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Massa

2013 Sprint Cup, Nationwide, And Camping World Truck Series

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Jennifer Jo Cobb owns a van, which she races in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

Her ex-boyfriend and ex-team employee, Dave Novak, decided to repossess that van. Denise Harmon Mixon, the sister of another of Cobb's former love interests, Mike Harmon, was using the repossessed van to store "medication." Mixon was previously suspended from NASCAR for failing a "medication" test. The crew chief for Eddie Sharp Racing combined with Cobb's crew to try to re-repossess the van and ended up damaging it and a garage door. The van was returned to Cobb, who finished 35th in it last night, contesting a race I could not watch because I do not have the appropriate channel for doing so.

Why Patrick and Stenhouse is somehow a more compelling story than this transcends my capacity to understand.

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Part of me thinks, "wow, these drivers want it so badly they're willing to literally risk death to throw the block." Most of me thinks, "why?"

I hope nothing serious happened as a result of that. That's as sickening as it gets in racing.

It's an undeniable improvement to see how safe these cars are in impact, but it's the safeness that allows drivers to feel secure doing really stupid things on the final lap of these races and causing wrecks just like that. Unfortunately, not everyone in the facility assumes risk, and the fence between them and the drivers can't stop everything.

It won't be the last time a non-participant gets hurt at an auto race, and it's far from the first. IndyCar waffled on a rethink of catchfences when Wheldon died, and were in no position to implement any thoughts they might have had. NASCAR controls American auto racing and if there's something that can be done to improve the fencing, I know they will. At least there's that...

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ESPN confirms fifteen spectators were transported to area hospitals. One with head trauma.

One of the wheels (not just a tire) flew into the stands, and other debris went very far (not just the first rows). The wheels are tethered in NASCAR. It appeared it may have gone over the fence after being ripped off by the fence. The engine went through the fence.

It appears the part of the fence was an access gate, which is weaker than an actual catchfence. Really no reason, in my mind, something protecting the fans should be able to open, but that's in my mind, and it's not the important concern right now.

Michael Annett is awake and alert. He was involved in an earlier wreck and taken to the hospital. All drivers in all other wrecks were checked and released.

Drivers admitted to blocking (which is legal in NASCAR) and to going full throttle through the accident. Do not read this as placing blame. That's how things operate in NASCAR and no driver is wrong for practicing standard procedure; the standard procedure just may have to change. Coming to the finish line, a driver stands on the throttle to try to carry enough momentum to make it across the line, and many did (scoring finishes in the top five or ten). That's the thought process, but it was a car going full throttle to try to get through it that tagged Larson and caused his car to elevate. Again, not blame.

Very sad situation.

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What's happened Eric?

We got golf and rugby playing here on our four sports channels (though Superbike World Champs is on later...)

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What's happened Eric?

We got golf and rugby playing here on our four sports channels (though Superbike World Champs is on later...)

There was a multi-car accident coming to the finish line in today's Nationwide race.

The car of Kyle Larson was sent up into the fence, ripping multiple parts of it and sending debris into the grandstand area. The engine of Larson's car also went through the fence, but fortunately landed in the gap between the grandstand and the wall.

The video is at the link. Sickening wreck, but nothing graphic.

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Which one of the idiots in the comments section is you, Eric :P

Not a good way to end your day at the races. But it is a fact of motorsport, that it is dangerous, and you'll never make it 100% safe for driver or spectator. Just look at the big crash that prompted Mercedes to quit Formula 1 back in the 50's that killed 95 people, or whatever it was. And I think at the same Imola race that Senna died in, at the start Nannini (or was it Larinni???) stalled and got hit from behind on the grid with a tyre going flying into the grandstand.

I remember here in NZ I was at a speedway race and a group of midgets crashed with one ending up hanging in the catch fence. Unfortunately, and as Murphy would have it, part of his muffler (from memory) flew off and into the crowd, hitting unbelievelably the drivers wife....she died. You couldn't make this stuff up. This would have been very early 1980's.

