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Saturday, October 10, 2009

COT will bring more safety to Nationwide, but at what cost?

FIrst off, I'll give credit where credit is due. The COT has probably saved lives, or at least prevented serious driver injuries, since being introduced in the Cup series.

It does make sense to extend it to the Nationwide series. That is what will happen starting next year, when the Nationwide COT will be raced at Daytona in July, Michigan in August, Richmond in September and Charlotte in October. A full season with the COT is planned for 2011.

The trick, though, will be how much cost in involved.

The Nationwide series is already hurting. Only about 30 teams are attempting all the races this year, and the rest are mostly operating on shoestring budgets and picking and choosing their races.

It will be a challenge for many of the Nationwide teams to afford the extra cars needed to run the COT races in addition to their regular cars.

NASCAR should do everything it can to make sure the cost of the new cars is as affordable as possible, or they may have some very short fields in those four races.

Drug policy applies to France family, too
I was glad to see NASCAR kept to their drug use policy when a family member broke it. According to a Daytona Beach police report, J.C. France, a driver in NASCAR's Grand-Am Series, was arrested on charges of possession of narcotics and driving under the influence. A bag with a "white cakelike substance" was found during a traffic stop. France is the son of NASCAR board member Jim France.
Rather than sweeping this under the rug, which they probably could have done without much problem, they are treating him like "any other competitor" and he is indefinitely suspended.

Uniform times
I have to mention that I applaud the uniform start times for 2010. Finally, the fans' voices have been heard by NASCAR. It's a very simple concept, and should have been in place for a while.

Reutimann car illegal
Friday started out well for David Reutimann, but ended badly. He qualfied second, but his car was found to be illegal and he will start in the back. Look for a hefty penalty to come early next week. He said he crew made some really big changes, but it appears they went too far.


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