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 Columns & Editorials

August 14, 2001

Conduct On and Off The Speedway

by Sharon Fancher

I've had the experience of attending racing events at different tracks in the past few weeks. Myself and others as well have seen some very bad behavior taking place at different tracks, involving the same situations at each of them. I know this doesn't just happen here, it is being demonstrated everywhere in the United States.

I sit in the stands and listen to people talk about certain situations occurring at different tracks. How disgusted they are at seeing these things take place and they wished they had spent their money watching a movie or doing something else. People are becoming more and more upset at racing and what it is becoming today.

The fans, drivers, etc., are dropping fast because of this. It is no longer a sport for people to bring their families to sit and watch good honest racing. It has been turned into some kind of uncivilized circus between racers, officials, track owners, fans and everyone else involved. Racing is a sport that does involve some type of contact occasionally with the cars and doesn't mean the fans, pit crew, etc., should respond with violence. Let's face it, that is why it is called racing. Everyone knows contact of the cars is sometimes intentional and sometimes it isn't. But for the drivers to come on a track and blatantly demonstrate this kind of contact is ridiculous. The intentional contact of cars, violence of the fans..., etc., is very bad for the racing industry.

For the track officials to let this type of action go unpunished, will hurt the racing industry all around. Everyone knows that at some point in time, there has been certain situations accidentally and purposely overlooked on the track. But this happens in any type of business for one reason or another. I remember when you could go to any given track around and the stands and pits were always packed. But for everyone involved to show such immaturity is such a disappointing factor in racing.

You go to the races and hear people in the stands screaming obscenities, drivers on the track refusing to exit the speedway when told and getting out of the car to fight with the officials, officials making unjust calls (mistakenly and intentional), the intentional taking out of drivers, bashing on message boards, and so forth and so on.

I don't need to sit here and explain everything that is happening, everyone out there witness's it themselves. And I don't care how perfect your vision or hearing is, someone is always going to see or hear it differently. This isn't a perfect world. Yes, I agree that some issue's being brought to everyone's attention, does need addressing. But they need to be addressed by everyone involved in a calm, courteous, and mature manner.

The reckless driving, violence in the stands and bashing of everyone isn't going to get it taken care of! Why can't people just realize that and do their part to build racing up not tear it down? We are after all a big family right? Positive reaction almost always results in positive outcomes. Negative reactions almost always results in destruction. Watchout when biting the hand that feeds you, after all the decision is yours.......

by Sharon Fancher

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