Big News is No News
The already known and not much interested in announcement that NA$CAR now has its own celebrity spokesmodel happened. General fan reaction seems to be “Big Deal!”. Judging from the Twitter traffic of race fans the extreme lack of interest was bordering on truly apathetic. We already knew NA$CAR was getting the IndyCar celebrity spokesmodel. We know she only finished on the lead lap 42.8% of the time against the Buschwackers, underfunded teams, start and parks, and back markers of the Busch Series. And the Ivory Tower Gang is expecting to see a miracles immediately if not sooner with the hopes that NA$CAR’s newest highly hyped savior will save NA$CAR from itself by filling up the grandstands with young boys just hitting puberty looking for cheesy bathing suit pin-up posters to while away their nights with during their late night fantasies and buy tons of her overpriced swag to help fill the coffers. Ain’t gonna happen bubba.
I would’ve loved to have had a lie detector hooked up to Danican’t during the press conference. That thing would’ve melted because of its buzzer and lights going off as many as times as it would from the false statements. “If it was for money I would’ve gone a long time ago”. Say what? I seem to recall her complaints about NA$CAR having too long of a schedule and how she enjoyed a 17 race season and being able to lounge around the pool and traveling around. It definitely is for the money.
Here’s what Kyle Petty said in an interview with USA Today about NA$CAR’s new spokesmodel:
Petty said Patrick's progress should be judged against full-time Nationwide drivers who once raced in Cup, and that her "race-craft" — her ability to execute passes and not just maintain a competitive speed — is the next critical area.
"She is a fast learner," he said. "But what I don't like about the Danica thing is if the hype that surrounds it is greater than the product on the racetrack”.
"She is a marketing machine. Carl Edwards and Jeff Gordon aren't the marketing machine that she is. But at some point, the marketing and the talent have to meet to produce results. I'm just not seeing it yet”.
"I'm all for giving her time, but I'm also all for killing the frigging hype. How long will the racing world buy the hype and not the performance?"
Also uncertain is whether Patrick will defer a lifelong dream of winning the Indianapolis 500, and whether a one-off attempt at the Brickyard in May would have an adverse impact on her NASCAR schedule. In a May interview with USA TODAY, GoDaddy CEO Bob Parsons said he expected Patrick still would run Indy next year.
"I think in her heart and her head, she's still an open-wheel driver who wants to win the Indy 500," Petty said. "But where the money is for her is (in NASCAR), so this is where she has to go. At least she is here. … The biggest thing I get out of this announcement is that she's committed to NASCAR. She's not sticking her foot in the water. She's in, and that's a huge statement. In the past, she hasn't been committed to the sport."
"But where the money is for her is (in NASCAR), so this is where she has to go”. “She is a marketing machine. Carl Edwards and Jeff Gordon aren't the marketing machine that she is”. There it is in a nutshell. Money. Marketing machine. There is only one mention of her as a driver and it’s in reference to IndyCar, which I’ll get to later. And as far as her being committed, is she really committed to being a driver, making all of the sponsor appearances that go with a 35 or 36 race schedule, and dealing with the fans in a much better manner than she has to this point? Is she going to be willing to show up at a children’s hospital with other drivers? Will she show up at a charity event with drivers in support of their children’s charities where they make appearances? So far she’s done a fine job of mouthing off to fans simply wanting an autograph and has yet to make an appearance at a children’s hospital when other IndyCar drivers have and she was invited to. And how about her remarks about not liking road racing when there will probably be 2 more road races added to the Busch Series schedule? Will she be making a call to 1-800-WAA-AAAH because she has to drive on road courses? Can she cut the mustard as NA$CAR’s celebrity spokesmodel in the Busch Series much less in a Cup race? I sincerely doubt it. Why? Comments made during some of her Busch Series races about the other drivers “racing me to hard”. This isn’t supposed to be “ladies before gentlemen”. It’s racing. The job of a race car driver is to race to win which means that drivers will race hard to get the win. They will also race hard not to get lapped. So if you can’t stand the heat in the Busch Series kitchen, I hate to think how you’ll react when you have to go door to door with some of the Cup drivers.
And what about the actual schedule itself. The famous celebrity spokesmodel has said she doesn’t like racing on road courses and prefers ovals. Guess what? Since Gateway and Nashville closed their doors, 2 more road races are going to be added to the schedule. If you thought you hated driving a road course in a relatively light Indy car, you’re really going to hate it in a heavy Busch Series car.
The GropeDaddy CEO said in a May interview he expected the celebrity spokesmodel to still would run Indy next year. Guess what? Unless her Busch Series or Cup Series car owner buys a car for her to race in, it’s not going to happen. She burned too many bridges with team owners, engineers, crew chiefs, and strategists in IndyCar and there was a big sigh of relief when she made her announcement today. Of course, there was probably some money exchanged between Andretti Motorsports, Tony Stewart, and Dale Jr/Rick Hendrick to get her out of any contractual obligations she had remaining with Andretti. So she is now the problem and responsibility of Stewart-Haas and JR Motorsports. I sure hope they can afford the new Indy cars, engines, and replacement cars.
Faux King Brian’s comment that he is happy that she is bringing her talent to NA$CAR to compete with the best drivers in the world. Again, she is not a driver, but rather a brand/celebrity/spokesmodel. And best drivers in the world and most loyal fan base? BZF has been tipping back too many “sodas” again. Viewership numbers have been steadily dropping, seats are empty, and NA$CAR/I$C is losing money hand over fist, so what loyal fans is he talking about? The Dale Jr fans? The Short Attention Span Crowd he brought in to replace all the “good ole boys” who followed the sport since before Faux King Brian was even a gleam in daddy’s eye? I know many people that have turned off NA$CAR. The poor ratings attest to that. And the empty grandstands were happening before the economy went Tango Uniform and has only gotten worse. So what loyal fans is he referring to? And best drivers in the world? The Cup drivers don’t even race in the rain so they definitely don’t qualify as the best in the world.
Kyle Petty’s reference to the hype is so very true. Has anyone really noticed how the drivers that NA$CAR has hyped have fallen on their face? They hyped Burnt Toast and he fell on his face. They hyped Hambone and he fell flat on his. They continue to hype Dale Jr and his performance isn’t what it was before the Hype Machine took over. How long will the racing world buy the hype and not the performance as Kyle Petty and myself have both asked?
And what happened to Faux King Brian’s big welcome to Dario Franchitti when he tried NA$CAR? Or Jacque Villeneuve? Oh, that’s right. They’re not marketing machines or celebrity spokesmodels. They’re race car drivers. When Dario showed up, there was little to no hype even though he was the reigning IndyCar champ AND is married to Ashley Judd, a Hollywood A Lister. How could the Hype Machine miss that one? And look at all the hype surrounding Shrubbery’s win record? Like Kyle Petty said, “When he gets 200 Cup wins then come talk to me”. NA$CAR’s Hype Machine needs to rust to a screeching halt and let results actually speak for themselves.
Anyways, welcome to Brian's Big Top Danican't where you'll be welcome til the hype wears itself out and owners get tired of you not living up to it.