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Click above for high-res gallery of the 2009 Daytona 500

As we mentioned yesterday, the Autoblog team watches a lot of motorsports, but NASCAR isn't usually one of them. None of us found ourselves in front of the TV for yesterday's running of the Daytona 500, the sport's biggest race and inaugural contest to kick off the season. From what we're told, we didn't miss too much. There were left turns (lots of them), crashes and the race was cut short with 48 laps left to go on account of rain. Who was out front when the rains came? Follow the jump to find out.

  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Keith Urban performs before the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: A general view of the track during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet leads the field at the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Mark Martin, driver of the #5 Kellogg's/Carquest Chevrolet and Martin Truex Jr, driver of the #1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: David Ragan, driver of the #6 UPS Ford races Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Joey Logano, driver of the #20 Home Depot Toyota, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M's Toyota, leads a pack through the tri-oval during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Joey Logano, driver of the #20 Home Depot Toyota, crashes during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Aric Almirola, driver of the #8 Guitar Hero Chevrolet, spins in turn four during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Joey Logano, driver of the #20 Home Depot Toyota sits in the grass after suffering damage, while Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the #77 Mobil 1 Dodge passes by, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe's Chevrolet, runs three wide with Michael Waltrip, driver of the #55 NAPA Toyota, and Jaun Pablo Montoya, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Crew members work to repair the #18 M&M's Toyota, driven by Kyle Busch after suffering damage during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Actor Tom Cruise poses with the pace car in which he will drive during pre-race ceremonies prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: (L-R) Actor Tom Cruise poses with team owner Rick Hendrick next to the car used in the film 'Days of Thunder' on track prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Actor Tom Cruise drives the car used in the film 'Days of Thunder' on track prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Actor Tom Cruise watches the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 from a pit box of the #24 DuPont Chevrolet driven by Jeff Gordon at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DeWalt Ford celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. Kenseth won because NASCAR called the race due to weather. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in the victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

[Source: New York Times | Photos: Getty Images]

The 2009 Daytona 500 was won by none other than Matt Kenseth, the guy who didn't win a race last year and had gone 36 races without standing atop a podium. After the race was called due to rain and Kenseth declared the winner, the Roush Fenway Racing driver joked, "It's going to be really wet out here because I'm crying like a baby." Kenseth actually started the race at the back of the pack because his primary Dewalt-sponsored Ford Fusion was wrecked during qualifying on Thursday.



The race itself was, of course, interrupted by a number of crashes, but they're only talking about one today. It occurred on Lap 124 and was caused by Brian Vickers and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Both drivers were more than a lap down and out of contention at that moment, but their tangling at the bottom of the track caused a mess in front of the entire field that took out three-time Sprint Cup defending champion Jimmy Johnson, Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch, among others. With those three out of the way, winning became a real possibility for many remaining drivers who weren't given a real chance at the outset.

Earnhardt, Jr. had actually already been penalized twice for major errors in the pits, including driving past his pit stall and not stopping his car fully inside the stall. Needless to say, Earnhardt, Jr. didn't have many fans among his peers after the race was over.



Kenseth's win does come at the expense of some hard work put in by Elliot Sadler, who had taken the lead on Lap 122 and held it for 24 laps. Having no idea there were only six laps to go, Kenseth made his move to pass Sadler with a push from Kevin Harvick. Not long after the heavens opened up and a rain-soaked Daytona declared Kenseth the winner instead of Sadler.



Among the normal festivities of Daytona weekend, this year's race did feature one unique element: the presence of one Cole Trickle, a.k.a. actor Tom Cruise. Cruise was on hand to drive the Chevy Camaro Pace Car during ceremonial laps before the race began. The actor even reprised his role by hopping into the actual Chevy Lumina stock car used during the filming of Days of Thunder.

