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Blog Entry

Garage Chatter - November, 28, 2008

Posted on: November 28, 2008 1:19 pm
Edited on: November 28, 2008 5:53 pm
 
The engines are quiet and the offseason is now in full swing. But the news keeps coming even in NASCAR's down time so we'll stay on top of it every week throughout the winter in our "Garage Chatter" blog. Here we'll share with you some insider news and rumors we're hearing as teams and drivers get ready for the opening bell at Daytona in less than 75 days. The annual Sprint Cup Awards Banquet in New York, the pre-season NASCAR Media Tour in Charlotte and the 24 Hours of Daytona in January are the traditional offseason "tent poles" to get us through the long winter and back to dropping the green flag during "Speedweeks" in February:

MORE CUTS

Bill Davis Racing is the latest NASCAR operation to cut back its staff. Although Davis has said he will run for the truck series championship again next year as well as field a full-time Sprint Cup entry, no sponsorship for either endeavor seems on the horizon. This year's truck champ Johnny Benson will move to Red Horse Racing next year and BDR's Cup pilot Dave Blaney is unsure about his future as well. With the merger between BDR and GEM now off, the road ahead looks rough for Bill and Gail Davis.

CAREER SWITCH

Ray Evernham has gone from crew chief to team owner to television announcer. Now he's about to embark on a new career - track owner. Evernham has purchased East Lincoln Speedway, a small North Carolina short track. He plans on running the weekly dirt track in 2009 and has sold virtually all of his interest in the Gillett Evernham Motorsports team, which will still carry his name next year. But Evernham plans to focus on his new track venture and an enhanced role on ESPN.

TV PLANS

Speaking of ESPN, the network is working with another NASCAR television partner in FOX to try and cut costs for televising NASCAR races in 2009. While viewers most likely won't notice anything drastic, at-track personnel, less cameras and maybe some shared resources between the networks are said to be in the works as television looks to save production money in the wake of falling NASCAR ratings.

PETTY TURNING LEFT AND RIGHT

It appears Kyle Petty's NASCAR racing days are numbered and that he will make good on his promise to become a sports car racer next season. Petty tested a Grand American Road Racing Daytona Prototype again last week and is close to a deal to compete in the entire 14-race series next season. Petty will most likely run a handful of Sprint Cup races with sponsor Wells Fargo on board, but whether those are with his family's team or not remains to be seen. Petty will do six TNT races again next year as a booth analyst and is said to be relishing the fact he won't have to be on the 36 race Sprint Cup grind any longer.

TESTING TURMOIL

Jack Roush is trying to get fellow NASCAR team owners to sign a contract promising a complete ban on testing in 2009. NASCAR has mandated that teams stop testing at sanctioned tracks, but that would not prohibit sessions at other tracks around the country not under the sanctioning body's rule or from building their own test facilities. But Roush's idea is reportedly being met with less than enthusiastic response from some of the sport's big name owners which leads me to believe places like Rockingham Speedway, New Smyrna Speedway, Virginia International Raceway and Pikes Peak Int'l Raceway will be busy testing tracks next season.

Category: Auto Racing
Tags: NASCAR
 
Comments

Since: Oct 9, 2006
Posted on: December 1, 2008 9:14 am
 

Garage Chatter - November, 28, 2008

Unfortunately I think it is all about the cost factor.  Think of the expense of sending a television crew to cover those races as opposed to just rerunning a show they've already paid for.  The true race fans that would watch are defiitely missing out on some great racing but I believe that the networks cater to the fans that don't realize NASCAR or racing existed before Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon came onto the scene.  Nothing against those particular two drivers but if it weren't for the drivers of the 70's and 80's NASCAR wouldn't exist for them to make their livings today.



Since: Nov 8, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2008 8:45 pm
 

Garage Chatter - November, 28, 2008

I Am A Huge Sprint Car Fan And Would Love To See A Weekly Televised Series like ESPN Used to do with there Thunder Series . I Do Believe there is A Market for it .USAC Or The Outlaws would Draw Fans in . Race on A Thursday Night Or Something Like That .Make It Happen CBS .



Since: Nov 30, 2008
Posted on: November 30, 2008 5:31 pm
 

Garage Chatter - November, 28, 2008

Well said speed! I too am old school and would love to see a channel called "speed" actually show some speed. Even reruns of Winston Cup races of the past would beat the crap America's racing channel is showing



Since: Sep 17, 2006
Posted on: November 30, 2008 1:19 am
 

Garage Chatter - November, 28, 2008

Speed Demon,  spoken like a true race fan, wow! you nailed it, your comments are not only on point, they are classic.... i am a huge NASCAR fan, but just because the season has ended doesn't mean racing has ended....step it up SPEED channel, shows like pass time and all of that other BS are crap. Show other series of racing......there is nothing to do with SPEED, with that show UNIQUE WHIPS...!!!



Since: Aug 11, 2008
Posted on: November 29, 2008 1:32 pm
 

variety

We have lost the variety of sports that makes a race fan and race fan. I'm picking on the speed channel in lament for no coverage of the 68th annual Turkey Night Grand Prix. Instead, we have endless re-runs of all their time filler shows. Just because the Nascar season has ended, does not mean there is no racing going on in the world. I would rather have coverage of lesser tier events at dirt/asphalt tracks around the country than endless re-runs of Pinks. I wish ESPN would have formed an ESPN-Speed channel and taken off with it. At least they used to show USAC on Thursday nights and the old Winter Heat series. TV coverage of USAC has disappeared; you have to record anything that involves Outlaws (other than a handful of major events). World Rally was more interesting than crap like Pass Time. I would rather watch lawn mower racing than Unique Whips.

CBS SPorts could do a better job of coverage (at least a brief results article) on such things as the Rolex Series, ALMS, World of Outlaws, USAC, Rally.

Maybe I'm just a product of a bygone era. I remember seeing sports I never would have been exposed to on the old ABC Wide World of Sports, and I miss it dearly. I remember seeing things like snowmobile racing (oval, not the suedo motocross stuff) and speedway bikes on ice - that was wild stuff. I don't need to know who the guy is that is racing - I just want to see them race!

So here in my winter of discontent, I hope that we will get a small slice of racing pie. So please serve up some racing folks - even if it's in Australia (they have a racing jones there too, and I can understand their accent better than the Brits!).  



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