Top 35 Onwner Points

United States
March 19, 2008 10:40am CST
With the advent of the Top 35 rule a few years ago, a premium has been put on getting and staying in the Top 35 in points. To that end, teams have gone to extremes to get drivers in. When Michael Waltrip started his team, getting Dale Jarrett was a priority because of his past champion's provisionals. Teams have hired past champions, like Bill Elliott and Terry Labonte, to get their cars in. Some have even "switched" teams, like Penske did for Hornish this year, to get new teams or teams outside the Top 35 in the field. This year there are some high profile teams on the outside looking in after Bristol. The teams of Kyle Petty, Jamie McMurray and Dario Franchitti, to name a few, are looking at what they can do to get their cars in the race at Martinsville, and hopefully back in the Top 35. One think that Petty and Roush are looking at is a points sway, much like Kurt Busch and Sam Hornish, Jr. did before the season started. Both teams have past champions in their stables, Matt Kenseth and Bobby Labonte, and would be able to keep both cars in. My question is: Do you think this is right to do in the middle of the season? Personally, I hate the Top 35 rule. It keeps some fast cars out of the race and does not give us the best possible field. This strategy, though, would be the worst possible scenario I could imagine. I would be totally against it and would loath the owners if they chose it. So, what are your thoughts?
1 response
@pismeof (855)
• United States
21 Mar 08
Jay, I know that a lot of people say that they're against the top thirty-five rule because they feel that some quicker cars are left out in the cold but,If you consider the reasons for establishing the rules in the first place I do think that it is the lessor of two evils. There was a time back in 2003 and 2004 when many of the team owners wouldn't go to some race tracks because of the travel expenses and such for the team. http://stockcarracingreview.blogspot.com and these teams were marginal at best anyway.NASCAR needed a way to insure a full field of 43 cars.Thus the advent of the latest rules governing guaranteed starters. If you really think about those few cars that aren't making the show,would they really be adding much more entertainment value to the viewer.If they really want to race with the elite cup teams they simply need to step up their game and run faster in qualifying.
• United States
21 Mar 08
Last year at the fall Talladega race, cars from Evernham, Penske and Davis, to name a few, missed the race, despite being in the top 15 in speeds. I don't think I'd accuse those teams of not stepping up to the plate. Now, the Wood Brothers, Petty and Ganassi are on the outside looking in. They cannot be considered to not be stepping up to the plate. The rule was to protect teams that had sponsors from missing races to part-time teams that did not have sponsors. Now, you don't go to the track, unless you're Yates, without a sponsor. Over the last year, here are some sponsors who have missed the show; Cat, Valvoline, Mobil 1, NAPA, UPS, Red Bull. Where is their protection?
@pismeof (855)
• United States
22 Mar 08
Jay,The last time I saw Kyle Petty win a race was at Watkins Glen around 1999 or so; the Wood brothers probably somewhere in the 80's when Dale Jarrett won for them.Keep in mind I love what they did for the sport and have the utmost respect for both teams But,I just don't see how that is relevant to what is happening in this new era. If you've been a fan for very long you should remember what was going on around 2003-2004.Did you enjoy seeing NASCAR going out to recruit fillers to run around for a few laps and then go home never having any intention of running the races. To grow the sport the way they have, NASCAR needed to alleviate that situation very quickly. Racing fans like any other sporting fans want to see their heroes week after week,not here today and gone tommorrow.If you can prove to be consistant and make the top-35 you deserve to play the game if not.. Bye Bye.
• United States
24 Mar 08
Now, now, you can't use inability to win as a reason to shut a team out. In that event, the teams of Kenny Wallace, Ken Schrader, Jeremy Mayfield and Scott Riggs, to name a few, are teams that will never contend for a win. What I want are the fastest 43 cars. If Petty and the Wood Brothers are shut out then, so be it. I just didn't like seeing the 9th fastest car at Talladega last year sent home because a team that qualified in the 30s or 40s had a guaranteed spot. So, I think we are really on the same page.