I freely admit, because my driver is joining the team next year, that I hope that the Rick Hendrick Motorsports strangle hold on the Nextel Cup series continues into next year. Those of us who have watched the sport for a long time know that teams achieve a level that no one else can match, and what I'm wondering is whether or not it's good for racing. Back in the 1960's, Petty dominated. Oh, yeah, in the 1970's Petty pretty much dominated too. In the 1980's, it was people like Earnhardt and Waltrip that seemed to be on top of the heap. There's a lot of others as well, such as Elliot, Wallace, etc. but I'm going for dynasties here. In the 1990's, Jeff Gordon was just ridiculous with his winning percentage.
In 2007, it appears we have another dynasty on the loose, and it's name is Hendrick. Can Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon possibly be more dominant than they are now?
Nascar has had an unending quest for parity in the sport for decades now, and I'm pretty sure there are some folks in the big office in Daytona Beach right now crunching numbers, reading statistics, and trying to figure out the next new bombshell that Nascar will drop on us, the fans, the people that ultimately finance the entire sport. Fans finance the sport, you might ask? Of course we do!
Sponsors such as Dupont, Lowes, Home Depot, Budweiser, and about a few hundred others actually write the checks to the teams. But where does that money come from? Uh, well, from us, folks. We support the sponsors, we buy beer, building materials, paint, and all kinds of stuff. When you think about it, We, the Fans, really do pay for what we're watching every Sunday. How happy are you with the quality of racing lately?
Compared to years gone by, I'm not that happy. Nascar has their fingers poked into too many pies these days. I'm still not totally sold on the Chase. I'm not totally sold on the huge penalties in points that some teams take, and other's don't. Nascar is the ruling body over the sport, but they literally beat themselves to pieces when they are not consistent with how and who they apply the rules to.
What it comes down to is that I feel that the more control that Nascar exercises over the actual racing part of the sport, the more boring it is. If I were watching drag racing, it would be totally boring to watch cars tie every single time they ran against each other. Nascar seems to be trying to push literally a 43 car tie at the line every week.
Let's even the playing field, but let's give credit to the guys that think smarter and work smarter. Hendrick Motorsports is the team that seems to be ahead by head and shoulders right now. Once upon a time it was Roush, then it was DEI, at least at restrictor plate tracks, then it was Richard Childress, then it was blah, blah, blah, going back to Raymond Parks in the early 1950's.
If people work smarter, and back it up on the track, They deserve to win. This is Rick Hendrick's year, and he's the best of the best.
Is it fair? Probably not. Is it right, I say yes. Let them race, and Nascar, just quit tinkering with the system. I for one really don't want to see 43 identically prepared cars on the track every week. If you prepare properly, and if you have the sense to get the right driver, then you ought to be rewarded by getting some wins and some championships. Rick Hendrick has figured out the system, and he's the best there is right now.