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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Cars or drivers? ... Why do Chevys win so many titles?

1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009.

What do these years have in common? These years, 18 out of the past 26, a Chevrolet has been the vehicle driven by the Cup champion. The other 9 have been split between Ford and Pontiac, and with Pontiac taking 3, that means a GM product has been the champ 21 of those 26 years.

This brings up a key question: Why is this so?

Ford has been competing during this entire stretch and only claimed five titles, despite having some very talented drivers along the way. Are the Chevys more reliable, or do they just have the best drivers inside of them.

As I see it, the answer is probably a little bit of both. As evidenced by this weekend's Roush blowup parade, and the rare occurrence of a Hendrick or RCR car blowing up, it seems that currently the Chevys are more reliable.

But you can't ignore the driver element. As they say, success breeds success. and if you've won titles in the past, the top drivers will be drawn to your brand. Talented drivers like Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson know that a brand that has won so many titles is probably a good place to plant yourself. Jeff Gordon, in fact, started out as a Ford driver in the Busch Series, and was lured by Rick Hendrick over to Chevy.

If he had been driving Fords since November of 1992, would he have four titles and be battling for a fifth? We'll never know, but it's fair to say that it's less likely.

I'm not trying to knock Ford, Toyota and Dodge, but for whatever reason the Bowtie Brigade tends to rise to the top. Some people will claim a conspiracy theory and say that NASCAR wants Chevy to win, but I don't fall in that category.

I think it's pretty simple. They've won in the past, make good cars and attract good drivers. The other car makes need to find a way to get more reliable and be more competitive for the title.

Old faces return
You can't keep Ken Schrader down. Away from the Cup series for a while, Ken Schrader -- who has raced everything on wheels for the past several decades -- will attempt to qualify for the Cup races at Martinsville and Talledega in the #26 Ford. He will also race at Talledega in Kevin Harvick's #2 truck.

Also, there are reports that SPEED reporter and former driver Hermie Sadler may run the Cup race at Martinsville in the #71 Chevy.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look Chevy has great teams and drivers, but so do the other teams!

Nascar ever changing rules that favor Chevy! If another brand pick anyone Dodge Ford Toyota was wining like Jimmy Johnson, you would see a quick rule changes!

You have to be a Car Fan, which Nascar has run out of the sport to know the rules and favor that a driver fan will not see!

I remember all the rule changes Bill Elliot had to overcome in the 1980s becaused he lapped the field at Talledaga, but Darrell Waltrip driving Jr Johnson Chevy could consistly lap the field at N Wilkesboro, and nothing done, that was because of the team not the car. ha!@ The Jr switched to Ford, could not get away with as much remember the Winston at Charlotte in the early ninties, he had to park the car and banned for 3 races, Jeff Gordon and Jimmy Johnson have cars that are more illiegal at the Winston and nothing done!
After Dale and Jeff Gordons total point title domnination in the ninties Chevy gets a new SB2 engine, the after total domination in the 2000s they get another new engine the RO7, YOU DONT GIVE NEW ENGINES TO DOMINANT TEAMS if you want even it up!
Cannot go to most restrictor plate races without a Chevy getting to dominate speedweek,they won 18 out of aprox 20 at Talledaga mostly different drivers to!
Remember the 2000 Daytona 500 and Speedweeks, it was the last time a nother brand got to dominate Speedweeks at Daytona, all you could hear was the Chevy loggy complain and Nascar made sure it didnt happen again!

Already Toyota is finding out about the Chevy lobby in Nascar, they have to run restrictor plates in the Nationwide series!

Whats wrong if Ford or Dodge or Toyota had won 7 Daytona 500s in a row???? Dont they have the rights?

No drivers in Chevys have a easier time winning because of Nascar!
Would love to see Chad and Johnson switch brands of cars and see how great they are, before two point titles their wins would be clipped!

October 13, 2010 at 11:18 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matt,Matt,Matt,you pup! Please go back to the 1960s and see what Nascar did to Chrysler when they showed up with the 426 Hemi and later to Ford when they showed up with the DOHC 427,the 428,and the Boss 429 (a semi hemi).They were all banned! Rather than telling GM to step up they protected them from having to perform.

October 13, 2010 at 12:22 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well when the majority of the field is Chevy you should win the Manufacture Championship.
you have what 2 dodges about 10 fords 10/12 Toyotas and the rest Chevies

October 13, 2010 at 3:32 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems when someone is getting too close there is a rash of equipment malfunctions (Edwards in 2008 and last week and Biffle and Kennseth) (nothing happened to Petty cars or Ragan) or rule violations such as happened to Mark Martin years ago or even Bowyer even if he is in a CHevy.

October 13, 2010 at 4:09 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you went back as far as I do following Nascar(early 1960s), you would know the answers to your own question. 40 years of favoritism to GM & Chevies has created the Chevy superteams that dominate now. Nascar has a long history of coughing up rules that assure GM dominance, starting with the banning of the Chrysler & Ford Hemis, favorable wheelbase & weight rules for Chevies, banning special-for-racing bodies of Chrysler & Ford (like the now famous winged cars) only to allow the special-for-racing GM "aero-coupes" when the annointed GM favorite (Earnhart) couldn't keep up with the Elliot's T-bird, quickly approving any new motor that GM engineers come up with while dragging their feet on approving any innovations that other manufacturers come up with (or quickly rescinding them, like the Dodge motor in 2002 when GM teams whine about them)and on and on. 40 years of such favoritism has created the image of invincible race teams that attract the majority of big $$ sponsors which enables them to hire the best engineers, crewmembers etc and guarantees their success.

October 14, 2010 at 3:03 AM 
Anonymous John Wall from Truck Driving Jobs said...

It has been a great year for Team Chevy in many respects, but especially in the restrictor plate races. In 2010 they have won the three plate races run so far this season, and will be going for that fourth one this weekend to complete the sweep.

November 1, 2010 at 2:56 PM 

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