Snowballs

    It's crunch time as we roll into Christmas week. Hard to believe that the holidays are in full swing and it's already been a month since we shut things down at Homestead. It won't be long before we're back at it when the calendar turns to February and everyone returns to Daytona so enjoy the "down" time and embrace the opportunity to share your life with loved ones.

    The news has slowed down some but there are a few items of interest:

  • Danica Patrick completed her ARCA test and transition to stock car racing last weekend in Daytona and believe it or not the earth did not stop spinning. Patrick's foray into full fendered competition went off without a hitch and although was nothing spectacular, turned out to be a solid three days learning her craft. She'll most likely find another opportunity to test before she tries her hand in full-fledged competition at the ARCA opener on February 6th.

  • Whether you like Patrick or not if you're a race fan be happy that our sport is in the public eye at a time of the year when there is usually nothing to talk about. Motorsports made its way into a lot of newspapers as well as television and radio reports when in the past the sports world was purely football crazy with a dash of basketball and hockey thrown into the mix. Patrick's move has brought attention to racing which is always a good thing.

  • Interesting research by USA Today to point out crashes were actually down in NASCAR Sprint Cup competition this year. Despite the introduction of double file restarts, which spiced things up tremendously but did seem to be the catalyst for more incidents, there were 195 crashes and spins during NASCAR's 36-race season (5.4 per race) compared to 211 (5.9) last year - an 8.5% drop and the lowest since 2002 (5.2).

  • Our eyes are always on the short track scene, which got some good news a few weeks ago with Bobby Hamilton Jr.'s purchase of Tennessee's Highland Rim Speedway. That should give a shot in the arm to the local scene around the Nashville area, which will lose Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway in 2010. Also it appears more series and tracks are finally getting the message and putting together common rules packages, including tires, to allow competitors the chance to race at more than one speedway. Unfortunately others have the "me" mentality and refuse to create any kind of common rules template with one late model series now dictating the use of a car that can only be run in its 10 race schedule. Apparently the word of an economic crisis has not reached this particular group's mail box. Many other short tracks have also created a rules island, mostly in the world of asphalt stock car racing which continues to suffer from short fields while the dirt late model side of the coin flourishes because so many tracks and sanctioning bodies have adopted the same standards. Here's a holiday wish that things are much better for the short track industry in 2010.

    From all of us at RacingOne and personally from my family to yours, best wishes for a Merry Christmas and happy holiday season!

Related Topics:

NASCAR Sprint Cup, 2009

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