  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Keith Urban performs before the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: A general view of the track during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet leads the field at the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Mark Martin, driver of the #5 Kellogg's/Carquest Chevrolet and Martin Truex Jr, driver of the #1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: David Ragan, driver of the #6 UPS Ford races Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Joey Logano, driver of the #20 Home Depot Toyota, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M's Toyota, leads a pack through the tri-oval during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Joey Logano, driver of the #20 Home Depot Toyota, crashes during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Aric Almirola, driver of the #8 Guitar Hero Chevrolet, spins in turn four during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Joey Logano, driver of the #20 Home Depot Toyota sits in the grass after suffering damage, while Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the #77 Mobil 1 Dodge passes by, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe's Chevrolet, runs three wide with Michael Waltrip, driver of the #55 NAPA Toyota, and Jaun Pablo Montoya, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Crew members work to repair the #18 M&M's Toyota, driven by Kyle Busch after suffering damage during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Actor Tom Cruise poses with the pace car in which he will drive during pre-race ceremonies prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: (L-R) Actor Tom Cruise poses with team owner Rick Hendrick next to the car used in the film 'Days of Thunder' on track prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Actor Tom Cruise drives the car used in the film 'Days of Thunder' on track prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Actor Tom Cruise watches the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 from a pit box of the #24 DuPont Chevrolet driven by Jeff Gordon at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DeWalt Ford celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. Kenseth won because NASCAR called the race due to weather. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
  • DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 15: Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DEWALT Ford, celebrates in the victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2009 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 36 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      The wreck was completely Junior's fault. Vickers blocked as he should have, and Junior retaliated. It's typical of the type of "racing" that Hendrick's teams espouse, and it's ridiculous.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I'd only call it a block if you can move down and cut the car off. In this case, Jr had position on the track, since you could see the back left of Vickers' car clip the right front side of Jr's ride just before Jr corrected back to the right, causing the accident.

        Sad to say that was the most exciting part of the race though. Too much of a yawner, even for a restrictor plate race. Where's Boris and the road races when you need them? ;)
      • 6 Years Ago
      Well they make someone watch Knight Rider. That is much worse a fate than watching a Daytona race.

      ;)
      • 6 Years Ago
      Yeah, that's probably dry weight, so it probably does come very close to 4,000lbs with driver and fluids.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Yes, this was quite a poor ending but rain you can't do anything about. Let's hope auto club doesn't have another 24 hours of California again. I was at the track last year for this and it was not fun.
      • 6 Years Ago
      AWD FTW.
        • 6 Years Ago
        AWD doesn't help you turn or stop. It wouldn't really help the problems that caused this race to end early.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The current state of NASCAR is of a sport in decline and yesterday's Daytona 500 had all the ingredients of a bedtime story complete with the snores.

      First, NASCAR means well when it finally decided to build "safer" cars after sacrificing its Top Dog, Dale Earnhardt, at this very track. But like the clever powers in charge of the Federal Government, the "meaning well" aspect of implementing the Car of Tomorrow (Today's race car) was but a smokescreen for developing the long desired common template - whereby every car is essentially the same save for decals and some suspension tricks.

      NASCAR couldn't figure out how to leave its sport alone and have distinct brands running around the track - meaning, when a Chevrolet or a Ford was superior and winning all the time, it just couldn't allow weaker brands to get trounced - so they implemented nose, spoiler, and tail treatments that took all of the stock out of stock car racing. And when NASCAR couldn't stomach all those different templates (implemented to keep teams like Hendrick from cheating - they are 13 time serial "caught" cheaters during their recent Championship runs), NASCAR used safety as an excuse an implemented the COT and in doing so took the soul out of the sport.

      The just run Daytona 500 was a complete snorefest. The excitement of the event has long been "waiting for the big one" - the wreck that clears the idiots from the field (and a few innocents) and then sets the stage for a dramatic finish usually between two or three racers who actually have some driving skill.

      This year's Daytona 500 had all the excitement of watching a lawn grow but with an added twist that Goodyear cannot make a tire that stays in one piece for more than 25 laps when raced. Evidently if you went 100 mph they'd last 50 laps. Raced at 185 mph and they perish at 25 laps. I suspect this is a way of injecting another round of excitement into a race that is filled with more yawns than true racing skill.

      I forgot to add another insidious and stupid rule by NASCAR implemented a few years ago and reinforced this year with the addition of a double yellow line in place of a single one. Supposedly the fans couldn't figure out that the single yellow line was a no pass zone so the superiors in NASCAR added a second line to ensure that every redneck who sees a double yellow line on a back road knows that that means "no passing". Like that has stopped them from not passing before when confronted with Grandpa DoFlotchy traveling 20 mph on a 45 mph two lane road. NASCAR was so profound with its emphasis this year that it wanted drivers to think of the double yellow line as a "concrete" wall.