We actually had a death in historic racing here too, just this past week in the Formula 5000's. During practise for the Teretonga race in Invercargill, a very nice bloke by the name of Stan Redmond (65yo) was going very fast and came up on another car going slow, a Lola T140 which is a 1968/9 (i think) F5000, so a high wing, cigar shape car. Stan was in a much newer (relatively speaking) Lola T332, with over 600HP under his right foot. Anyway, he hit Eric Haga in the rear (I don't know the specifics of how they touched, but they did), and Stan's car flipped. He ended up landing on his noggin or something as he sustained serious head injuries. He survived a week, induced coma and all that, but succumbed on Thursday just gone. I feel for Eric as he is a nice guy too, and he'll be beyond counsel at the moment.

Anyway...enough of the bad stuff!

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The crash you refer to Craig, is the 1955 Le Mans disaster.

Very sad to read the reports and to see that video. It makes me feel sick to my stomach that people are injured, and I just hope for the best...no fan should ever be injured or worse when attending a race.

But I'm not sure what they can do to prevent stuff like that from happening.

In many ways it reminds me of what happened to Carl Edwards at Talladega (was it 2009?) where he was clipped right at the end of the race and his car made contact with the catch-fencing. I recall at the time being amazed at how no-one was seriously injured that day.

I just hope for the best news possible...

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Fourteen transported off-property. Twelve admitted to Halifax. Two in critical condition. A further fourteen were treated on-site at Daytona.

No changes will be made for tomorrow's race, but the crossover/access gate will be standard fence. This is not a safety change, just a change caused by necessity, though it may actually be safer. Hopefully, we won't have to find out.

Conference over.

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Some of the fan videos show what a perfect shot Larson made on the gate. Such a freak accident. I also agree that the cars being so safe makes the drivers less afraid of the consequences, but you can't take safety away to fix that. That's irresponsible.

As much as I love restrictor plate racing, perhaps some thinking is in order. Every time you put that many cars in the same place three-and four-wide on the last lap, a crash is inevitable. We're just lucky more cars haven't been airborne.

Just imagine if this had happened to Dennis Setzer in the tri oval instead of the turn:

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I agree.

I think the first place to start is a rethink of driving standards. Drivers are less afraid of the consequences, but so too are those at NASCAR. Their marketing has centered on wrecks ever since it became "safe" to crash. They allow blocking, for example, not because they think defense is part of racing, but because they know it increases the chances of a wreck. I'm not really comfortable with that and never enjoyed that part of it.

They don't have to go full-Barnhart, but a blocking rule would help alleviate something. The fact Regan Smith can say he'd do the same thing "tomorrow" (which is now today) only emphasizes the need to reassess driving standards, I think.

But they won't and I'll still watch this afternoon, so I'm as much a part of the problem as anyone else is.

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Other thoughts:

I preferred the tamer racing, but would have liked to have seen more at the end. It's a tough balance. I think the low line was really hurt by having Keselowski's damaged car at the front; when Keselowski was holding up the high line, the low line could keep up. Just how it goes. I also Earnhardt Biffled a bit. He and Martin could have tried one more move on Johnson, I thought, and I don't think they really would have risked much. I guess it's hard to set up in the corner, though, and maybe Earnhardt didn't want to lure Johnson into a block and take a teammate out.

I also think you would have seen more action at the end had Kenseth and Busch survived. The Toyotas looked like they could make things happen on the bottom better than others (I recall Kenseth and Hamlin assuming the lead that way). I honestly thought that Hamlin and Bowyer would go somewhere, but they had no room to do it behind Keselowski and with Biffle high. Soon after, Bowyer lost Hamlin and they were stuck.

It wasn't a bad race by any means, and it's nice to have a Daytona 500 without a GWC and without cars upside down and on fire. I'm just not sure these guys have figured out the right way to race at the end. You had two extremes this weekend, one in NNS and one in Cup. How you get between those two is beyond my reach.

We'll see how the new bodies do at Phoenix and Las Vegas in the coming weeks, I guess. I got the impression that the biggest impact they would have is at Daytona and Talladega because they really split the tandems up, while the racing might not change so much elsewhere. I also think that the Fords will be more competitive on the other tracks, based on testing times outside of Daytona. They never seemed to have anything here.

