User-agent: * Allow: / CH on Track: September 2010


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Did NASCAR affect race to the chase? Just wondering?

It is very interesting that Clint Bowyer's car failed inspection after his win at New Hampshire, the first race of the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship. It is even more interesting that reports indicated NASCAR had a problem the previous week, but did nothing about it.

So, is it NASCAR that kept Ryan Newman out of the chase? Given NASCAR's history and apparent dislike for Newman, I wouldn't be at all surprised.

Had Bowyer lost 150 points at Richmond, when according to Steve McCormick at, Bowyer's team "very nearly failed inspection," that would have kept him from that coveted 12th place spot in points. McCormick went on to describe the problem as, "while not exactly the same, it was in the same area of the car."

If Bowyer's penalty of 150 points would have been assessed at Richmond, it would have put Newman into the chase. At the conclusion of the race Bowyer was 142 points ahead of Newman. Biffle moved into the 12th position, 98 points ahead of Newman.

Had NASCAR's arbitrary decision to dock Bowyer 150 points after Richmond, Newman would have been in and Bowyer out. At the very least, this is an interesting development, especially given the lack of transparency in NASCAR's penalty policy.

Any indication of there being a problem with Bowyer's car after it was inspected at Richmond causes me concern.

I have to agree with Dustin Long's comments that The Chase became a sideshow after NASCAR's penalty to Clint Bowyer yesterday. And while Long referred to the potential manipulation of chse contenders through an appeals process that puts all the decision-making into NASCAR's hands.

Long also added, "The fact that NASCAR could not or would not explain the exact nature of the infraction, the fact that NASCAR seems to have in place a selective use of warnings, that officials have a cavalier attitude when it comes to motives (they said Wednesday that they don’t know if the infraction would improve performance nor did they care), that the car passed pre-race inspection is all going to lead some to think the penalty was excessive and arbitrary."

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Race for the Chase for the Championship ends

Finally, Ryan Newman fans can breathe again.

The NASCAR Race for the Chase for the Championship and all the associated drama is over. That's OK. Ryan did well, finishing just a few points behind the top 12. Had better luck prevailed, he may have been inside the cut-off rather than just outside.
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Perhaps hindsight will give 20/20 vision to Newman's critics. Maybe they will get it now -- why Ryan was so ticked off at Joey Logano. Had it not been for the incident at Michigan where Newman had been running in the top 10, perhaps the entire outcome of his season would have had a different result as well. Ryan could have squeaked past Clint Bowyer in the points. We will never know, thanks to the incident with Logano. It is not far-fetched to believe that it cost Ryan a chase berth.

It no longer matters, however, since as they say; it is, what it is.

While those guys get all dressed in their suits and their wives spend a fortune on gowns for the big awards dinner--all uncomfortable and having to make small talk, Ryan and Krissie will be sitting in the comfort of their home, playing with their new baby, enjoying all that the good life has to offer. I think when that time comes, Ryan will be much happier at home than the other 12 of his com padres in Las Vegas.

With the chase pressure off, the remainder of the season can be used to figure it all out.

For us fans, we just have to tune out the commentators, but then we are used to doing that. Ryan obviously isn't the golden boy when it comes to broadcast coverage. We fans will hardly notice all the fawning they do over the top 12 drivers. But that doesn't mean that the 13th among them can't rally from just behind the line to win races. I can't wait for Ryan to win a post-chase race. It will force those broadcasters to have to talk about him. Perhaps they will even get it--that being oh-so-close, isn't so bad.

Monday, September 6, 2010 saved the day - Fun, Easy Fast Live VideoI have long proclaimed my unbridled affection for the Internet, but never more than this weekend when the Dish Network satellite receiver died. 

Thank goodness for the capability to watch this weekend's NASCAR races on the trusty laptop computer, on Finding the race broadcast live and free online kept me from being really cranky.

I was even able to maintain two open windows, one with the broadcast and the other with NASCAR's race day scanner. It wasn't much different than how I normally watch a race. Though it wasn't HD quality, it was certainly acceptable. is an awesome service that provides a plethora of streaming video content to users. Thank you for allowing me to enjoy Saturday and Sunday's races.

Racing at Atlanta promised to be exciting

I was so looking forward to the racing at Atlanta Motor Speedway. My favorite driver, Ryan Newman was to run in the Nationwide race on Saturday and the Sprint Cup race on Sunday. 

For Sunday, he had the potential to win the record for number of pole positions there. He came really close to doing that too, had it not been for an early qualifying draw, which is generally a disadvantage. Newman was third to qualify. He was edged out by Denny Hamlin who was the 30th driver to go out onto the track. Maybe next season, Ryan. 

Measurement on the excitement scale was high. With the regular season winding down, the racing promised to be pretty edgy. It was! With Newman eyeing the final chase spot--in contention with Mark Martin, Jaimie McMurray, and Clint Bowyer, I just didn't want to miss any of the racing action.

A hint of trouble

As the weekend approached, and I readied for all the race day coverage, it turned out that Friday night was the last day to access television. This was particularly troubling since the Dish Network system had just been upgraded a couple of weeks ago. It was so exciting to have the new HD programming, complete with new dish and receiver. My excitement was short-lived however.

Friday night there was a little glitch. All of a sudden the screen went blank. There was no satellite signal. I was hoping the thing didn't fall out of orbit or something. My husband employed his favorite technological troubleshooting technique--turning the receiver off and then back on again. That seemed to work fine. Such was not the case Saturday morning when we awoke to a blackened screen that would not return. It remains that way, on this Monday morning. 

We called Dish Network who sent a technician out that morning. 

What great service I thought as he checked out all the things it could be. Trouble is, the problem was in the receiver--a brand new, out-of-the-box receiver. He had to order a new one. Since this was Saturday, that meant--maybe--getting a new receiver shipped here on Sunday. I didn't have high hopes for that actually happening. But the tech guy was great. He gave us his number and told us to call the minute the receiver arrived. 

Just as I had thought, there was no delivery, but I did call him anyway. He said he would check on delivery and let me know. Since this is the Labor Day weekend, I'm not too hopeful about hearing from him today either. Thank goodness I don't mind hanging around the house during the last official weekend of summer.
No, I really don't. This is Arkansas. We are going to have lots of nice temperate days for outdoor activity. We would probably stay home anyway, since this is a tourist area. This is the last hurrah for all those northerners who aren't as fortunate as us. Besides, I was able to get my race fix, so just as long as we get the thing fixed before the next race, life is good.