NASCAR should take a hint from IndyCar

Discussion in 'Motorsports' started by MuscleCarHeart, Aug 4, 2009.

  1. Exciting finishes notably absent from recent Sprint Cup Series races.

    For about 15 years now, NASCAR has been showing its counterparts over in open-wheel racing how things are done in American racing. Mostly, NASCAR showed ChampCar and IndyCar how to become popular with American race fans.

    But following a Saturday night IndyCar race which few people saw because it was on a network which usually shows bicycle racing or animals being shot with very powerful guns, it could be open-wheel’s turn to provide the lesson.

    The Saturday IndyCar show was something that Sprint Cup shows rarely are these days. It was fabulously entertaining to watch.

    And it was that way thanks to fairly quick action on the part of Indy Racing League officials.

    NASCAR overtook open-wheel in terms of popularity in this country in the last decade by putting on good races which featured side-by-side and nose-to-tail racing on tracks where all of that was visible to those in the grandstands.

    NASCAR featured lead changes and dashes to the finish by people named Earnhardt and Pearson and Petty. On white flag laps, nobody knew who was going to be first to the checkered flag.

    Aero push? Drivers during NASCAR’s golden years knew slingshots.

    Then the sport got all sophisticated.

    In came engineers and wind tunnels and flow dynamics and coil binding and bump stops. Out went passing for the lead and fans launching to their tippy-toes in excitement on the final laps.

    Over the past few years, the IndyCars faired no better. The racing got so bad this season that after the June race at wonderful Richmond International Raceway, drivers — including the winning driver — spend post-race interviews apologizing to the fans for the deadly dullness of the previous couple of hours.

    IRL officials saw what was happening and acted. Aero changes were made to the cars. Nothing huge, just the addition of air deflectors and the removal of small wickers from the rear wings mostly.

    The change produced was huge, however. At Kentucky Speedway, one of those 1.5-mile ovals which have produced horrible racing in recent years, beauty returned to the sport.

    Racing for the lead was side-by-side lap after lap. When the checkers came down, fans had to watch the replay screens to be sure who won and by how much.

    NASCAR officials may want to review tapes of Saturday’s IndyCar race at Kentucky. They may want to call Brian Barnhart of the IRL and ask him just how he and his people did that.

    Yes, the economy is hurting NASCAR. Yes, bland drivers are taking a toll. And, yes, a substance-abuse scandal is pushing fans away.

    But the biggest, most pressing, A-No.1 problem Sprint Cup is having right now in keeping old fans and attracting new ones is boring racing.

    Fix that and the sport will be fixed.

  2. I think this has plagued all forms of motor sports for quite some time know. It is this quest for "racing fairness" that has literally brought down motor sports of all forms. Look at Nascar, F1, WRC, every car maker had their own body, it's on advantages, is own engineering and we got great racing. But now it seems every form of racing is turning into a spec series to give every driver a "fair" chance. NO!! good racing was when you knew that a driver didn't have the best car, but he pushed it to the limits and beat another driver with a superior car. That was using uhhmm, oh yeah skill, not wings and over-engineering aero parts and all the other crap the world of racing does today. Racing today has just turned to much into a spec series. I think a budget cap, then run what ya brung would give us all a healthy dose of high quality racing to all forms of motor sports.
  3. actually historically where there were large car variences you ended up with terrible racing. The 917s that won every single race, many cars winning by multiple laps, etc.

    spec series tend to bring about good, close racing.

    this article is stupid. Nascar has some of the best racing its ever had. Every race comes down to the last few laps. People only remember the few great races, not the dozens that were crap between it.
  4. Yes, i understand that when you have to large of a difference between cars that you will get worse racing. Although spec racing does bring close racing most of the time, it takes something away from the racing. If there are 5 manufactures competing in a spec series, then what exactly is the point of having 5 manufactures. Why not just have one and call it the Ford Super Series or whatever. I just prefer racing when the manufactures brought what they thought would win, and since you have engineers at every manufacture, you saw what those teams brought to the table.(ex: F1 in the 70's) Instead of everybody having the same body style, same exact hp, same exact car when everything is said and done.

    Im not disagreeing with you, i just kinda wish teams did what they used to do. Instead of how it is today <A BORDER="0" HREF=""><IMG BORDER="0" SRC="pitlane/emoticons/sad.gif"></A> And i realize the old days are long gone and will probably never happen again, but i can still hope! Haha
  5. you cant give engineers too much freedom or the cars get faster than drivers can handle or development costs skyrocket. the other thing that tends to happen is if you have 2 "paths" teams can take, (like larger motor with higher min weight vs light weight with smaller motor), one is figured out to be better very quickly and it becomes pointless.
  6. But that is were the budget cap would come in, and possibly a hp cap. I think a budget cap, the cars must pass a safety test, then some minor regulations, but do give the teams some freedom. And if one of the two paths turns out to be better, then that is the fault of the team and it's engineers, they should planed it out better or just flat out done a better job. Also, considering the 2 path route, as long as the series has alot of different tracks that show the strengths of both cars, i think there would be plenty of competition.

    Note: Im just talking about racing in general. I am not pertaining this argument to any specific racing series. But my argument would be best applied to a road racing series, with a prototype class. Le Mans, DP etc...
  7. might work with circle tracks too? some cars good for short tracks some cars better suited for larger tracks. But as stated to get this to work is extremely difficult.

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