The story if the week in NASCAR was not who won the race or "races" last weekend in Kentucky, but what went on after the race. Apparently traffic was so ensnarled that spectators were caught in traffic for hours and were gridlocked from leaving the track.
I have been going to NASCAR races for a number of years and typically when there is an excess of 100,000 people at a venue there will be traffic issues. Moreover, when the venue is hosting its first NASCAR Sprint Cup race, there is bound to be some logistics that need to be readdressed.
The racing in Kentucky was not bad. In fact, it was comparable to many of the races we have seen this year. Yet even those who did not attend the race had to weigh in on their disappointment with both the racing and the traffic.
NASCAR has made some great changes over the last few years and they have made changes that have not been so good. The point is that rather than sports where ownbers lock out players to horde revenue, NASCAR is trying new things years after year to address popularity and make the sport more fan freindly for those who attend the races.
I was at Atlanta in 1992 for Richard Petty's last race. The traffic was really bad. You didn't hear too much about it then becuae the internet was not so prevalent. I was at the last real Southern 500 in Darlington. The traffic was insufferable, but that was before NASCAR'Jimmie Johnson decade began.
Fans have changed and so has the framework that made NASCAR a nationwide phenomenon back in 1979 when the first Daytona 500 was broadcast flag to flag throughout the country. Lest we forget the man who was shot dead in traffic outside of Daytona because he was cut off in traffic leaving the speedway.
Kentucky Speedway and NASCAR will address the traffic issues and may next year or the year after those changes will ease up the traffic around the speedway just a little bit, but what the traffic does not do is lessen the level of competition on the track or take away from the laps that our favorite drivers are vying for the win. If you weren't at the race, get over it. The traffic was not your issue, the racing is. If you have an issue with the racing make a statement and back it up. If you can not do that, move on to F1 or something else.
Kentucky was a decent race. Not the best one this season, but not the worst. Points positions were jumbled up a little bit and we have a great battle brewing for the 2011 Chase for the Championship. I am looking forward to this weekend back up in the northeast.