Blog Entry

NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

Posted on: April 26, 2009 6:45 pm
Edited on: April 26, 2009 9:12 pm

Thrilling. Amazing. Unbelievable.

There are many different ways to describe Sunday's race at Talladega (be sure to read all about it here).

  • Read driver reaction: Keselowski | Edwards | Roush | Earnhardt/Newman
  • How about these?

    Insane. Ridiculous. Stupid. Dangerous.

    I'm curious as to what NASCAR's reaction will be to what happened this weekend at Talladega, most notably the last-lap wreck on Sunday.

    What ensued on the final lap all dates back to last October's penalty on Regan Smith, when he overtook Tony Stewart below the yellow line to beat him to the checkered flag at Talladega. NASCAR penalized him, giving Stewart the victory.

    Almost every driver not named Stewart thought the ruling was bogus and basically predicted Sunday's events. With NASCAR ruling with such a heavy hand, many drivers said if they were put in that position they would stick to their ground and if it led to a wreck, so be it. NASCAR was forcing their hands.

    And so it was Sunday.

    Keselowski said there was no way he was going below the yellow line and so when Edwards tried to block his momentum, he didn't back off or swerve, he just continued with his head of steam and the rest was history. What's more, Edwards didn't blame him.

    Imagine if Edwards' car had broken through the fencing and into the stands. Yes, the fence is built to withstand such a catastrophe, but there are no guarantees, and it's certainly nothing a track truly wants to see tested during a live event. As it was, there was debris that struck fans in the stands.

    That's what restrictor plates and NASCAR iron fist has wrought. Not only is NASCAR putting the drivers' safety at risk, but now the fans.

    Category: Auto Racing
    Tags: NASCAR, Talladega

    Since: Aug 15, 2006
    Posted on: April 29, 2009 12:50 pm

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    Brain, here is the events of the wreck as they happened.

    • Brad moved up the track, Carl moved up to block him
    • Brad dove to the bottom and Carl dove to block him but Brad was already beside him and Carl hit Brad
    • Carl's car went sideways and the rear lifed off the ground, the roof flaps deployed
    • Before Carl's car could settle down, Ryan Newman hit him, and he sent Carl in the air like a punter with a football
    • Carl's car ended up in the catch fence

    Now this wreck could have happened at any number of tracks including Lowes, Atlanta, and Las Vegas.  The difference is if it happened at these other tracks the cars would have been going over 200MPH instead of 190MPH.  So what happened with the car going into the catch fence had nothing to do with the yellow line at all.  It was driver error that caused that wreck nothing more.  If you want to put the blame somewhere else, blame Carls Spotter for not telling him Brad was underneath him.  But don't blame the track or yellow line, in the past we wouldn't be talking about the yellow line because there was grass not pavement.  the extra pavement was put there to keep the cars off the grass and keep them from digging into the dirt and flipping all over the place. In fact it worked a couple of times during the race,  with Michael Waltrip and Sam Hornish I believe.

    Since: Aug 16, 2006
    Posted on: April 29, 2009 7:44 am

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    And why did Keselowski hit Edwards?
    Brian, you have it backwards. Edwards hit Keselowski, not the other way around. Edwards moved down the track into Keselowski, so it was Carl doing the hitting in this situation.
    I saw that NASCAR stated they will be more strict in enforcing their rules, which is a joke since 1 penalty would meet the requirement of being more strict.

    Since: Aug 14, 2006
    Posted on: April 28, 2009 9:40 pm

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    Brian, my question would be even if the yellow line wasn't "in play". What reason would Keslowski have for moving over. goofybird, my respone to mikeyfan holds true here as well
    I don't disagree that Keselowski still could have held his line and wrecked Edwards even if the yellow-line rule wasn't in play, but most times, drivers would rather avoid wrecking another if they don't have to, especially at Talladega.

    Would Keselowski have held his line if the yellow-line rule wasn't in play? That's just something we'll never know.

