”

    @sjthorsen76- let’s talk boring finish when Nascar heads to Indy in a couple months

    @CochiseWarrior- Good racing no question about it.

    @MontysAmendment- 1st option without a doubt

    @RoyMullins- Id take what I just watched 10 out of 10 times and be thrilled.

    @momdmbfan- A good finish makes the pain of a bad race disappear for some reason. imo

    @roadraceparts- the good race with bad finish. That entertains for hours vs few minutes. Results generaaly aren’t remembered long.

    @cass404- A good race. Otherwise why bother watching more than the last ten or twenty laps?

  2. Robert Green Says:
    May 29th, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    Sitting in the stands, a good race would be best as it spurs on excitement throughout the race and great interplay between the fans. I attended the All-Star race this year and after all the hype it was boring at best… The cars are pretty much all the same so whoever gets into the lead stays there… Boring!!! And the fans just sit there… Not good…

  3. Tony Geinzer Says:
    May 29th, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    I want to see a Great Race on DVD or ESPN in 10 Years uninterrupted with original commentary.

  4. RacingFan Says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 1:38 am

    Was the Indy finish bad? The winner couldn’t hold back and go for a last lap pass on the last straightaway because a caution could come out before then. He had to charge, make a pass, and try to hold them off.
    Having a yellow flag end the race is like having a checkered flag thrown at a random time. You had better be leading, or you won’t win.
    To me, the race ended with the yellow, not the checkered, and was definitely exciting.
    I used to like and respect Larry’s opinions, but he became little more than a salesman for NASCAR years ago. I don’t read his columns anymore because they are more annoying than enlightening to me. A G-W-C finish would lead to wrecks, as it has in NASCAR. The Indy drivers are not as well protected as in NASCAR. The wreckage would include human body parts.

  5. Bill B Says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 6:25 am

    I loved the Indy race. It was honest. It was unmanipulated. It was natural.
    I’d rather see a great race than a spectacular finish any day if it means to get that spectacular finish you have to set up dominos to make it happen.
    To me the GWC takes the win from the driver that should have and most often deserves to win and arbitrarily awards it to another. Many times this involves mayhem and bent sheet metal resulting in a crapshoot ending. That isn’t fair to the competitors and it demeans the “sport” aspect of racing in favor of the entertainment factor. For the most part I am against anything that raises the entertainment factor at the expense of the sport factor. While I prefer a race to end under green flag conditions, I never had a problem, ever, with a race ending under caution.

  6. Jesse Says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 7:31 am

    I was at INDY and the race was great, yea I was a little dissapointed with the finish at first, but what a race and please don’t let the Nascar lovers get hold of the race and trick it up. It’s been doing fine for 97 races and looking forward to the 100th running of the Greatest Spectacle In Racing.

  7. GinaV24 Says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 10:16 am

    I loved the Indy 500 and thought that the correct decision was made for the finish. It was a great race and yes, I’d rather see a great race than a wreck’em finish.

    NASCAR tries to generate excitement by manipulating the cautions, the finishes, etc. to make up for the fact that the majority of the racing up to the last 10 laps is pretty mind numbing. It didn’t used to be like that, but it is now.

    Having the end of a race be a crapshoot isn’t the way I want to see it finish.

  8. The Mad Man Says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    The Indy 500 had everything that was missing from the Faux infomercial called a race. Speed, excitement, heart tugging stories, several women with a shot (albeit small) chance to win, a hometown boy on the pole, and Dinger proving his redemption. All of this was done without manipulation from the sanctioning body via phony debris cautions. It was a more pure race. No shilling, no inane commentary, no conflicts of interest, great camera coverage, no excessive use of gimmicks.

    Larry Mac needs to use some heavy duty mouthwash because his breath smells like NA$CAR’s backside.

  9. midasmicah Says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    How about both?