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NASCAR: Inexperienced rookie or dangerous weapon.

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posted on Mar, 10 2004 @ 11:15 AM
here's an article on rookie of the year candidate Johnny Sauter, who has single handedly taken out more race cars than anyone this year.

Inexperienced rookie or dangerous weapon?
April Howard
March 10, 2004

Drivers are frustrated, fans are furious and no one seems to know the answer to the most asked question of the season. “Is Johnny Sauter simply an inexperienced rookie or is he a dangerous weapon while behind the wheel of a stock car?”

So far this season Sauter has been involved in several large accidents, namely the “Big One” during the Daytona 500 which resulted in Michael Waltrip barrel rolling down the backstretch and last Saturday during the Busch series when he swerved into the side of Matt Kenseth when they were racing with the leaders resulting in damage to both cars and ruining Kenseth’s chances for a victory.

Several drivers have questioned his ability over the past several weeks. Jeff Gordon was reported to have told his crew during Sunday’s Cup race that “Someone needs to have a talk with the driver of the No. 30 car, and I wouldn’t mind to be the one to do it.” Those are pretty strong words coming from a four-time Cup champion not known for losing his temper. Cup driver and regular Buschwacker Michael Waltrip exchanged barbs with Sauter through the press, stating that “I wonder if he remembers Daytona when he took out 12 of us and I did a barrel-roll down the back straightaway. If Johnny Sauter never runs another race, it won't be any sweat off (me)."

Fans across the nation are frustrated because their driver has been taken out of contention by a run-in with the Nextel Cup Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate. After the checkered flag flew on the Daytona 500 message boards were talking about two topics, Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s win and “The Big One.” Fans didn’t know if it was inexperience that triggered the accident or if it was a lack of talent. Those questions are still unanswered and the topic seems to resurface after every race because inevitably, Sauter has made contact with someone while behind the wheel of the No. 30 AOL Chevrolet or the No. 27 Kleenex Pontiac.

Sauter is in his 3rd complete season in the Busch Series and was Rookie of the Year in 2002 when he was driving for Richard Childress he is also the new driver of the No 30 car in the Nextel Cup Series. I have a hard time believing that after spending several years driving in the Busch Series that it is a lack of experience that is causing the problems on the track, so it must be a lack of talent. Sure, he is young, but there are younger and less experienced drivers in the field that are not repeatedly getting into trouble on the track. On the other hand, Richard Childress is not in the habit of hiring drivers without potential and talent, so obviously there is something we are all missing.

Regardless if it is an issue of experience or talent someone needs to sit Johnny Sauter down and explain to him that he needs to take it easy on the track. He needs to gain some respect back from his fellow competitors before the season gets much older because if his behavior continues he won’t have an ally within 100 miles of the track.

posted on Mar, 17 2004 @ 05:25 PM
The changeover from Busch to Cup, appearing insignificant, is actually huge.

The pressure's on and off the track are so completely different,...and continuous.

I have heard more than one full-time driving regular of the Busch leagues, say they would rather run busch than cup, becouse then they can still enjoy it.

Going Cup, apparently changes everything.

Although Busch has grown up and is now very similar to Cup racing, the atmosphere, cost, and off-track pressure is much lower.

Many driver's are tested there for driving skills and ability in the Busch and Truck class.

But Cup is the whole package, and much more competetive. You get there by ability, and luck. You last years by demonstrating you have the 'Metal' to take a big hit, wreck a multi-million dollar car that your boss owns, and everytime a mic is stuck in your face, you work for the sponsor, who by the way pays your boss and team mates, so you gotta be smart and cool.

Testings, interviews, practice, autograph sessions, sponsor events, NASCAR meetings, team meetings, bla bla.

Point is, doesnt sound like the kid is going to make it in Cup racing. Unless....

posted on Mar, 17 2004 @ 07:12 PM

Originally posted by smirkley

Point is, doesnt sound like the kid is going to make it in Cup racing. Unless....

