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Rantin’ & Racin’: Not Bad For A Big Ogre

By David Fallavollita, NASCAR Blogger for 105.3 The Fan | CBSDFW.COM
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Ryan Newman, driver of the #39 Quicken Loans/The Smurfs Chevrolet, kisses the bricks after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Samuel Deeds 400 At The Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 28, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Not bad for a big Ogre. Jimmie Johnson’s loss was Ryan Newman’s gain at Indy this past weekend.

The so called “Big Ogre” (Kyle Busch’s words not mine) picked maybe the greatest time ever to run a “contract race.” Newman of course is a free agent after this year after being told to “take a hike” by his owner/teammate Tony Stewart. Winning the Brickyard 400 is quite the resume builder, and looks nice under the bullet point “2008 Daytona 500 winner.”

There’s just something about emotions and NASCAR drivers. When somebody lights a fire under a driver’s you know what, they drive faster. When a driver is called out and criticized by another driver, they drive possessed. When a driver is told they aren’t good enough, they driver hungry.

Emotions affect the way you drive away from your driveway right? They affect you going down the highway? These guys are no different. Roller coaster, high running emotions have always been a part of NASCAR, and look how they took part in this race. Hello, Newman.

  • Was there a free money giveaway somewhere in Indianapolis this past weekend? Where was everyone? The grandstands were pitiful this past weekend. Yes the racing is not the most “exciting” at 2.5 mile track, but it’s not different then 10-20 years ago when it was 200k + deep. The luster of the race is missing and I don’t know what would fix it. Make it a night race?  Run on Saturdays again? Make it a chase race?
  • Shame on NASCAR. Shame on them for running the Nationwide series race at the famed 2.5 mile oval. Last year was the first time the “minor leaguers” ran to the big boy track, abandoning the greatness of IRP, which was always an action packed short track event. The nationwide series race Saturday was a bore, won by Kyle Busch of course, and did nothing to add to the buildup of Sunday’s race. Fix it. It’s ok to admit a mistake was made, so let’s go back to weekends we had a few years ago, ok?
  • Writers, announcers, and the big brass in NASCAR never ask this……but the fans would. Where have all the wrecks gone in NASCAR? There are more “is that debris or a hot dog bun remnant cautions” then there are crashes.”  If you watch NASCAR, you’ve seen these new promos the circuit runs out during telecast, which feature beatin and bangin and tempers flaring because of it. Where have those moments gone since Cali back in March? Are the drivers being too safe? Cars not slippery enough? Tires have too much grip? Naturally you don’t want bad wrecks that look scary or could injure like what happened to Denny Hamlin, but some nice edge of the seat “did you see that” moments would spice things up.
  • Kurt Busch says he plans to run the 2014 Indianapolis 500. It’s about time somebody thought of doing the “double” (running Indy and coke 600 same day). I don’t care who you are, that’s a story. The average Joe Blow pounding a brew while watching Sportscenter would be captivated saying “what? That’s crazy.” It’s good for both racing leagues, and hopefully this does indeed happen.
  • Listening to NASCAR on 105.3 the Fan is awesome. The crews of MRN/PRN are incredible. They could make a man playing chess by himself seem like the world’s most thrilling event. If you are anywhere near as frustrated as I am by the TV coverage’s CONSTANT commercials, just have your radio close by ready to turn on, if you don’t already. You won’t regret it.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - JULY 28:  Ryan Newman, driver of the #39 Quicken Loans/The Smurfs Chevrolet, leads the field into turn one after the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Samuel Deeds 400 At The Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 28, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – JULY 28: Ryan Newman, driver of the #39 Quicken Loans/The Smurfs Chevrolet, leads the field into turn one after the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Samuel Deeds 400 At The Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 28, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Races till the Chase: 6

Next Race: GoBowling.com 400 at Pocono

Green-white checkered: What an incredible name for a race. Here’s to hoping the field is set by a round of Friday bowling scores.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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