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Old 06-13-2008, 07:44 PM   #1
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Default NASCAR tells drivers to shut up and drive

BROOKLYN, Mich. (AP) - NASCAR is tired of hearing the negative message some of the stock car sport's driving stars have been sending to fans lately.

Too many complaints about the new generation car, bumpy race tracks and numerous other things, and not enough positive reinforcement for fans.

NASCAR president Mike Helton held a "mandatory" meeting Friday morning for drivers and the team owners who already were on hand at Michigan International Speedway.
Things apparently reached a critical mass last week at Pocono, where it appeared nobody was happy about the rough track or the so-called "Car of Tomorrow" that is still being developed, or the intense heat that had many drivers near exhaustion after a 500-mile race most of them believe should be no longer than 400 miles.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. had his own thoughts about what he heard Friday morning.
"My interpretation was the drivers should be thankful for the position they're in and should be more positive about where this car is going to be in a year or two," he said.
Junior acknowledged he has been one of the most outspoken drivers about the problems with the new car.
"I was pretty critical," he said. "Overly critical at times. The only reason drivers are like that is we feel like our best avenue is through the media because it's very effective.
"I try to talk to Mr. Helton once a month on the telephone if I have any comments or input to give to him. I've always had an open door. He's always been great to me."
Earnhardt said the public is very interested in when the new car is going to be fixed and how NASCAR is going to get it done. But he noted it isn't always possible for them to get that information.
"A lot of companies are not eager to give that information out until it's done and finished," Earnhardt said. "I see NASCAR with the same attitude. I think they do a lot of work behind the scenes and they probably agree with us more than we tend to believe. "They understand that the car is new and it's going to evolve and maybe three years from now we'll look back at today: 'Man, can you believe that is the way we did it?' They're doing more than we give them credit for and us drivers should do less complaining."


In memory of my brother Michael, who gave me my love of sports. I will miss you!
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Old 06-13-2008, 07:59 PM   #2
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Default Re: NASCAR tells drivers to shut up and drive

They are complaining way too much now.
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