I think it's demeaning to women to act shocked that a woman can finish eighth in auto race. FOX crossed the line between celebrating the accomplishments of a female driver and turning it into a novelty. Inadvertently, it makes FOX seem like they're treating gender as a disability of some kind, and while I won't deny that there are certain challenges a woman might face in auto racing, I also think it's opened as many doors as it has closed. I'm not a fan of how her storyline was covered and, as a consequence, how the race was covered, because the race, to them, was as much her journey as it was anything else. Part of equality, to me, is not treating every little thing as a big deal. That takes it in the opposite direction, and brings it around full circle, to imply that our expectations for her are zero because she is a woman, and that anything she does right is impressive because she is a woman, and that anything she does wrong is justified because she is a woman. That puts women in a different category from men, and that's not equality, which seemed to be part of the narrative in Joy's opening comments about "what other sport allows men and women to compete together?" To that question, I answer that the mid-2000s version of the game show Chain Reaction was always men versus women, and I find that to be as good a sport as any.

I would have liked more sunshine, more overtaking, and more information (how did Kyle Busch get to P4 after being P20 coming into the pit stop? I assume no/two tires. It didn't matter, but had he won, they would have really gaffed on ignoring it. Likewise, when they went to commercial, Labonte ducked out of line from P6 and never recovered. Did he pit? And if he did pit, was it just horrible strategy, or did something necessitate that stop? I realize they had "the narrative," but part of the reason I think NASCAR loses viewers is that it's not very rewarding to support a driver/team. In a traditional sport like football, you see your team, and you see all your favorite players. It's inevitable, and most of them will be involved in something exciting, whether it's a scoring opportunity or big defensive play. In NASCAR, you don't get that; sometimes, you don't even see your guy out there. A game like hockey inherently lends itself to having a whole without crushing the individual. A player can have a record-breaking season, and his team can still miss the playoffs. You take NASCAR and it doesn't work like that. The wholes they create are at the expense of anything else going on).

Despite that, I'm not disappointed. Not particularly moved, but not disappointed. It was an average race.

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I enjoyed it.

Wasn't a classic, and wasn't as exciting as I thought it'd be either. It did get rather dull just seeing the entire pack in one big long line with no-one really trying to make much happen. Why was that? Was it just more difficult to do, or was it that drivers didn't want to risk anything too early in the race? I saw a tweet from someone who said that this was the first Daytona 500 they'd ever watched - and that really, they should only have bothered with the last 20 laps. But perhaps that has it how it has been for a long time?

The Danica thing did get irritating. I was actually glad that she didn't win, just because I don't think I could have taken any more Danica-mania. It is one thing to applaud her performance and reflect on how inexperienced she is, and another to bring her gender into it, and on the whole, the focus seemed to be more on the latter than the former.

I think the end would have been a lot more exciting if there hadn't been that last caution. Would've loved to have seen how that played out to the end under green, but that's the way it goes sometimes.

It was fun cheering Bowyer on and seeing him towards the front for so long. Was worried after Kenseth, Busch and Truex all had engine issues, but glad he made it to the end. I'll definitely be cheering for him again this year. Safe to say I'm not a fan of Biffle though. Does he ever risk anything? It seems to me that this is twice in two years he has been near the front at Daytona and doesn't make anything happen, or even attempt to make something look like it'll happen.

Enjoyed following this week though. I watched both duels, a bit of the truck and Nationwide race and pretty much all the 500. Hopefully I'll be able to do this a lot more often this year too. I like what I see, and I'm already looking forward to seeing if these new cars make a difference to the racing next weekend.

Edited by JHS18

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I enjoyed it, too. I wanted fewer cautions, fewer wrecks, and no GWC. I got exactly what I asked for. They eliminated tandem drafting. To be honest, I prefer having Cup and NNS put on a different kind of show; I watched 800 miles of racing this weekend and saw two totally different products. I think that's a good thing, though both could use some tweaking.

I think the single-file came from a few factors. Part of it's definitely the risk, part of it's the difficulty, and part of it's the tire wear. I saw passes on the inside today, so they aren't impossible.

