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Pushing at Daytona February 14, 2008

Posted by claireblang in 2008 Season.

I’m here in Daytona where in the campgrounds and grandstands the fans are arguing up a storm. Whether it’s about the probation of Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart or the traditional argument of what driver will win the game of 500 Survival on Sunday – there’s a lot of talking going on. Yesterday I read an email on the air that had the phone lines from California to New York on melt down. Read for yourself – and then I’d like your take:

Claire, I enjoy your show and have called in a few times, but I want to start your day with controversy.

I’m a long time fan of what was NASCAR racing, especially Daytona . Now I’m not sure what type of racing to call it. I don’t follow a driver and typically don’t care about the winner, just great competitive racing. I want to ask a serious question, is pushing really racing? In what other form of racing can a winner be pushed by a competitor or teammate to the win? Does it happen in IMSA, SCCA, or USAC? Did John Force become a great racing having others push him to records and wins? Did Michael Shumacher win multiple world championships being pushed, maybe a little blocking but never pushing. Is APBA racing won with a push, heck you can’t even drag a boat to a final position. Did Secretariat win the Triple Crown being butt bumped or drafted?

Daytona is becoming a joke. Both Harvick and JR won at Daytona from a push. They were in position (yes), but would not have won without the help of another driver in the final laps. So is this actually racing or just complementary competition? Nascar needs to strictly enforce the no bump drafting rule and hold firm to it. The bumper or bumpee should not be the winner if they don’t do it on their own. Both Harvick and JR can claim the win and it will never be taken away from them, but did they truly win it on their own merit?

Racing is either aggressive or passive with rules to support all drivers and the actions; not just the favorite driver of the month club. Can you imagine USAC with a no touch rule? NASCAR must be consistent with their rules!

Atlanta, GA


Hey Claire B. Lance does not win seven tours in France without bumping and drafting!
M. Nemelka

If horses had bumpers, . . . . .THEY’D DRAFT !!! John, Ca.


Cb how many times have you seen a football player being pushed over the goal line and it counts!!


I don’t think Mark was being fair to Nascar…Nascar wasn’t looking to eliminate Bump Drafting.. But to tame it down a little bit..They were getting way to aggressive…So when he said that they were trying to stop it… that was wrong. I do understand what he was saying about the not pushing and shoving….. but I don’t agree with him on that…. This is Nascar…Not a third grade play ground…..If you don’t have dents and tire marks you aint racing….I love Bump drafting or Drafting…. and nobody and I mean nobody could do it better than Dale Earnhardt…His son is close but not as good…Earnhardt had a lot more finese.. where Jr. is more physical…

Randy Henry
Old School With An Attitude

JR even stated he did not win the race from muscle, or his skills, he was PUSHED! Notice his comment:

“That was fun,” Earnhardt said. “The Shootout is a neat race. I had a blast those last few laps. I didn’t win the race without Jimmie Johnson pushing me.”

Mark simply wanted a good healthy discussion and he got one. Mark is a NASCAR fan – he just wanted to see what folks would say about this and he got an earful of discussion.

I aired a montage with journalists on the topic and most of them said get over it – rubbin’ is racing and what is the difference between a football player pushing a guy into the end zone and a long-standing tradition NASCAR to have the push or bump draft be a part of the element of this sock car game.

I thought you’d enjoy the discussion. Don’t get too upset – Mark was just enjoying the sport of debate. Food for thought as he explained it.

Claire B Lang
XMSN Channel 144


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