Dale Jarrett Didn’t Get NASCAR’s Memo
Have you ever noticed that when NASCAR makes a big change that most of the NASCAR media quickly falls in line?
This year when NASCAR made the largest rule changes in the history of the sport these changes were sold to fans as “Enhancements.” Not a single article, radio report or television report from the usual cast of characters in this sport mentioned “Rule Changes” which convinced me there must be an email list from NASCAR to all of the important media members. Apparently Dale Jarrett is no longer on that email list because he didn’t get the memo on the proposed rule changes for the Xfinity Series at Indy.
Yesterday NBC Sports broke the story that NASCAR plans to use restrictor plates in an attempt to increase the quality of racing in the Xfinity Series at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Ever since NASCAR moved this race in 2012 from the little track Lucas Oil Raceway Indianapolis to the big track the racing has been horrible. Last year NASCAR did a test of restrictor plates to see if they would work. The NBC Sports story yesterday told NASCAR fans that the restrictor plates will be used this year at Indy and if they work then expect restrictor plates to be used in Cup in 2018. Other tracks such as Pocono or Michigan might also add restrictor plates in the future.
The instant reaction on social media from many media members that cover the sport were along the lines of “They have to try something give it a chance.” But last night on NASCAR America Cup champion Dale Jarrett said, “It’s an awful idea. We tried restrictor plates one time at New Hampshire. Jeff Burton led every lap.”
This was clearly not what NASCAR sent out in their memo! Maybe NASCAR wasn’t aware that DJChamp99@aol.com is no longer an active address. Either that or DJ is walking on the proverbial tight rope and calling NASCAR out on a dumb decision. It has been so long since I have heard dissent among the NASCAR media on any decision made by the sanctioning body that I am not sure how they will act. Is it possible NASCAR will listen and reconsider their decision? Or will a NASCAR Hall of Famer be shunned out of the tribe?
For the record I agree with Dale Jarrett. Many years ago a famous race car driver by the name of Dan Gurney talked about what makes great racing and if anyone should know great racing it is a great driver like Mr. Gurney. He said you need to add horsepower and subtract down force. While NASCAR has been going in the right direction on the down force they have been going the wrong direction on horsepower since the 2014 season. It will be interesting to see what other NASCAR media members didn’t get the memo or realize its OK to be honest to NASCAR fans about everything!