Thursday, February 8, 2018

Survivor, Mooresville Edition

I've been waiting until the NASCAR offseason is over to share some info I heard over the winter concerning the future of the sport. First, I think we all know that NASCAR is not in a good place currently. Attendance, TV ratings, car counts, sponsorship dollars, corporate sponsors, new fans... all are disappearing each year.

While attending a holiday party I met an engineer with JRM. He had just wrapped up his rookie year after graduating school. He was not even particularly a race fan. Took the job for the money and the chance to be involved with a major sport. He said plenty of the younger engineers in NASCAR are looking at this as a stepping stone. The non-fan employees of race teams are very certain that NASCAR won't remain viable for very much longer.

How much longer will NASCAR, as we now know it, survive? It's a danger sign when employees of an organization show no faith, and are seeking alternative employment options.

Sunday, August 13, 2017


If NASCAR is already on life support, is there any way to save the sport? That's a very slim possibility. With today's youth being more attracted to technology, and not mechanics, there is not much chance to grab the young demographic. The last boom time in NASCAR were the mid-90s to mid-2000s. Plenty of new tracks, new sponsors, and new fans during that decade of growth.

The sponsors drove the sport back then. Fortune 500 companies, tech firms, entertainment platforms, etc all came and went. Bringing new fans with them. Most of the huge sponsors used NASCAR as a way to reward thousands of their employees and entertain customers. Hospitality at the track meant as much to those sponsors as the tv time their logo received on the side of a car. 

If NASCAR is serious about gaining fans they need to reward long time fans, instead of gouging them, and attract new fans with hospitality and interaction. Of course, it will take much more than this to bring the crowds back. But, better on-track action will not attract new fans. Something else is needed to pull them in.

Saturday, August 5, 2017


What went wrong with NASCAR? What will be the 'cause of death'? Mismanagement is the primary killer, but there are so many secondary factors. I will review a couple that NASCAR never addressed... at their peril.

Most older fans grew up during this country's love affair with the automobile... the car culture. These were the die hard NASCAR fans. They related to the speed, and mechanics of racing. Now, we can't tell a factory Ultima from a factory Fusion. How many people still change their own oil, let alone perform any after market modifications on their rides? 

We went from car culture to an internet world, where everyone is connected and anything is available at the touch of a keyboard. NASCAR missed the boat on this conversion. Their biggest chance to make new, younger, fans was through the web. They should have concentrated on interactive, fantasy, virtual reality, type connections with potential fans. Instead, they are still ironing the wrinkles out of the worst website a major sport has ever debuted.

When NASCAR's biggest benefactor of all time, RJ Reynolds, was being regulated out of business, they went global to try and gain market share. NASCAR tried to emulate this globalism, when they should have tried to grow their base in the US. There are plenty of fans here to attract without going overseas. 

Next: Can anything save the sport?

Friday, August 4, 2017


NASCAR, as we knew and loved it, is dead and is not coming back. Once you realize that fact, it is easier to understand what their owners are doing. The brain trust at NASCAR realize their time is up and are planning the exit strategy best for them.

With that in mind, they really have no interest in spending time and money on "saving" NASCAR. They are actually helping their stakeholders by not trying to make NASCAR great again. Currently they are squeezing the last few dollars out of the last big TV contract they will ever see. The next TV deal will likely be the last for NASCAR as we know it. The only play NASCAR has after that contract is to be bought out by a TV network, or internet entity desperate for content. What's left of the France family ownership is betting on that final payday to sail off into the sunset.

Next: What went wrong, and is there any way to save NASCAR

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Slap On The Wrists

Once again NASCAR's crack team of inspectors has detected something illegal on a car... after a race. Brad Keselowski's Penske Racing Ford was found to be not up to specified tolerances via laser technology... after the race. This, of course, will merit some sort of NASCAR "penalty" against the #2 car at an upcoming event. To help some of you 'fans' out, I am publishing the "punishments" per minor penalty as NASCAR has them noted in their "rule book".

Chapter IX, Section 43.43 Penalties per minor infractions:

1-10 Infractions: Hand written notes to all inspectors saying you're sorry.

11-20 Infractions: Team members will have to take their seats at the next drivers meeting after everyone else is seated.

21-30 Infractions: Team hauler has to wait after the race until all other transporters have exited the track.

31-40 Infractions: Driver won't be 'interviewed' during Mikey's pre-race pit walk. Seems counterproductive, I know.

41-50 Infractions: Driver's motor coach will be parked alongside entry gate and driver will be forced to sign autographs, in full uniform, through the fence all weekend when not in the car.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Much Ado Over The Carl

Social media is always good for a laugh. Where else can you hear the thoughts of so many self professed experts? And, NASCAR fans are just as opinionated as any of the other know-it-alls. So, once again, at long last, Spinout returns to set them straight.

First... the matter of Carl Edwards 'moving' teammate Kyle Busch out of the way, and taking the win at Richmond on Sunday. While I didn't care for the maneuver, if that's what it takes to win (in a supposedly faster car) then whatevs.

This 'hit and pass' move resulted in plenty of dumb comments on the web....
Dumb: Kyle would have done the same thing.
Dumber: Kyle will get him back in the future.

Think about it and let us know just how many times Kyle Busch has "done the same thing"... on the last lap, for the win? Take your time, we've got all day.

Next... name the times that Kyle Busch has "got someone back" at a later date? Once the race is over, he's focused on the next race... not payback like some other weak minded competitors. There are plenty of other drivers that have wrecked Kyle, some on purpose, and I can't recall him ever keeping a 'hit list'.

Finally, what is the BFD about Mrs Kyle Busch lip syncing the "S" word? How petty can the haters be? No one cares. Or, are we all gonna hope and pray that the "new" Samantha Busch grows up, and meets everyone's earthly expectations?

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Wells Report to Change the NFL?

The Wells Report on the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal finally came out last Friday. Most of the findings were no surprise.... Richie Incognito is an asshole.... young, testosterone fueled males in a closed environment can be cruel to each other... Martin was a victim afraid to stand up to his peers.

I use the word 'scandal' very loosely in this case. Doesn't a scandal usually involve some laws being broken? This whole ordeal boils down to grown men calling other grown men names, and making disparaging remarks about one's family. Scandal? Hardly.

Many observers think that professional football players should act like business professionals. They are comparing a pro football team to a banking or real estate office. Some say since these guys are professional football players they should be held to the same standards as other professionals. Okay, but you can't go halfway on this.

If players are to be held to professional standards in the locker room, make sure they meet those standards elsewhere. Trash talking, name calling, and cursing during games? Heaven forbid, that would never fly at Delta Airlines. Throwing punches between teammates EVERY day during training camp? The professionals at IBM would never copy that behavior. Cutting their hair and hazing first year co-workers? I'm thinking that is a no-no at OK Magazine.

These are only a few examples of the difference between the NFL and our everyday workplaces. You can't bury Incognito while ignoring all the other non-professional, violent actions occurring in the NFL on a daily basis.

In no way is this meant to excuse Incognito for being a jerk. He is not the first player to act like this, though. The NFL needs to send a clear message, and Martin's upcoming lawsuit will send one even clearer.