    I do agree that blocking is just as much a factor and believe that's a behaviors NASCAR needs to penalize more than the bump drafting. Other racing series frown on blocking and in the interest of safety, NASCAR would be wise to do the same at Daytona and Talladega.

    Since: Aug 14, 2006
    Posted on: April 28, 2009 9:22 pm

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    Again, Brian, the car in the catch fence had nothing to do with Brad not going below the yellow line.  It all had to do with a car wrecking and another car hitting it while it was in the air. 
    Fact of the matter is, Edwards isn't in the postion to be hit by Newman unless he was first spun out by Keselowski.

    And why did Keselowski hit Edwards? Because he didn't want to get penalized for going below the yellow line. That's a fact straight from the horse's mouth.

    These drivers really don't want to wreck each other if they don't have to, especially at a track like Talladega. Most drivers would rather win clean if at all possible. That's why Regan Smith didn't wreck Stewart last year. He thought he was doing the right thing.

    As I said, last year when NASCAR made that call on Smith, drivers predicted what happened Sunday would happen. Could it have happened without the yellow line rule? Sure it could have. But by painting drivers into a corner, NASCAR made it a certainty that it would happen.

    Since: Feb 17, 2007
    Posted on: April 28, 2009 2:01 pm

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    Brian, my question would be even if the yellow line wasn't "in play". What reason would Keslowski have for moving over. He has a right to the position and the track he's on. if he's in the lane that Carl suddenly wants that's too bad. The fact that Carl came down trying to block seems to be missed because he wrecked.. not the fact that he wrecked himself because Keslowski did what he was both supposed to do and allowed to do. Maintain his position on the track, that's all Keslowski was required to do. He did that. The aftermath was a fluke ordeal and unfourtunate but slightly blown out of proportion. To say that the wreck was casue because a driver didn't have a lane to move over is just wrong. He didn't have to move over anyway even if he could. how often do you see a set of drivers up near the wall get "pinned" up there because someoen else is one lane down and simply doesn't move down to give them room and squeezes them out. Happens at Darlington religously, So the car outside has to maintain their position, or back off, they just can't move down without the risk of a wreck. Same deal hear, Carl was caught high, and had no right to move down but he tried to anyways, the rest is as they say racing. The ugly part of racing but still racing. 

    Since: Aug 15, 2006
    Posted on: April 28, 2009 1:19 pm

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    First to say that Carl's car going into the catch fence was the result of a driver not going below the yellow line, is a little out of line in my opinion, as that had nothing to do with why Carl's car was in the fence.  Did Brad holding his position and Carl coming down on him trying to block cause the wreck?  Yes it did, but if this happens at Charlotte in a couple of weeks because a driver refuses to go into the grass what will you say then.  At Charlotte the speeds will probably be higher than they were Sunday.

    No, the fact that Carl went into the fence was because he got Air Borne and was hit while the car was in the air by another car sending him flying into the fence.  What NASCAR needs to do is look at why the Carls car went Air Borne in the first place.  Is the Roof Flaps in the proper position for the COT?  Do they need to be Bigger?  Do they need to be small but more than 2 Flaps?  These are things that NASCAR can look at from that angle. 

    The next thing for NASCAR to look at is the Bump Stops.  Someone brought this up and I think it's a good idea that needs to be looked into.  The Bump Stops are there and minimizes the shock travel.  When Carl got hit did they unload thus thrusting the rear of the car in the air?

    And Last NASCAR can take a look at themselves and ask why didn't they enforce their no bump drafting rule in the corners.  All Day long we saw two cars running bumper to bumper around the track.  NASCAR stated no bump drafting in the corners well sorry but they allowed Brad to Push Carl through Turns 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 If NASCAR had black flagged that behavior early in the race then that wouldn't have happened. 

    Again, Brian, the car in the catch fence had nothing to do with Brad not going below the yellow line.  It all had to do with a car wrecking and another car hitting it while it was in the air. 

