28 July 2008

Unprecedented: Three-Way Tie at the Brickyard

They had the running of the Stink/Suck/Fail 400 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway yesterday. Amazingly enough, NASCAR, Goodyear and Tony George crossed the finish line at exactly the same moment.
The 15th running of the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard was plagued by tires that couldn't last more than 10 or 15 laps without shredding apart on the 2.5-mile speedway's abrasive surface. So NASCAR threw the caution flag every dozen laps or so, allowing teams to bolt on fresh rubber. But that meant the 160-lap race turned into a series of 10- or 12-lap heats. By the time Johnson's Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet took the checkered flag, there had been a race-record 52 laps run under yellow -- or nearly one-third of the race.
Legitimate motorsport competition can be found in MotoGP, the ALMS and the NHRA; they just can't often be found on tee vee, like NASCAR, Jerry Springer and Desperate Housewives.

UPDATE: More fodder for the "NASCAR is diseased" file:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- NASCAR tried to even out the competition in the Nationwide Series on Wednesday by ordering all teams using Toyota motors to squeeze down their horsepower before this weekend's race in Indianapolis. Toyota has won 14 of 21 races this season in the Nationwide Series, and all but one came in a Camry fielded by Joe Gibbs Racing.

Going too fast? In auto racing? What NERVE Toyota has . . .
Robin Pemberton, vice president of competition (no irony there!), said the
Toyota motors are legal and in line with previous guidelines. But NASCAR is
responsible for maintaining a level playing field, and because Toyota is new to
the sport and working with new designs, the manufacturer has gained an advantage
over Chevrolet, Dodge and Ford.
Innovation? In auto racing? What NERVE Toyota has . . .

Oh yea, by all means; clip the Toyotas' wings - wouldn't want Chevy, Dodge and Ford to have to do the work to go any faster would we? "Attention, Toyota: Stop being so good with your racing car or pay the consequences."

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