First, let’s just mention what every NASCAR fan already knows. Of course you know that would be when this race at Dover is over, four drivers will be eliminated from the playoff picture. That in itself is no big deal for many, (unless you are one the four drivers eliminated when it’s done), but it should prove to make this race a little more intense than it might have been in a normal circumstance. There are four drivers that almost have to win to still be in or their hopes for a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Championship in 2017 are done.
For some reason this season, I’m just not sold on the new playoff format. Maybe it’s just because I’ve had a lot going on in the last month and a half with flooding and Hurricane Irma and haven’t been able to play as close attention as I normally would or, maybe I’m just not sold on it yet.
I do admit some of the changes NASCAR made this year have proved to be interesting and, although I was admittedly non-committal for a short period of time, I do like the addition of the stages to the races. It appears it has caused the racing to be more intense throughout a whole race but I’m just not sure about this playoff situation yet. So far it has been uneventful, at least from this fan’s view, or maybe it is because the first two races have been fairly dominated by two drivers namely, Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Bush. For some reason it just seems they have a bit of an advantage over the rest of the field, especially those in the playoffs. Honestly, so far I have seen more drama coming from the descriptions of the talking heads (or the commentators, depending on your preference) than I have from the actual racing. I realize they try to make it interesting, but really, their reactions are much more excited and describe something more exciting than what is actually going on.
I don’t know, maybe I’ve just gotten bored this season or maybe I’ve just had too much going on to be as attentive as I normally would be by this time in the season. I guess it could be that I’m just not as big a fan of those that have been dominating the races lately as I am of others or maybe it is because I’m just not that interested. Don’t misunderstand what I am saying here. I am still a big NASCAR fan but this season just hasn’t been all that interesting to me for whatever reason. Doesn’t mean I haven’t watched every week and it doesn’t mean I haven’t paid attention to my favorite sport, there just seems to have been something missing and I really don’t have any other explanation than that.
Okay, I think I’m through with my little rant here and, just maybe, the rest of the playoffs will be more exciting and dramatic than they have been so far. I’m not really complaining, (even though I am sure it sounds like I am), but I am offering something from this fan’s view that others are feeling as well. I hear many talk about it week in and week out and also hear the reports of how attendance is down and the stands aren’t as full as they have been in the past. I have an opinion on that too but that’s for a whole other post that I don’t want to go into right now. Far be it from me to try and educate the NASCAR ruling body but somebody has to say it and it just may be me in the near future (or when the season is over and I give my opinion and assessment of the 2017 season.)
Dover is a track that is relatively hard to pass on and track position and pit stops have a large impact on how the day may play out for those trying to stay in the playoffs. Four of the drivers are basically assured of making it into the next round. Eight of the remaining twelve are fairly secure, (barring a disastrous day at Dover), but four of those twelve will be gone when the day is done. The ones on the cusp of being done are presently the lowest ones in points so far.
Kasey Kahne and Kurt Bush almost have to win to continue on to the round of twelve. Now I could go on and mention all of the possibilities in front of all of the drivers but that would be pointless at this point. There are a lot of possibilities and one of them is which of the drivers in the field wins this race. There is a lot of room for spoilers to take the win and then everything amongst the 16 is going to be all about points and four of them will definitely be eliminated according to points.
This will likely be one of the most dramatic races so far in the playoffs and could be one of the most intense and dramatic for the entire year. Because this one is an elimination race, there will be emotion, drama and intensity and that will make for an interesting day. The focus will likely be more on the four likely to be eliminated and less on which one of the field wins… well… that is unless one of the most likely to be eliminated wins and totally changes the playoff landscape…
See ya next time…
All views expressed are strictly the opinion of the writer
© September 30, 2017 – all rights reserved
Rusty Norman, Nascarfansview.com and Justafansview.com
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