      Now I realize that the intent of this yellow line rule is to prevent running the car down on the apron which has different banking characteristics of the rest of the track and if you hit that incorrectly, you cause the "big one". However, in yesterday's race, the yellow line caused the big one when an idiot driver with no apparent talent, Brian Vickers, chose to push another car below the line. Perhaps Brian could have done this to Mark Martin or to Penelope Pitstop and experienced nothing in return, but he did this to a charging Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (who is as milk toast as milk toast except when he just made two screw ups on his own and who was steaming and trying to get to the front before the rains came). Well, Vickers, the Yutz, pushes Earnhardt down and Earnhardt moves up and send the whining little sniveling chump up into the lead pack which took out some talented drivers and the Super Yutz, Kyle Busch - a driver who has the maturity of a five year old and the arrogance of 10 Jeffie Gordons.

      That was the highlight of the race right there sports fans! The NASCAR rule that resulted in the very thing that it was designed to prevent - and it would have gone without saying that had the yellow line rule not been in effect, Dale Junior would have passed the idiot Vickers in the grass and would have not wrecked the field.

      Oh, it rained. The race ended nearly 50 laps short. And ended like the Sopranos. Yeah, "Say What?" was the ending. With no disrespect meant to Matt Kenseth, when he wins a restrictor plate race, you know just how far the sport has sunk. I guess NASCAR figured that at a track with excellent lighting and with two hours of rain and two hours of track drying to do, running the last 48 laps was just too much excitement for us to handle.

      Just don't step over those double yellow lines, fool!
        • 6 Years Ago
        I couldn't agree more with all of your statements but your version of the big wreck is where we differ.

        Jr was pissed at the way his day was going, he made a ton of rookie mistakes and was a lap down, after Vickers blocked him, which he is entirely allowed to do, Jr decided to take a hard right hand turn into Vickers instead of backing off and getting behind Vickers, an took out 8-10 cars in the process.

        Vickers is no saint, he wrecked Jr and Jimmie for the win at Dega a while back, but his blocking was allowable. Jr didn't like it, his day, or his chances, so he took Vickers out.
      • 6 Years Ago
      My thoughts on the Daytona 372:

      1) Jr. was responsible for the wreck and was not penalized only because he is Jr.

      2) NASCAR races in general, but especially restrictor plate races, have become 80% boring and 20% demolition derby.

      3) Has anyone realized that if they had started the race at the old time slot, 1PM EST the race would have been completed long before the rains came?
      • 6 Years Ago
      NASCA=WRECK.
      • 6 Years Ago
      NASCAR are not "American sports car" races, as NASCAR cars are not sports cars, they are stock cars (yeah, the name no longer fits well, but that's what NASCAR calls them and they sure aren't sports cars with those steel wheels on 'em).

      There are still a couple "American sports car" series left, one of which ran at Daytona a few weeks ago for 24 hours. Perhaps the autobloggers watch those series?

      I believe a NASCAR only weighs 3200lbs (plus driver).

      I think ripping on someone for not watching NASCAR is about as stupid as ripping on someone for watching NASCAR. If you like something, you like it. If you don't, you don't. Autobloggers are supposed to watch races they don't enjoy watching?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Hey...

      We are NASCAR and terribly afraid of rain. While all other motorsports continue in rain...we put our umbrellas up in fear we might melt.

      NASCAR = Pansies.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Yeah, since all other race series run 195 mph in the rain.


        If you are an idiot, refrain from posting. I am looking at you BinaryTerror.



        Jr. caused the wreck, the race was called too early, and congrats to Matt for breaking the drought.
        • 6 Years Ago
        DC what is your beef? You disagree with me and start your case by calling me an idiot? You are the one drinking the NASCAR kool aid, but I am not going stoop to your level and call you names. I will rebut your claims with facts.

        The cars running at Daytona 24hrs run almost the complete oval and cut into the infield in two places and they are sport cars, generating massive amounts of downforce, do you know what downforce is? Putting way more mass and sustained heat into rain tires than cup cars ever could. F1 cars generate much more downforce than even sports cars, putting their tires under unbelievably sustained loads in the wet or dry. The sustained heat cup cars generate on a high speed oval track doesn't even come close.

