Gas 'N' Go: Changing Hall of Fame Process

NASCAR Hall of Fame

Changes are coming for the NASCAR Hall of Fame in its process of selecting inductees. (Photo: Getty Images)

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The pits are open again and, MotorRacingNetwork.com's Pete Pistone and Dustin Long each answer this week's featured question in "Gas 'N' Go."

NASCAR will announce changes to the Hall of Fame process soon. What's a change that should be considered?

MRN Staff

Answer

Pete Pistone
Pete Pistone

Let me start by saying I'm really not a fan of changing anything so soon in this process. I'd like the Hall of Fame to have a settling in period and stay the course of the criteria and rules that, for better or worse, were set when it opened. I've never like having a fan vote in this process and now the idea to add the reigning Sprint Cup champion to each year's voting panel strikes me as more of a PR move than anything. My belief is that the members of the voting committee are all qualified and dedicated individuals charged with making an educated and informed decision to fill the Hall. Overall they've done a good job since the process started.

But perhaps it's time to add a Veteran's Committee to the proceedings so pioneers like Red Byron and Raymond Parks, for example, don't continually get overlooked. Their path, without a Veteran's Committee, will become increasingly more difficult as the years go by. Quite frankly, under the current rules, the ship has more than likely sailed on the pair. Recognizing and honoring more pioneers is needed and the time has come for a HOF Veteran's Committee.

Dustin Long
Dustin Long

First, let me say I’m a Hall of Fame voter. There’s a concern among some in the sport that the Hall of Fame will soon run out of viable candidates if five are inducted annually. One way to alleviate that issue would be to require a candidate to be on at least 60 percent of the ballots to be inducted. While you could still have five people inducted, most likely, you’ll see one to three inducted most years. Currently, the top five vote-getters make the next class regardless of how many ballots they’re on. 

An issue with this could be what happened with the 2013 Class. Herb Thomas and Leonard Wood led the way with each listed on 57 percent of the ballots. Only two members of the 2014 Class topped the 60 percent mark with Tim Flock on 76 percent of the ballots and Maurice Petty on 67 percent of the ballots. 

One advantage of this system is that with fewer people likely inducted, it would make it easier to add someone through a Veteran’s Committee.

 

Related Topics:

NASCAR Sprint Cup, NASCAR

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