VROOM, VROOM!!! The most famous race in America was Sunday, the Daytona 500 and you probably missed it.
Growing up I loved watching NASCAR on Sundays with my dad, it was something to have in the background and we could cheer on our favorite drivers. More recently it seems I may have grown out of my love for NASCAR, but why? Racing is fun! One of my favorite weekends last summer include me and a few guys from the radio stations driving up to Arlington for Saturday night races. So why is NASCAR boring to me?
I caught some of the Sunday’s race and found out that NASCAR has a new premier sponsor, new as in 2017, oops! Monster Energy Drink replaced Sprint as the Cup Series sponsor, Monster who works with motocross, Monster Jam, mountain biking, and bull riding, seems to be a great choice as NASCAR tries to grab the attention of a new, younger audience. Attendance and TV numbers are down, so it’s not just me who is yawning and turning channels away from NASCAR, and older fans are feeling alienated because of NASCAR’s new plan. Problem with the younger demos, they don’t feel the same way about cars; they provide transportation, not thrills and excitement of American muscle! NASCAR is also missing the names, gone are Jeff Gordon and Dale Jr. Sadly the Busch brothers are too dramatic and not exciting enough to garner mainstream attention. Plus it’s a very long season, February to November!
Something that also changed seasons ago, NASCAR’s big rule change introducing stages. Wow! Who’s terrible idea was this? Instead of driving laps and letting cautions fall where they may, now regular point races have a stage break after the first quarter of the event and then again at halfway. During the stage break, there’s caution, the cars bunch back up, and drivers get points on where they crossed the line. I get it, they are doing this to try to catch more eyes on TV when there are only a few laps to run you’re more likely to watch than if there is 100 to go. Maybe I’m old school, but I much prefer the endurance of driving 200 laps and seeing whos on top at the end of the race.
Very long rant, summed up… I love cars and racing, I use to be a fan of NASCAR, but it no longer draws me in. Through all the changes, I’m not sure if they have gained anything.
OH! The 61st running of the Great American Race on Sunday at Daytona International Speedway was won by Denny Hamlin who held off teammate Kyle Busch to win the Daytona 500 for the 2nd time.