Unless he realizes he's not going to win many races in the cup series for a couple years, and quits taking chances that put the whole field at risk of being taken out. As a rookie he needs to realize that a top ten is just as good as a win for a veteran. he needs to quit rubbing fenders real fast or he's gonna be blackballed by everyone who's been in the series awhile. When you trade paint with every car in sight, you're gonna make enemies real fast and in this sport rubbing someone the wrong way is gonna put you into the wall real fast.


posted on Mar, 17 2004 @ 08:06 PM
why do they let him race if he is so dangerous

posted on Mar, 17 2004 @ 08:45 PM
In the ol' days, before 1991, it was expected that a rookie would take up to ten years before even beginning to place well in the points, let alone win.

The rookie got a lesser car, on a lesser team, with lesser parts. Only after showing that he can do the job, did anything else change.

Then came Jeff Gordon, and that ruined everything.

Now every kid who got good at playing NASCAR video, ran a couple of go carts, and maybe ran a couple of late model banger's,

gets the media, the car, and the team.

When a 19 or 20 year old, that ran Busch for one or two years, and maybe a little before that at some saturday night track, and alot of video games before then as a kid, gets thrust into the Cup Class and Top Calibur Team, the inexperience will show.

Some will rise to the calling, many will not.

But more truck or busch time should be mandatory.

(but that would also cause problems with NASCAR's difficulty filling the field at both cup and busch races.)


posted on Mar, 18 2004 @ 06:07 PM
how many young kids are out there though?

posted on Mar, 18 2004 @ 07:00 PM
i have to say rookies are dangerous in any sport just for the fact that they know nothing about the proffesinoal pace

posted on Mar, 18 2004 @ 07:30 PM

Originally posted by Ben
how many young kids are out there though?

I think that currently on the Nextel Cup roster there might be 2 or 3 people under the age of 20. But in the Busch and Truck circles there are quite abit more of them. Most of these guys aren't quite mature enough to impress a Cup owner into giving them a ride, but some do and they're good drivers, it's just that they aren't used to that level of competion. so they get frustrated and do something stupid. However this Sauter kid started being dangerous last year in the Busch series. Last year Kenseth raced a limited Busch series schedule, and in at least 2 of those races he was leading, most likely going to win, and guess who wrecked him, that's right none other than Johhny Sauter. Now this year Kenseth runs another Busch race at the Rock and guess who's taken him out again, same story he was leading and probably gonna win. Maybe Sauter isn't as dangerous as i think, maybe he just likes taking Kenseth out of contention. Either theory has proof to back it up, but most of the problem is as stated before that rookies now get into good equipment that they didn't get in the past. If they had their second hand stuff they wouldn't be in a position to cause this kind of damage.

posted on Mar, 19 2004 @ 11:14 AM
On my level: I never liked Rookies and never will, they are a bunch of idoties i dont care how good they are or how good they will be, there sole purpose is to watch and learn and do things for the veterans, their laundry and getting them water and things like that. Not racing not playing until they know the game and the responsibility it comes with.

posted on Mar, 19 2004 @ 09:10 PM

Originally posted by godfather602
I never liked Rookies and never will, they are a bunch of idoties

Everyone is a rookie at one time.

posted on Mar, 20 2004 @ 07:19 AM
i may be wrong but i don't believe that nascar has a test for rookies like they do in some other series, in nascar i think that if you have a car and can drive it fast enough you are in the race, i don't recall anyone ever being banned or suspended for being dangerous or incompetant either, maybe it is time for some kind of nascar licensing system?


posted on Mar, 20 2004 @ 10:31 AM
what do you mean tj? like you have to earn to race on the tour

posted on Mar, 20 2004 @ 11:22 AM
for a rookie indy car driver to race at teh speedway they have to pass a rookie test, to race in f1 you need to have a license, these are from the sanctioning bodies, i don't know of any for nascar, as i said i may be wrong and they may have one, there have been drivers in nascar that have been put on probation, and even sat down for a race or two, but i don't remember them ever saying that you are too dangerous to be on the track, go get some more experiance and try again in a couple of years, richard childress is a respected car owner, and has a good eye for talent so it is hard to tell what the problem is

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