Is this as fun as it can get?

his month I want to take a look at our sport of choice, at least most of you who read this column probably feel that way, right? Originally, the founders of this sport and the guys who participated were all looking for something fun and exciting. Has that changed? Are we all enjoying the drag racing like they did in the “good old days”?

My experiences and information from conversations I have had with other active racers and racers that have quit racing can be summed up as a simple quote; “Racing just isn’t as much fun as it once was.” I wonder why so many racers and ex-racers feel that way. I have been racing for 35 years and overall I would have to say I still have a lot of fun doing it.

When I watch drag racing on TV I can just about gag. Same cars, same drivers, same car owners who can afford to buy the parts to compete, tracks all look the same, track prep is an art; rather than having crew chiefs who can tune the car to the track, they make the track a “glue-fest” that almost peels the rubber off the tires when they start to slow down. If there is something that is more boring, as far as motorsports is concerned, than the NHRA National Event coverage; I can’t think of what it would be. The poor announcers don’t even have any new interviews to do. Same guys with the cash are winning the rounds and they have to interview the same guys, week after week and look at their corporate stickered fire-suits they wear all the time. I mean, really; 90 minutes of hanging around the pit area in a sweaty, dirty fire-suit? Do you think they wear them because they fear they might walk into a big fire in the pit area? NASCAR is not spared from this either. They talk to the same guys, the same crew chiefs and now the cars are identical… can it be any more “corporate” than it is now?

WOW! I hope someone gets something interesting going soon. The same old, same old stuff is hurting my eyes and ears. I used to look forward to watching the TV coverage but now I put it on the DVR and flash through it on fast forward until either an interesting pair comes to the line, or, in NASCAR, when the yellow flag comes out and I can backup to the crash that took place. It is NO FUN to watch that stuff anymore. That is why both of their TV ratings have dropped like a rock.

When it comes to bracket racing there are troubles as well.

Is it fun to spend the money it takes to be competitive? Is it fun to get beat first round three races in a row? Was it fun that engine decided to throw the connecting rods out the side of the block? To 99% of humanity the answer to those three questions would be NO! No, that stuff is not fun.

Is it fun to meet with friends you don’t get to see until you get to the track for a race? Is it fun to see that your hard work and planning resulted in your car going faster and being more consistent? Did you like the feeling of winning a few rounds of racing or maybe winning the entire event? The common answer to those three questions would no doubt be YES! Yes, that is the fun stuff that makes drag racing a lot of fun for me.