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Monday, January 21, 2008

How NASCAR will win you over

As far as tradition goes you can't beat NASCAR. I mean we are talking about a sport that still supports a dirt track series as an acknowledgement of it's roots. You don't see the NFL going with a leather helmet development league. Not to mention the nicknames; Happy, Smoke, Buddy, The Intimidator, Buckshot, Ronda Road Runner, Awesome Bill from Dawsonville.

But it isn't the tradition that makes NASCAR. It isn't the tradition that makes it, it is the leadership of NASCAR being willing to change.
Everytime a tweak to improve baseball is proposed, we hear from the purists. I swear purist is becoming a foul word in my mind. Who cares if it isn't the way it has always done, let's find the best way to do it.

NASCAR was faced with the fact that often several of the last races were pointless, fue to the points lead of the number one driver. In respose what did they do. Instituted a playoff type system, the (insert cellular company fo the month here) chase for the cup.

Now NASCAR has announced that all drivers outside the top 35 will qualify in the same session in order to keep them as competitively equal as possible. Last year the problem arose that several times throughout the year the drivers outside of the top 35, who have to qualify on time in order to make the race, were spread throughout the day. This tends to give one team an advantage over the other due to track condition and temperature.

It's not that these changes really matter to the casual fan. Especially not to the non-fan. The thing that really matters is that the people in charge at NASCAR, listen. When the fans speak, when their competitors speak.

Meanwhile Roger Goodell can't wait to suspend another player. Baseball is mired in steroids and an initial 82 games that don't matter to any one. Basketball is a gem unto itself, I know for sure David Stern is going to have every player in ashirt and tie I just don't know how the ref's are affording Armani suits, Donaghy anyone.

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