For many, that means a second, third or fourth cup of coffee. It also means a lengthy lists of things to do during what should be a busy winter week. NASCAR officials just wrapped up the media tour and might thinks it’s time to rest a bit before Daytona. But before refilling their collective mugs, there are three things NASCAR needs to add to their weekly to do list.
About that points system:
The message points were clear: NASCAR wants to reward winning because the fans want it. I have no problem embracing the concept, but the new delivery method has a big problem. Nascarnomics (a great follow by the way) analyzed the new points system for last year. To the delight of most NASCAR fans, Dale Earnhardt Jr. would have won last year’s Sprint Cup. That’s the same Dale Earnhardt Jr. who didn’t win last in 2013.
Sure, people would have raced differently knowing the standings. Still, drivers who race for points can and will still make the Chase. Working in the middle will keep you in contention until Homestead, and then we really get a Game 7 for NASCAR. Regardless, the narrative, real or perceived, of “Win or else” isn’t accurate. NASCAR needs to fix these message points this week.
Clear Brian Vickers
Lost in the blitz of media week was this report from Michael Waltrip Racing. Doctors cleared Vickers to return from that blood clot. NASCAR hasn’t.
Michael Waltrip Racing is slowly starting to recover from Richmond. Sponsors extended contracts; Clint Bowyer is thinking of doing the same; Ty Norris is off suspension. NASCAR is better when more teams can content. MLW was on the verge of its best season ever when Richmondgate happened. Getting Vickers cleared is another step forward for a team that needs to do well in 2014. NASCAR needs to fix the Vickers issue this week
Get Kurt Busch in the Indi 500
Busch wants to run it. Indi teams aren’t sure if there’s room. NASCAR has pull. Lots and lots of pull. The Indi 500 is a chance to get mainstream national media attention for one of its reclamation projects. Busch is an interesting person and former champion. Plus, the new points system allows for him to have a mulligan should there be issues at Indi.
For a sport always seeking headlines, this seems like an easy thing to do. And imagine what might happen if Busch actually wins the thing. It’s the type of thing we all can do on a Monday morning before starting that to do list.