Outta Sight

Howdy Y’all… and a happy 2002 to each and ever’one of ya.

In the past coupla weeks, with no racin’ on the weekends, I been spendin’ my time in thought.

I know, I know… that’s pretty dern scary and all, but I figured – even if I ain’t never gonna be no Alfred Eyenstine - I might as well give it a try sometime.

What I been thinkin’ about is all that might happen this year in racin’. I come up with a whole mess of stuff that might happen, but – as always – I didn’t wanna be like every other dern writer in the world and give y’all predictions of what is gonna happen.

So, instead of tellin’ ya the typical - and incredibly enlightnin’ - stuff like Jeff Gordon is gonna be good, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is gonna be excitin’ and safety just might be somethin’ that’s talked about a good bit in 2002, I reckon I’ll head the other direction and tell ya stuff that ain’t gonna happen.

I reckon – since this moves in the opposite direction of ever’body else’s new year stories – I’ll call these the annual Alan Kulwicki Memorial predictions. Here goes…

In 2002, You Ain’t Gonna See…

*Kyle Busch - He’s more talented than a whole bunch of drivers you will see, but as long as Winston is stamped all over everything, young guys like him won’t get to race cuz law suits might be a plenty… (and we’ll all be told it’s cuz of safety).

*Racin’ on FX - Heck, we couldn’t find it last year, what makes ya think we’ll find it this year?

*Mark Martin or Terry Labonte – Heck, we couldn’t find’m last year, what makes ya think we’ll find’m this year?

*Racin’ on Thanksgivin’ – Nope, this time around, if some races get postponed, NASCAR is thinkin’ a Christmas Day special in Calgary and a New Year’s Eve night event in Stockholm would be most fair to the teams. After all, holidays shmolidays, and Atlanta was chilly a few times, too.

*The word “fix” anywhere near Dale Jr.’s name – Nope, he’s gonna win at Daytona by leading almost the entire race (several car lengths ahead with no draft help), and then - after a horrible pit stop - pass 10 cars (while completely out of the draft) in less than one straightaway, and ever’ person will finally know it had nothin’ to do with NASCAR not noticin’ his car was oh so slightly better than any that ever run a plate race in history. We all know the other teams would never let it happen anyway, cuz they all get to inspect his car before and after the race… don’t they?

*Kyle Petty quit – How much love does a man have to have for what he does to go through ever’thing this man has gone through and still get out there day after day doin’ ever’thing he can to gain a tenth of a second? Take notice of great folks when ya have the chance folks… take notice.

*The closing of Bristol, Dover, New Hampshire, Martinsville and Richmond for races at new 1.5-mile tri-ovals in San Francisco, New York, New Orleans, Seattle and Boston – ISC/NASCAR can’t move this fast, we’re still a year or two off from all that happenin’.

*The most popular driver in racin’ win the most popular driver in racin’ award – Fer Bill Elliott to win that many times in a row (despite bein’ soooo not close to Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, Rusty Wallace and others) makes ya gotta figure some old folks down in Florida is handlin’ more than presidential ballots. He’ll be back on top again this year… I hear it’s the same old folks countin’.

*Allen Beastwick or Bill Weeber’s hair get messed up – What ya reckon they use, Bondo on them hairdos?

*Goodyear makin’ a poor tire – Heck, every ripped-to-shreds piece of rubber we seen in a few years has been the fault of the drivers and teams, so I reckon that ain’t gonna change - up to 10 times a week – this time around.

*NASCAR admittin’ this is the final season fer the truck series – It was a fun run while it lasted, but so were NASCAR ThunderStores, Cafes, SpeedParks, Silicon Speedways, etc. It’s time to finish out the closin’ and sellin’ off of this stuff and get back to focusin’ on what got ya here… big-time racin’.

*Me gettin’ an invitation to the Winston Cup Banquet – Reckon it’s cuz they know I ain’t got no tux?

*Larry McReynolds sayin’ anything bad about Petty Racin’ – How we supposed to get honest analysis when the dern announcers work fer teams?

*Two Cup events at Texas – Just makes way too much sense for it to ever happen.

*Another NASCAR driver’s death – I don’t know if I can take another one, so I’m askin’ y’all to only uncross them fingers this season when you’re holdin’ three of’m up in the air on the third lap.

I’ll talk at y’all next week… I reckon.

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