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Some people may wonder why I dislike NASCRAP so much. Others may understand all too well, and still others might not care because they hate all racing anyway. I had actually planned to write this BEFORE yesterday and had most of my reasons jotted down. Then the Daytona 500 happened, and I was able to write down a few more. What a JOKE. Here ya go.

--boring tracks: no shifting, no right turns, no braking required at these giant, boring, 2.7 mile 28� banked 'superspeedways'

--no skill involved, little to no actual *driving* done, some of the drivers have few racing credentials

--restrictor plate racing; WTF? what a crummy idea; the drivers hate it, the fans aren't too much into it, and it simply makes the racing more boring and more dangerous

--races last way too long; yesterday's race was 4.5 hours (this ain't the 24 Heures Du Mans)

--idiotic rule-making body that discourages and punishes any innovation, continually adjusts the parameters for each of the already near-identical body styles, and works toward total parity (this ain't a spec series or a Trans Am race)

--a little bit of rain or moisture on the track brings the whole show to a screeching halt, unlike most US club-level racing, motorcycle racing the world over, and almost all European auto racing

--there's really only one competent driver and team on the whole Winston Cup circuit (Jeff Gordon/Hendrick Motorsports) who know what they're doing each week, although they'd only be AVERAGE in any other series in the world

--even the best driver/team only wins once in a while because of either massive crashes, stupid arbitrary official rulings (as seen yesterday), or most importantly, blind luck

--what the hell kind of cars are these? that Ford Taurus has nothing to do with a production Taurus; tube framed, carbureted 5.8 liter V-8, 4 speed manual, fake lights, 110 octane fuel, pure slicks; STOCK CARS?? a Taurus is an extremely sedate family hauler with front wheel drive, a feeble V-6, and mandatory automatic shifting

--all the drivers (save for Gordon) appear to be assholes, especially to each other; it's been like that for as long as I can remember, but no other race series that I can think of is like that; witness WSBK where all the riders treat each other as comrades and friendly rivals

--the cars handle inexplicably poorly; no grip!!; on the one good track they race per year (last year was Sears Point, which has over a dozen turns), the cars have absolutely pitiful corner speed and slide all over the place; there are many street cars more competent than these things! A Mclaren F1, on ANY of the tracks, would stick to the road much better, average 15 mph faster, and get three times the gas mileage

--crashes are part of the attraction; the people who pay for tickets or watch on TV EXPECT to see 'good' crashes (mostly because the actual racing is so banal, they're looking for the next excitement), and the rule-making body does little to discourage it; crashes often result in injury, even death; if this doesn't paint the fans in the same light as WWF wrestling fans, I don't know what does; the crashes can often remove a dozen or more of the 'big names' from contention

--the racing is too dangerous; the parity of the cars and their poor grip, the type of racing they do, with restrictor plates, with these tracks where skill is in no way rewarded, where they're running four-wide and yet can't pass, where they have dumbass restarts (where half the multi-car crashes occur), it all contributes to a ridiculous spectacle; the cars are also poorly designed and embarrasingly old-tech even when compared to OPEN cockpit cars like CART, F1, and ALMS (although Zanardi got his legs chopped off last year in CART); you generally don't see massive pile-ups in many other race series; and NASCRAP is slow to evolve and adopt safety rules and equipment; finally, bumping your opponent with your car is encouraged, plain and simple

--yellows; must we really suspend the race for 20 minutes because some jackass scraped a wall or drove out to the grass? and how about those exciting reds (as seen yesterday) where the cars just sit there unmoving on the track for a half hour? there's some racing excitement, boy; many other race series (that don't feature 20 car pile-ups on the attract brochure, by the way) have a 'show must go on' or 'whatever happens, happens' ethic that keeps the competition and flow running smoothly; not NASCRAP

--the reason the races are ever at all close at the end is because of dumb rulings (as seen yesterday), terrible multi-car crashes (as seen yesterday), late yellows (every time a car even gets a little sideways anywhere on the track, the yellows come out, instantly and frequently eliminating every advantage of distance drivers worked to develop), late REDS (as seen yesterday), and absolute parity of the vehicles and rules; of course, the main problem is the tracks suck and don't engender exciting racing; alot of people can probably relate though, as alot of it looks like nothing more than rush hour traffic

--NASCRAP crap now appears on SIX discrete TV channels, including the new Speed Channel, on which it has displaced myriad other legitimate racing series (despite the fact that they don't actually show any RACES); it's capitalism at its worst; everyone involved is focused on raking in money rather than encouraging technical innovation, presenting an exciting product or highlighting hard work and driver skill

--the fans (in general), all the 'play by play' voices, most of the drivers, the officials, and the pit crews all seem to exude an air of ignorance and idiocy

--blind worship of and devotion to NASCRAP (in some ways an abberation caused by the fact that NASCRAP is simply being pushed everywhere and requires little thought or work to seek out; fans such as these are capable of little to no independent thought and appreciate being told what they like and what they're going to watch and follow) obscures what's going on in countless other club-level, national, and international motorsports; fans have no clue what they're missing