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NASCAR and the Olympics?

Lately, I've been hearing gossip about the Olympics. What does this have to do with NASCAR, you ask? Well, the things I've been hearing are about NASCAR someday becoming an Olympic event. While I think most of these are written in jest, I was thinking about how they would do it. And it seems almost impossible to me.

What if the host city doesn't have a track? Are they really going to pay millions of dollars to build one? Realistically, would another race ever be held there after the Olympics? I doubt it. Unless, of course, they get a guarantee from NASCAR that they would get a date afterwards. Yeah, right!

How often do the summer Olympics actually take place in this country? If they do have racing in the Olympics, they would be in other countries. Do we really want NASCAR to go global? This is a redneck sport. No matter how successful it is and how popular it is, it will always be a redneck sport. Ask anyone who doesn't like racing. "It's just a bunch of rednecks driving around in circles." Now, I for one, am from New York State. That is not a traditional redneck state. But, I would not hesitate to call myself a redneck. There is nothing wrong with it. And, guess what? I like country music too! While true live-in-the-hills rednecks are a little strange, most are just down to earth people. There are no pretentious rednecks. If they don't like you, they'll tell you.

Anyway, back to the Olympics. If it happens, what kind of track will they have? Short track? The gold will go to Rusty Wallace. Restrictor plate? Dale Earnhardt will walk away with it. Road course? Well, Jeff would dominate that. (Hey, maybe it's not such a bad idea after all!) And, who would drive in it? Cup drivers, Busch drivers, maybe some open wheel drivers. But, seriously, would anyone from Ethiopia enter? Would all countries have an opportunity or the wherewithal to compete? I don't think so. I have nothing against these countries. But, they don't have the money or the knowledge to be competitive in this sport.

And, finally, what would happen to the championship race? Are these drivers going to risk losing the championship to compete in the Olympics? I doubt it. NASCAR would have to postpone at least three races to allow these drivers to compete. I don't think even NASCAR is that generous. Or, how about a field of 43 substitute drivers? Now that could be interesting.

Whether the IOC and NASCAR has even seriously considered this is unknown. It's probably just some redneck with nothing better to do that made it up. But, I just don't see it happening. And I don't think race fans would want to see it happening. I know I don't. Unless...hey, maybe they would have a "powder puff" race! I could do that!

Article by: Julie Shippee