The legendary English band Whitesnake, always ended each concert with the following lyrics. I believe they are appropriate to start this article. Of course, I added a line. It should be obvious.
I'm sad to say it's time to go
But, until we meet again along the road.
Remember this on your journey home,
When you hear the thunder roar you're not alone.
For it's not coming from a Cup race, like in years past
But, it's those pesty Truck Series boys passing you by,
as they now are the hottest ticket in NASCAR Land.
Remember rating gains don't lie.
We wish you well, we wish you well,
In times of trouble may your hearts be strong.
We wish you well, we wish you well,
Until we meet again,
We wish you well...
As I turn out the light, I'm ending my fan-hood for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in it's present state. I can bear no more.
The excitement has died. It's a sad, sad day when I find more interest in watching 'Bama against the Gamecocks rather than the NASCAR Banking 500.
No, I didn't just become a fan. I didn't start watching when the legend died but rather way back in 1977 when the racing was old school and exciting.
Once the races were shown on ESPN from 1981 to 2000, I missed watching one race back in 1999 when I got married. Any other race that I missed on TV was only because I was watching the action live.
But, when the reigns were passed from father to son, NASCAR made some changes that it didn't need and made a few that were very dumb.
Now, my friends, NASCAR's paying the price for being so stupid and thinking they knew what the fans wanted. Obviously they didn't.
But, seriously some people think the seats are empty because Junior just stinks and his Nation is simpling staying at home.
But yes, the economy does play a roll too.
Really it's the expansion to the white collar markets that's hurting NASCAR, leaving the die hard blue collar markets behind. Not the best way to treat the ones that kept you alive when so many didn't care or thought of you just a blue collar fad.
There's a reason it takes decades for expansion to happen in other sports, they just don't make multiple changes with venues year after year. They take the time to make sure big changes will be for their benefit rather than the other way around.
Then came the Chase, just because Kenseth was crowned champion with one race win. The fans wanted their sport's champ to have wins and so NASCAR tweaked the system.
But, now it stinks so f'in bad since it has turned into a one man show of late. I bet NASCAR thinks we love it still.
I say, should Jimmy survive Talladega, it's over since history shows no one will catch him. Just give him the trophy, spare us the boredom, and call it a season.
Then bring the Nationwide and the Camping World Truck Series front and center, since we know at least they really are racing and it's not just manufactured-based results.
Just look at the above picture. The stands are empty for a race in what, basically is, in NASCAR's backyard and a shame since it always sells out. It's sad especially considering that a 'Bama game attracts 92,000 fans and there's not an empty seat to be had.
Just when you thought it could get no worse, oh yes it did.
As the economy first started to look bad, the powers that be just had to roll out their baby, the "Car of Tomorrow." No one did their homework on this one and they couldn't wait.
But, they took the greatest show on earth, turned it into a snoozefest and the only good to come from the new ride were the safety features.
But, seriously they could have made those safety changes to the old car and I wouldn't be writing this piece.
With that said, it's time to move on, and say so long as you've lost another diehard fan.
But, have no fear I'll still be here hyping up the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. You might catch me on the NFL or NHL page and come next spring, the Red Sox page.
Oh I'll still read the Cup page, but the passion I once had is dead. Just remember I told you so as more of you drop out of watching a pathetic series that has lost its way.
Author's note: First, I can tell you first hand that the economy has effected NASCAR. I have survived five layoffs and work only 36-hour weeks and I know there are a lot of NASCAR fans out there like me going through similar situations.
I tried to make this all rhyme, think I did a freakin' good job of it but here's what I could not add in. Damn I still miss North Wilkesboro, along with the Rock and it's a sin that they took a race away from Darlington. I hate all the cookie cutter tracks, too bad they didn't just build short tracks.
It sucks that a team can race one weekend as a Dodge, the next a Chevrolet by making three changes to the car and changing the decals.
This one also was inspired by David Caraviello's piece on nascar.com titled, "For Johnson, it's down to a single-race chase."