    Since: Dec 7, 2007
    Posted on: April 27, 2009 6:51 am

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    First, let's be thankful that Carl's accident today wasn't worse than it was.  Yes, accidents are part of NASCAR, as in all motorsports series.  3400 pound cars airborne are not good, no matter what some fans may think.  At least the saftey features put into the cars kept Edwards form severe injury.  Elliot Sadler's wild ride a few years ago at 'Dega should hae been a wakeup call on restrictor plate racing, but it wasn't.

    Carl is righr in that no one will do anything about the wreckfest there untill we lose someone.  Unfortunately, many of the fans are there because of the dangers on the track and if Junior can't win, they want to see carnage and wrecks.  Sunday they got their wish on the latter.  The yellow line rule needs to be flexible, especially on the last lap.  better yet, find a way to allow the drivers some throttle flexibility and keep the speeds down as well.  Maybe NASCAR will need to spend thier own money and at Talledega especially, just give every team two sealed 6 cylinder crate engines and say, boys this is what you run, no modifications to the engine.  No restrictor plate either.  Just a thought.  Still should provide for competitive racing.  It would have to be tested first.  May or may not be practical but it might be better than a car high into the fence and injured fans.

    Since: Oct 7, 2006
    Posted on: April 26, 2009 10:28 pm

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    ewww a couple hours later and that post doesn't look so good.  i guess my point was i don't know what. 

    Since: Aug 18, 2008
    Posted on: April 26, 2009 8:29 pm

    NASCAR Wouldn"t Change Anything No Matter What.

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    nbsp; I respect Edwards for being man enough for making his statement. I respect CBS SPORTS for posting this story. But the sad truth is that the France family would not change anything if people had died today. The sicko france family put plates on the cars for 1 reason. It was because Bill hung a 212 on the board at Dega in that Corrs number 9. If that had been most drivers Nascar would have done nothing. Nascar claimed the plates were because of Bobby getting up into the fence at the flag stand. For some sick azz reason Nascar loves the plates. This is stupid. Twenty cars were taken out early. Then this stupid crash at the finish.  No throttle responce is very dangerous. Nascar could fix this. If they had to they could make them drop to 6 cylinders at Daytona and Dega. But no these sick azz people love the drama. These clowns own Nascar and guess what. You have no choice, play their way or leave. Thats how it was told to the drivers bythe old man Bill France. I would love to see someone like Bruton Smith start another race series. Most of the drivers would gladly leave Narcar and their stupid rules. On the Thursday before he died, Dale Earnhadt Sr. was doing a interview about why Nascar wouldnt put up soft walls. Nascar said it would take 30 minutes to clean the track and fix the wall. Dale Earnhardt Sr. said on that day, i would rather them spend 30 minutes to fix the wall than to spend 30 minutes pulling me out of the car. The only reason Nascar put up the walls because a writer with a newspaper in Orlando, Fla took on Nascar and the France family and the pork chop  mike helton the mouth peice that runs Nascar that was caught in several lies about the soft walls. That writer with the Orlando Sentinel i think he has saved if not lives atleast he has saved some drivers from getting hurt. It will take someone like him to fight Nascar to get this plate trash stopped. If you want to read some of the stories, go to go to sport then archives then eithir nascar or Dale Earnhardt Sr. The stories will blow you mind. Now CBS Sports i callenge you to be like the writer from Orlando and go to war with Nascar, the france family, and fat boy pock chop mike helton that is the mouth peice of Nascar. This crazy action has to stop. Some writer needs to man up and grow a set of balls and gop after these clowns.

    Since: Oct 7, 2006
    Posted on: April 26, 2009 7:21 pm

    NASCAR rules force drivers to play dangerous game

    This is correct.  Nascar set the precedent by what they did to Smith last year....  glad a driver finally had the balls to say screw you Nascar, this is what you asked for.  Now, fans in the stands have been being injured by fans for years so this is not a first.  So maybe this is just another sanctimonious sports writers trying to prove how much more righteous he is than everyone else in the world.  Sportswriters......some of the most pathetic forms of life on the planet.

    The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or