So, the idiot who runs NASCAR, Brian France, has come up with yet another idiotic rules change. Beginning this season, all races will be divided into three stages. The first 25% of a race is the first segment, the next 25% is the second one, and the rest of the race is the third. The first two segments will be stopped by a caution flag followed by a restart. Points will be awarded to drivers for each segment.
NASCAR is calling this an "enhancement". What it really is is a very bad idea.
I love stock car racing. I grew up attending races at tracks in the upstate New York area. In the 1970s, it was still fairly rare to have that week's race televised live in its entirety. It was more common to air races on tape delay, or to show portions of it as part of "Wide World Of Sports". The best way to make sure to catch all the action was to be at the track, and if that wasn't possible for a fan, radio broadcasts aired the races live.
My favorite driver on a national level was Richard Petty, and when my Uncle Joe got me his autograph for Christmas one year, I was thrilled.
NASCAR was founded by Bill France Sr. in 1948; he ran it and then his son Bill France Jr. ran it. Between the two of them they were in charge for fifty-five years. Every year for several years, the racing got better, the crowds grew larger and the money got bigger. I remember when Brian France took over from his father in 2003, when I made a prediction that he would ruin NASCAR.
I wish I had been wrong, I really do. But this person has just made every wrong move possible. This latest move may be the worst of them all.
This all ties into another post I'll be putting up tomorrow or the day after. I plan to discuss how much I wish that someone with very deep pockets would take on the N.F.L. or the N.B.A. or Major League Baseball or NASCAR. As I said, look for that post soon.
In the meanwhile, Rest In Peace, NASCAR as we knew it. Year of birth 1948, year of death 2017.