Friday, June 24, 2005

More NASCAR: On Sonoma

I'm not sure what's particularly "old school" about dissing road courses in NASCAR, unless it's that in the olden days the road races were pretty boring. But ever since Steve Park's upset victory at Watkins Glen in 2000, the road course races have been among the most exciting Cup events NASCAR has put on. In general, the NASCAR regulars have gotten a lot better at running these tracks, so there's at least some chance someone named Gordon won't win.

Why I like the road races:

(1) They don't last as long as the oval track races. This means that even a boring road race is, minute by minute, more exciting than a boring oval race.

(2) I like having a bunch of road course "experts" show up--and then get smacked down by Tony Stewart and Jeff Gordon.

(3) There are a lot more opportunities for drivers--usually someone like Robby Gordon or Boris Said--to attempt truly insane moves. Generally, the highlight from a road race is something like an amazing three-at-a-time pass, whereas the highlight from an oval race is almost always a wreck.

Incidentally, I think they should add another road race to the NASCAR schedule, but not before they scrap this ridiculous "Chase for the Cup" format. And that might happen sooner than I thought it would...

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