        Then you bring up hydroplaning, they are running on a 31 degree banked oval, the water is going to run off very quickly, making hydroplaning almost impossible add to that 30+ cup cars running rain tires also pumping the rain off.

        You also claim cup car suspensions are tighter that sports cars or F1 cars? You you have no idea what you are talking about, don't you see the way the nose of a cup car dives when they are hard the brakes. You really think a cup car has tighter suspension than a sports car or F1 car? Don't you know how much suspension travel they have to put into those cup cars to handle the bumps at Daytona. And any racing handbook will tell you that a car with more suspension travel will work better in the rain than a car with tight suspension.

        NASCAR could easily get tires from Goodyear that could handle cup cars on an oval in the rain. The NASCAR drivers would have to actually drive, maybe even brake a little before entering corners but at least they could complete races. Maybe NASCAR just doesn't want their so called "premier drivers" looking like idiots because they can't handle the rain.

        I have not claiming to be an expert, but I know I understand the physics involved better than you.

        And your claim that NASCAR is unique because they bump and grind is also bologna. Did you happen to catch the finish of the 12hrs of Sebring last year? or pretty much any Grand-am or AMLS race? Ever see an Aussie V8 race, those guys really beat each other, they make NASCAR look like tea party.

        I am not claiming to be an expert but you really have no clue as to what you are writing about.
        • 6 Years Ago
        People that really believe a treaded tire can be made that would withstand the pressures required to run at 190mph on a banked oval are far worse than pansies.


        But to be kind I'll just say your misguided.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @DC: Thanks, I'm trying to race this year if (like every other racer out there) I can find the money. The MAZDA GT series I run in (we race in STS-2 with NASA) has it's first two races of the year the weekend of March 7-8 at Willow Springs. It's about a 50/50 chance that I'll be able to run. Check out http://www.sevensonly.com/
        • 6 Years Ago
        Carlo, you are a professional idiot as well.

        When it rains, they run nowhere near the speeds they can when it is dry. The cars don't weigh nearly as much as NASCAR stock cars, nor are the suspensions as loose in setup as what those other series race. Also, those other series don't run banked ovals which makes hydroplaning all the worse in stock cars.

        If NASCAR ran rain tires at Daytona, speeds would probably reach a maximum of 100 MPH and a cars would spin out at every corner. The dynamics of the tracks and cars in combination do not work when it is wet.


        So please, quit pretending like you are an expert.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Phaphoey, sure they may have some people that fit your descriptions, but you watch too many Will Ferrel movies for your own good.

        Why don't you go to all those other American racing series and ask how many dedicated fans they actually have and then come back to me. Why don't you tell me what other events sporting events draw 160,000 people to attend and mind you, tickets aren't cheap.

        Grow the firetruck up.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Thank you very much Tom. Your input is greatly appreciated.


        Good luck this season if you are still racing.
        • 6 Years Ago
        OK, all you NASCAR haters get ready to flame me. First, I'm not a NASCAR fan. I road race in GT-2 with the SCCA and in STS-2 with NASA. That's me racing at Willow Springs in my icon. I have raced in the rain more than I would have liked. It is incredibly difficult to race in the rain on a road course. No surprises there. One of the tracks we race at with the SCCA here in SoCal is Auto Club Speedway, where NASCAR races this weekend. We use the infield course and roughly 50% of the high-banked oval. On an oval, gravity tends to suck you down to the bottom of the track. To race at Daytona in the rain, with it's extremely high banking, you would not be able to maintain enough speed in the wet to stay on the banking. Because of the angle of the banking (and gravity), water runs downhill in small rivers and pools at the bottom. So you can't maintain enough speed to stay high on the banking, and you have to drive in standing water at the bottom. It's not any way to run a race. You'd have way more wrecks than you saw yesterday and in the end it would become a single file parade of slow moving cars driving around the bottom. The pace car would be able to maintain higher speeds than the race cars. So I have one question for all you "real men" calling NASCAR driver's pansies. When was the last time you drove 500 miles at 195 mph with 42 other driver's inches apart? When was the last time you raced at all? Probably never, because if you had you wouldn't be making such ignorant statements.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Oh, and a Cup car weighs 3500 + driver. Which ranges from 150-220 lbs I think.

      So 3650-3720 lbs. (I think that is dry weight as well)
      • 6 Years Ago
      The only auto racing that's worth watching now is Ralley and sports car racing.
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