Car and Driver's April Fools' Day joke about President Obama ordering the Detroit 3 automakers out of stock car racing has apparently got NASCAR officials pondering the ramifications of such a mass exodus. Suffice it to say, they are not laughing. Jeff Burton, driver of a Chevrolet-badged racecar for Richard Childress Racing, said, "I think the climate that we're in today, it would be poor business to not look at the worst-case scenarios." Of course, he's right.

So, what would happen if one or more of the American automakers were to pull their official support from NASCAR? According to NASCAR itself, "the results would be far from debilitating." While none of the teams or tracks want to see funding from General Motors or Chrysler go away, it's not the only source of income to be tapped. Plus, Ford and Toyota are in no immediate danger of going belly up, and they haven't given any indications that they are planning to withdraw from NASCAR. Of course, if GM and/or Chrysler's revenue stream for the series dries up, we could see the remaining parties balking at sponsorship costs...

Be sure to cast your vote on whether you expect to see one or more automakers exit NASCAR this season in the poll below.

Do you think any automakers will pull their NASCAR funding this season?
Yes - More than one automaker will withdraw funding this season2115 (41.0%)
Yes - But just one automaker will withdraw funding this season1234 (23.9%)
No - I don't believe any automakers will withdraw funding from NASCAR this season1810 (35.1%)

[Source: NASCAR.COM | Photo: Wayne Whaley]