Let the Hype Begin
If you’ve seen the commercials for the Daytona 500 on Focks during the football play-offs, you’ll have noticed that it’s not the race that’s being hyped but NA$CAR’s celebrity spokesmodel that’s being hyped. She has yet to turn one competitive lap in a Cup car at Daytona and yet the hype is overwhelming. So when the race isn’t in the “All Waltrip All the Time” mode, it’ll be in the “All Danican’t All the Time” mode.
Cruel & Unusual Punishment?
For those fans who may have missed the announcement, Focks will have both of the Motormouth brothers on Focks during the race broadcast. As usual, Jabber Jaws will be in the booth with Motormouth Mikey being in the Hollyweird Motel bumping Hollyweird Hambone to the position of roving reporter. With both Motormouth brothers flapping their gums fast enough to break the sound barrier while they‘re cheerleading & shilling, don’t expect to hear anyone else get a word in edge-wise. Not even Larry Mac with his new Larry Mac to English Dictionary.
Could this be a deliberate attempt by Focks to drive their ratings down to rock bottom so when the TV contract renewal comes up they can go cheap? Something to think about.
When the Cup teams went to Daytona to test, Robin Pemberton stated that the teams would race in packs. That was a statement, not a suggestion, which means that once again NA$CAR is trying to mandate driver actions and help manipulate the race similar to what Bill France Sr did at Talladega back in the 60’s when the well-known drivers of the time went on strike because they felt the speeds were too high and that the tires couldn’t handle it leaving a bunch of relative unknowns to compete. Bill France Sr dictated how fast the cars would be driven. What we’re seeing now is the same sort of manipulation to make the race artificially exciting rather than let the drivers actually race, even if it is the two car Brokeback racing we’ve seen the last couple of years.
Missing from the pack racing practice on the last day was SHR which packed up and went home. Considering that NA$CAR’s Celebrity Spokesmodel didn’t have the opportunity to participate in the pack practice, odds are you can expect to see her involved in “The Big One”.
Simona Di Silvestro took the new Lotus Indy car through its paces at Palm Beach International Raceway and Sebring International Raceway. From what I’ve read, Lotus will be running both of their famous livery colors. The BRG & yellow and the black & gold. So for whichever era of Lotus racing you enjoyed, you’ll see a reminder of it.
Dragon Racing, owned by Jay Penske, will be fielding the new Lotus car with Sebastien Bourdais and Katherine Legge behind the wheel. That now makes 2 female drivers behind the wheels of Lotus cars in IndyCar. It’ll be interesting to see Katherine and Simona compare notes of their cars and set-ups while the new car is going through testing. Lotus plans to put 1,000 miles on the current test engine before the testing at Homestead on Jan 23-24. That’s about what Lotus figures to be about half the life cycle of the engine.
On the F-1 side of the Lotus effort, they pioneered an adjustable suspension system which works off of the braking system. Since the driver cannot make the adjustments from the cockpit, FIA has ruled it’s legal despite numerous complaints from other F-1 teams. Once again, we’re seeing racing innovation being made. Hello? NA$CAR?
While Robby Gordon didn’t win the rally, he did win a stage or two of it. However, despite having been passed, the sanctioning body said that Robby ran an illegal engine then changed it to illegal duct work doing their best imitation of NA$CAR changing rules in mid-race. Apparently politics came into play after Robby won the final stage of the Rally. It seems that Peterhansel (no, that’s not a German bedroom toy) was supposed to win the last stage but Robby rocked the boat on that one. In an earlier stage of the rally, Robby was trying to pass Peterhansel using the rally’s equivalent to a horn (called a sentinel) however Peterhansel refused to move over and allow the faster Gordon to pass him. Peterhansel should’ve been penalized but wasn’t. Robby had some “kind words” for the Dakar Rally sanctioning body, ASO. One was he might be back next year. The second was “They can kiss my a$$”. While it was a learning experience for Robby, he’s also found another sanctioning body that likes to change rules in mid-race.
RPM & Busch
In one of those “No Duh” statements, RPM stated that the reason they didn’t sign Busch the Elder was that he was poison to sponsors. And it took The King how long to figure that out? I guess he’s getting a little bit slower with age.
Then there’s also the Roush Factor. Considering what Busch the Elder did and said about Roush when he drove for Roush racing, there’s still a lot of animosity there and since Roush builds the engines and cars for RPM, it’s a sure bet that The King wouldn’t have had any new cars or engines had he signed Busch the Elder.
Busch the Elder must be anticipating getting a number of black eyes this season as he’s signed with an eyewear company for sponsorship on the Phoenix Racing car. Last black eye I seem to remember Busch the Elder had came at the hands of Mr Excitement, Jimmy Spencer. However, Busch the Elder has given a number of black eyes to team owners & sponsors. So being able to hide a black eye is important and I’m sure those sunglasses will do a good job.
As to the length of Busch the Elder’s tenure at Phoenix Racing, I’d say it’ll last as long as his past chump provisionals are needed. Then he’ll get the boot the same way Bill Elliott did.
200 MPH Mustang Coming in 2014
When Ford revamps the Mustang for its 60th anniversary celebration, the GT-500 and Mustang Cobra will be equipped with turbo V-8’s that will allow this street car to reach 200 MPH. And as it will be a production model and meets the basic eligibility requirements of a production car, will NA$CAR allow this car to be raced? After all, it is a stock car and isn’t racing stock cars what NA$CAR is supposed to be about?
Bill Lester Rides Again
After being unceremoniously dumped by Autohaus despite a 2nd place season finish, Bill will be back on track in the #18 Muehlner Motorsports Porsche GT 3 for the 24 Hours of Daytona. As it currently stands, this is a one race deal however, I’m sure it will go beyond that based on Bill’s skills and previous experience.
Old Dog, Same Old Tricks
Johnny Benson was planning to make a comeback in 2012 in the Truck Series right up until his sponsor was stolen by NA$CAR’s conjoined incestuous twin I$C to sponsor a race at Michigan. NA$CAR and I$C stealing sponsors is nothing new. They’ve been doing it for decades. However, in these tough economic times, you’d think that with TV contract money coming in and having plenty of sponsors of their own, that they’d leave the sponsor of a popular and well-liked driver like Johnny Benson alone so he could help put butts in the grandstands. But greed trumps common sense once again in the Ivory Towers of Daytona.
In case you missed it, there was a laptop containing drivers’ and NA$CAR officials names and other information that belonged to Aegis Labs that was stolen a while back. Naturally, NA$CAR & Aegis Labs said there was nothing important on the computer and that the laptop was probably in a pawn shop. Wouldn’t it be funny if it turned up on E-Bay with all that supposedly unimportant information on it going to the highest bidder? Or if somebody’s, like Faux King Brian’s, ID was stolen. I can just hear it now. His Royal Highness on the phone talking to Mister Card about a charge on his card. “What do you mean I sent Jeremy Mayfield two dozen roses, a box of chocolates, and a note saying ‘Come back. All is forgiven XOXOXO’?”. Or John Darby talking to American Excuse, “What do you mean I bought a lifetime membership in the Hair Club for Men?”. Or Shrubbery talking to Whiner’s Club, “What do you mean I sent a ton of M&M’s to a diabetic ward? Oh wait, I did. Never mind”.