NASCAR: Rubbing Is Racing, As Long As You Rub The Right Car, Confused?

al asifyouknowSenior Analyst ISeptember 23, 2009

LONG POND, PA - JUNE 11:  Kasey Kahne, driver of the #9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge, and Ryan Newman, driver of the #12 Alltel Dodge, rub fenders as they head down the home straight during the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Pocono 500 at the Pocono Raceway on June 11, 2006 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

I’m little confused with that rubbing is racing concept, lets analyze it a bit.

The last three years I’ve embarked in a journey to become a knowledgeable NASCAR fan, I’m trying to understand the culture of it and it’s idiosyncrasies.

I know about the engine builders, I always find out what chassis the team is running and where it was previously run, probably useless information for most fans, but I enjoy reading about it.

There is something I find confusing, stay with me on this, let me explain.

The DVR is a wonderful tool, I record just about every program that’s available on cable, and of course there’s always video clips on hundreds of web sites.

All this media gave an opportunity to see, and hear commentary of many NASCAR racing events.

Just about every time there was a bump and pass, or a punt and pass, the words ”well, that’s just racing folks, you know rubbing is racing” were broadcaster loud and clear, almost with a feeling of pride by the announcers.

I also noticed that most fans were on board with the rubbing is racing concept, or I thought they were.

After a few hours of watching and listening to old and not so old clips, something became very apparent to me, the great concept of “rubbing is racing” has a disclaimer, you know like the ones you may see written on some of the medicines you take.

I was surprised to see the acceptance of this concept is only afforded to some drivers, here are some examples, the Intimidator did lots of rubbing and he didn’t care who he did it to, but he is still the greatest star in the sport, but when Kyle Busch does the same, he’s a bum.


There are many examples like that, too many to mention, but if you’re a fan, I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.

I see some of the broadcaster and retired drivers always defend the concept, but again, it all depends who is involved in it.

I’ve seen Earnhardt Jr. being punted, Tony being lifted, JJ’s door banging, or the broadcasters darling "The Biffer" being bounced around, but in those cases, the concept of “rubbing is racing” changed to, “that was just terrible, you just can’t move someone out of the way like that, it puts other drivers in danger.”

Honest a god! those are actual quotes!

Woo Nelly! I just seen that same move by a top driver or a well liked driver, and the commentary was "that’s just awesome racing folks, that’s just good old fashion short track racing” and they all have a good laugh and a wink wink.

So please tell me Is rubbing part of racing or not?

This is why I’m confused, aren’t you?

So let me ask some of you veteran NASCAR fans some questions.

How does a driver earn the right to rub while racing and not be rubbed? That sounds kinky, but I can’t think of another way to ask the question.

Is there a private “I rub you, you don’t rub me” club?

Who decides who can be a rubber and who can only be the rubee? Rubee, is that real word? I don’t care, its late and I’m not looking it up, so for you grammar Dudley -do rights, live with it.

Finally! Can you please set me straight, is rubbing really racing? Or is it just the privilege of the chosen ones?

Is all so confusing, please help me with your comments.


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