Monday, April 26, 2010

What do you think of restrictor plate racing at Daytona and Talladega Superspeedway?

Ladies and gentlemen, I will keep this brief as I have a statement to make on restrictor plate racing. But first things first, I want to congratulate both Kevin Harvick for snapping his 115 race winless streak in the Aaron’s 499 yesterday at Talladega and Brad Keselowski for winning the Aaron’s 312 at Talladega right after the Cup Series race, however while the spoiler was great to see, there is nothing more to say about Talladega except…

Now let me state the obvious, I’m not a huge restrictor plate racing fan period, as a matter of fact, while I don’t hate restrictor plate racing, I don’t like the racing neither and I’m glad we only run these races four times a year.

Restrictor plate racing in my eyes is a heart-stopping, yet hard to watch at times (or form) of racing especially in NASCAR. I would describe restrictor plate racing as a giant chess match and at the same time, a game of survival. Drivers don’t win one of these races, they survival these types of races, you just came in first in the game of survival. (It’s like winning CBS’s reality show Survivor”, you outwit, outplayed, and outlast your competitors, of course in this day that could describe most racing at this level.)

Of course when you talk about restrictor plate racing, you always have the fear of “the Big One”, however now a days, the big one can happen at any race during just about any time that is caused most of the time by aggressive driving or just one stupid move.

Amazingly enough, when it comes to restrictor plate racing, there is a good sized difference between Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway. Daytona is more of handling racetrack; drivers have a little bit more control, not much, but a little bit. The racing is better at Daytona as well. As a matter of fact, I would rank the 2010 Daytona 500 in the top 5 best races so far in 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.

However when it comes to Talladega Superspeedway, that's a completely different story, at times it’s hard to watch a race in any series there. There’s really no control and if you have read my blog before, while I have called one or two races in the past several years good, most of the time the headline has read "Demotion Derby at Talladega.... for NASCAR", its survival, period. That’s it, that’s not like watching a race at Richmond, Bristol, and Martinsville or even at Atlanta, but it is the art of restrictor plate racing.

Bottom line, yesterday’s NASCAR double-header at Talladega Superspeedway was a lot like having no racing at all. The racing just wasn’t my cup of tea. However just for the record, the Cup Series race was better than I thought it was going to be, but it doesn’t make my top 5 list of best races in 2010 so far.

One Talladega race per year on the schedule and it’s a non-points race? Hello yeah, it would be an off weekend for me. However ISC could also just build a Bristol, Richmond or Martinsville in the superspeedway’s spot that would work for me too. Where do you stand on restrictor plate racing?

Credit: John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR