Public Forum – Aug. 12, 2009


Pocono Injustice
First of all, I feel for Denny Hamlin and the loss his family suffered.
However, that does not give him the right to punt David Reutimann out of the way and possibly out of The Chase. He took out Reutimann and Marcos Ambrose, and all was well because Denny had such an emotional day.
Robby Gordon and David Stremme were penalized at Pocono for rough driving, but I guess in the NASCAR world of playing favorites, it made for a much better headline to see the grieving Hamlin win at all costs.
Ken Bagenstose, Jr.
Temple, Pa.

Can’t Get A Ticket
I thought the IndyCar race from Kentucky was fantastic. I told my wife we will get tickets and go to Chicagoland Speedway Aug. 29.
To my surprise, I can’t buy tickets for it. I have to buy a track package, which means every race in August. I think there are four.
So, when the race rolls off and there are thousands of empty seats, don’t be surprised. If I ran a track and someone wanted a ticket, I would sell them one.
I’m glad it’s on TV.
David Taft
Rochester, Ill.

Credit Goes To Lucky Dog
I was surprised to hear commentators raving about Jimmie Johnson’s great effort at Pocono, going from three laps down to a 13th-place finish.
While Johnson deserves credit for persevering, the fact is that NASCAR’s ludicrous Lucky Dog rule gets the credit.
Unlike in years past when a lapped driver had to fight his way back and actually pass the leader to get his lap back, now it is handed to them, often, as in Johnson’s case, with a debris caution.
The Lucky Dog goes against the whole concept of racing and should be scrapped. Then if a driver goes a lap down and rebounds to earn a win he has truly accomplished something.
Also, though the emotional Denny Hamlin win made a good story, how does NASCAR ignore the blatant punting of David Reutimann, a driver working hard to earn a spot in The Chase?
Wayne DeWald
Arlington, Texas

Tooting His Own Horn
It’s not often that I can toot my own horn, but here’s one.
Saturday night I was watching the truck race, no, the Toyota Tundra 200 truck race, which Ron Hornaday, Jr. dominated in a Chevy. His fifth win in a row I might add.
I heard the announcers and who do you think it was? The ‘dual airbags,’ DW and Mikey Waltrip. This is the part where I say ‘I told you so.’
Mikey gets out of the car and goes straight to the announcer’s booth. I watched the race with the mute on.
Ron Goss
Pencil Bluff, Ark.

Invert For The Fans
This is in response to Ed Fisher’s letter (July 15) about too many races nowadays being won from the front row with little or no passing for the lead.
Here in the East, the central Pennsylvania Posse sprint cars have had a system of inverting the top-12 qualifiers from heats for years.
There has been an opposition to this by a few competitors, who want the inversion number reduced. The tracks, thankfully, have not given in to their request.
Yes, passing in the winged sprints cars is extremely tough these days, but a few drivers have shown that it can be done. Brian Montieth, for example, has probably passed the most cars all season long.
A prime example of an excellent handicap from the fans’ standpoint is conducted by the ARDC Midgets. The high point cars start well in the back and the result is an excellent show for the fans with plenty of passing and almost no winners coming off the front row.
The local 358-modified tracks also know the meaning of the words handicap and inversion.
Most of the problem of too little passing and fast cars starting up in the front of the field stems from tracks and organizations that seem to cater to the drivers with little thought given to the paying race fans. And, in my opinion, that is just wrong.
Gary Grim
Fleetwood, Pa.