If you look at the past few Daytona 500s, you only needed to see the final stint because nothing that happened earlier mattered. Now, everything that happens early does matter; it's just less happening. I like that trade. I want the race to build off of itself and have some continuity. Unfortunately, FOX didn't want to cover anyone else's race.

RE: Danica. If you want to talk about an accomplishment, she's now led laps at both the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500. That's a special accomplishment and one I'm willing to appreciate. The rest is, at best, a concession of sexism and, at worst, sexism itself.

I agree. The racing was working better with Keselowski up top holding everyone back as opposed to Keselowski on the bottom holding everyone back. Whatever; I'm still satisfied.

Biffle's getting a reputation for that. I guess the only excuse this year is that he really wasn't going to get close enough to Johnson, who could maintain a gap. I truly believe the Fords had a very weak package for Daytona.

Anyway, glad you enjoyed it. I like the new cars and I'm excited about this season. I'd like to see some of my guys (Labonte, Mears) have good runs, some of the Toyota guys (Kenseth, Bowyer, Truex) contend for the title, and some of the most exciting guys (Busch, Keselowski, Stewart) stay at the front. I think that would make for a great year.

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Daytona 500 statistical analysis:

Danica Patrick has finished 8th in the Indianapolis 500 (twice) and in the Daytona 500. This makes her the first driver to finish 8th in a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race since Kevin Harvick last November.

The last time a driver finished 8th in the Daytona 500 was February 2012, when Carl Edwards did so. At the conclusion of that race, Bobby Labonte found himself 14th in Sprint Cup points, where he finds himself again after the conclusion of this race. Bobby Labonte drove car #14 in his Sprint Cup debut; Tony Stewart, the team owner for Danica Patrick, now uses that number. Labonte has been ranked 14th following 19 of his 691 Sprint Cup races, making him someone who sometimes exceeds the expectations most of us have for a 67-year-old driver who has phoned it in every year since 2004.

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Thanks. I didn't know that. It was strange, because I thought one of the big deals about this new car would be that it was easier to run in a pack at a track like this. They seemed to manage it alright in the testing a few weeks ago, but more often than not didn't this week. Still, there was enough to keep me entertained.

I thought Harvick would win it after how strong he'd been all week, so when he and Stewart got eliminated in that earlier wreck, that was quite a surprise. Then Kenseth looked like he'd be strong enough to win before he had his engine issues, Busch did and Truex did...it was a shame for him really, after how strong he'd been running. Strange as well, seemed to be a bit of a Toyota meltdown going on. Have to admit that until the penultimate restart, I hadn't really paid much attention to Johnson all that much. But I guess that's how you win this race, by staying out of trouble. Kinda amusing too to say he got taken out one lap one last year, and wins it this year.

I was impressed with Keselowski too. To hold on to the lead for as long as he did in what was a clearly wounded car...respect.

Anyway, hopefully I'll get to see more races this year. Probably won't see them all, given time differences and the races that are on really late, but I'll definitely try. :P

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Nationwide driver Jeremy Clements has been suspended indefinitely from NASCAR for making an "intolerable and insensitive remark."

I have no idea what remark it was. It had to be public...yet no one recalls Jeremy Clements ever speaking...

I also wonder how an indefinite suspension for this ends. The only other indefinite suspensions they issue are for drugs; when you complete Road to Recovery, you can come back. Does NASCAR offer sensitivity training? Do you they could give some to Darrell Waltrip, who can't seem to speak about female drivers without demeaning them?

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Turns out he used the n-word in a way that I, being from this part of the country, don't even understand.

NNS is Saturday at 4:30 PM UTC -5 (21:30 UTC).

Cup is Sunday at 3:00 PM UTC -5 (20:00 UTC).

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Neuropsychopharmacology, in fact. Violates NASCAR's two-syllable rule. Trying to keep character count down for the 18-34s while also curbing word complexity for the 55-and-ups.

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Danica Patrick...pffft....

Russia is winning the female drivers' race, my americansky kammerads. Inesa Tuskanova, 24 y.o. Rally Driver...

post-1794-0-75663300-1362251899_thumb.jp

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