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Monday, February 25, 2013

Daytona 500 a complete dud; terrible aero package prevents passing, creating a snoozefest

I’m gonna cut right to the chase here: The Daytona 500 that I watched on Sunday was a joke, and one of the worst races I’ve ever seen since I started watching the sport back in 1997.

The new Gen 6 car, which I pray is actually able to pass once we get to non-plate tracks, was pathetic  at Daytona. Just like the Shootout (aka Unlimited) and Twins 125s (aka Duels), there was basically no passing. it was single file on the top side of the racetrack all day on Sunday.

Translation: boring

This is NASCAR’s biggest showcase to the world, all sorts of new fans are showing up because someone named Danica won the pole, and guess what -- you put on a snoozefest. It was so boring, I found myself switching over to a basketball game toward the end of the race when absolutely nothing of note was happening.

I don’t ask for much at the plate tracks. Just competitive racing. I want drivers to be able to team up and pass the leader, and create at the very least some exciting finishes.

It’s clear that this is a terrible aero package and creates terrible racing. NASCAR needs to look back at what they were doing back in 1999, 2000 and 2001. There were plenty of awesome restrictor plate races back then, but since then it’s gotten worse and worse.
Everyone remembers 2001’s Daytona 500 for its tragic ending, but they’ve probably forgotten that had Earnhardt’s tragic accident not occurred (and the reason for it was not the aero package; it was lack of HANS, SAFER barriers, etc.), the racing that day would likely be remembered as among the most competitive and exciting events of all time. I was there, and it was an absolute thrill all day; the opposite of this past Sunday.
Remember the fall Talladega race of 2000, when Dale Earnhardt passed about 18 cars in the last couple laps to win his final race of his career? I’m pretty sure that would never happen with the new aero package and this Gen 6 car.

Bottom line: it’s time to go back to the drawing board when it comes to these new cars and the plate tracks. Otherwise, I might as well schedule a nice long nap for the two Talladega races and the July Daytona race.

If any fan can look me in the eye and tell me they enjoyed Sunday’s race, I’m gonna ask them what medication they’re on, because no passing = no good racing. There’s no denying that equation.


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