That’s kind of all over the place, but here goes:
Isn’t it interesting that the last 5 cup winners are NOT from the Southeast? That was, of course, what my list of new drivers was comprised of. There are still plenty of drivers from the SE racing in NASCAR, but they haven’t won anything since 1999 when Jarrett won (Bobby Labonte is from Texas, which is more SW). You have to go back to ’94 for the next driver from the SE to win, and they were all from the Southeast before that. That makes a great case for my argument right there. It’s not a huge stretch to think that a driver from the SE of the US may never win again, considering the increasing influx of talent from the rest of the Country, not to mention the World. In fact, in keeping with my theory, in 20 years, there may not be any drivers from the Southeast US even driving in Cup.
Technology in NASCAR runs counter to other racing series. For example, there would be no way the old time drivers would be able to run a restrictor plate race without power steering. It’s hard enough to keep the cars running inches apart at 190 from hitting each other WITH power steering.
The COT is an extremely difficult car to drive. Ricky Craven again:
The open wheel guys struggle with it.
"The car was totally unsophisticated then and still is, but it's supposed to be," Wheeler says. "It's made to entertain fans, not engineers ... with people realizing that racing has got to be entertaining."
Allmendinger says he wasn't derided by his Champ Car peers for making the move.
"They all said if you get the opportunity to go and don't, you're an idiot," he says. "There may not be as much technology, but they're the hardest frickin' cars I've ever driven in my life. They're difficult beasts to hang onto."
As for the NBA thing, 50% of the league will be foreign by 2010. And it’s not just 7 footers. The international talent pool is just that much deeper then the relatively small US pool. NASCAR will feel the same impact eventually.
NO fighter pilot will ever concede anything to any other pilot. But apples to oranges is perfect. It takes a much different skill set to fly a plane today then it did in 1942. But a stick and rudder man like Chuck Yeager could fly anything in any era. That type of pilot is rare and only comes along once in a generation. He wouldn’t be qualified to fly, today, by the way, since he wasn’t educated enough.
IROC races were relegated to oval tracks for a long time, which isn’t what they were intended to be. THAT was a perfect format for all these guys from different eras and series to compete. IROC was intended to be run on road courses, and I’m quite confident that the group of drivers I picked would dominate the old timers on road courses, especially Gordon and Stewart. Make them all 30 years old, give them all the exact same car, and throw them all on a road course. Of course it’s a hypothetical, but if it could ever happen, I’m confident my prediction would ring true. By the by, Earnhardt Sr. didn’t win a road course until he was in his mid-40’s.