Penalties and ‘The Bounty’ top this week’s Hot Topics featuring the negative and positive side of NASCAR.
First up are the recent penalties occurring so early in the 2020 season. Then, on a lighter and more positive side is ‘The Bounty’ Kevin Harvick is offering and Marcus Lemonis is making better.
Take some time to read my take on both Hot Topics. Then, share your thoughts in the comment section below.
Hot Topic 1: Recent penalties across the top-three series
Unfortunately, there’s been a rash of pre-inspection penalties across the NASCAR national touring series. And it begs the question of whether or not the existing penalties are severe enough?
While it is encouraging to see no post-race penalties as of yet in 2020. At the same time, it is alarming to see some teams failing once and others at least twice in pre-race or pre-qualifying inspection. When teams fail those checkpoints it requires a second or third time through to pass. It’s disappointing to see this weekly ‘pushing of the limits’ as apparently the penalties are not severe enough to see repercussions.
The weekly topic of discussion should focus on the racing at hand, instead of inspection failures. That’s why I am proposing that if a team doesn’t pass inspection on the first attempt, they don’t race that weekend.
As severe as that sounds, my belief is that it would cause teams to work well within the specified rules and eliminate the weekly inspection failures. Granted, there are the fluke issues that pop up which will certainly need consideration. But if the inspection failure is a blatant attempt to manipulate the rules, send that team home and let them try again next week.
The benefit for NASCAR and the fans is less time spent on penalties and more interest in what’s happening on the track versus off the track.
Hot Topic 2: ‘The Bounty’ set to payout any full-time Cup driver who beats Kyle Busch in a Truck
Driver Kevin Harvick and Marcus Lemonis of Camping World have each said they will put up $50,000 apiece to any full-time NASCAR Cup Series driver who will come in and beat Kyle Busch in a NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series event. Busch is slated to run four more Truck Series events in 2020 after winning his first race of the season at Las Vegas last week.
Personally, I believe the move is pure genius and a smart marketing strategy to gain interest in Truck Series races. It’s also just plain fun to see interest in someone challenging to beat Kyle Busch in a truck. Any Cup driver deciding to come in and race against Busch in the Truck Series will undoubtedly bring more fans to the stands and television.
Accepting the challenge is NASCAR’s most popular Cup driver, Chase Elliott as well as Kyle Larson. Both are attempting the task in a GMS Racing entry. Elliott will race at Atlanta, his home track. And Larson is all in for the challenge at Homestead. Everyone will have so much fun watching to see if Elliott or Larson can contend for the $100,000.
‘The Bounty’ will hopefully spark on-going interest and excitement for the Truck Series. A series that already produces some of the best racing every week with talented up-and-coming drivers.