For the past week, the motorsports media has been obsessing over Juan Pablo Montoya’s move from Formula One to NASCAR, and the potential for Danica Patrick to leave the IRL for NASCAR.
A number of open-wheel reporters/commentators have moaned and complained about how JPM leaving F1 for “tin tops” or “NAPCAR” is just another sign that open-wheel racing in America is not as strong as it should be. They complain about how merging the IRL and whatever name CART goes by now is the perfect solution, and how when it happens, no one will care about “NA$CAR” any more.
Now, admittedly, I grew up watching stock cars rather than open-wheel, but I just have to ask: do people still give a crap about open-wheel? I tried watching the IRL race at Nashville last night, but it just didn’t hold my interest all that well. Having 18 cars start the race didn’t help, and even reaction shots of Ashley Judd didn’t do much to get my attention.
I watch the Indy 500 because it’s Indy, and I’ve watched some CART races too, but they’re not that exciting to me. F1 is even less entertaining, because if you’re not Alonso, Schumacher or Raikkonen, you’re not going to win. And there’s no passing.
So, does anyone still prefer open-wheel racing these days? Can you explain why open-wheel is better than stock car racing? To me, an IndyCar is just a giant go-kart. It’s a bathtub with wheels, not a car. At least stock cars look like real cars.