MONTE DUTTON – GUILTY AS CHARGED
It is said that a politician gives people what they want and a statesman gives them what they need. Thankfully, that’s all I’ve got on politics today.
NASCAR is giving fans what they want, but the ones with wants are dwindling. For the sport to regain its hold on hearts and minds, it has to analyze what they need. I don’t think minds bring the fans back to the grandstands. For the people willing to sacrifice their hard-earned money, risk bad weather and high costs, auto racing has to appeal to the hearts.
Fans have to feel as if they know drivers they really don’t.
Fans have to have their senses assaulted by noise, smoke and the intoxicating scent of overheated rubber and lubricants.
Racing has to send chills down their spines. Fans have to divide the battlefield in front of them between heroes and villains of their own choosing.
Racing has to accept the failure of just about everything it has foisted upon its fan base for the past 15 years.
In reading the diminishing literature of the sport, one would think the innovations of that time span have been wildly successful. That is only modestly true among the ones who still show up.
I still show up, and I don’t mean that literally because showing up, for me, involves still actually watching the races on TV. I decided almost seven years ago that I would only show up at the premises when there was money to take me to them. This happened three times in 2017. I did my best. It wasn’t enough. No one has offered to send me back in the four years before and the two years since. I’ve gotten lots of nibbles but caught no fish. I finally quit fishing, though I’m thankful this site and the occasional radio station give me a chance to roar from afar, a lion across the valley.
Among the thoughts you’ve probably read here before: NASCAR pays too much attention to the fans it still has and not enough to the ones it ran off. Rather than adjusting the sport to people who don’t like it, NASCAR must increase the number who like it. The status quo is a losing proposition.
The kids don’t care about cars. Oh, yeah, well, if that doesn’t change, doom awaits.
NASCAR has gone all mathematical. Only the mathematicians know what is going on without television and radio assistance. Watching a race is a little like attending a seminar in which the moderator reads verbatim what is shown on a video screen. The “Who’s on First?” routine of Abbott and Costello would be more entertaining.
I dunno. Third base!
Watch it on YouTube, kids. It can be instructive.
Some will charge me with falling behind the times and misunderstanding the many virtues of a brave new age.
They’re right. The trick is to replace me with people who care.