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The student newspaper of, by, and for Ames High School.

The WEB

The student newspaper of, by, and for Ames High School.

The WEB

NASCAR: a sport or just a faster version of a traffic jam?

747 miles southeast of Ames is a city called Nashville, Tennessee. Most would consider this a distance not suitable for a car ride., but rather a plane trip. Who wouldn’t prefer a three hour plane ride to an eleven and a half hour car ride? Apparently, a lot of people. The average NASCAR track is 1.5158 miles long. This means that the average 500 lap race is 759 miles. That is a simple enough comparison is it not? How exciting does it sound to watch a car drive 759 miles? At least if one were to drive to Nashville he/she would see beautiful terrain, but apparently some people don’t prefer the interesting sights . They just like watching cars go in circles. The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) was founded in 1948 by William France. . Auspicioulsy starting out as the National Championship Stock Car Series (NCSSC), NASCAR has certainly grown since then. There are now thirty tracks in America. The largest track, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, seats 250,000 people. While the smallest track, Iowa Speedway, holds 25,000. That is only 5,000 less than the number of troops Obama is sending to Afghanistan! NASCAR is the second most viewed professional “sport” on television, only surpassed by the NFL I have no problem with NASCAR. I just don’t see the appeal. It does, however, grind my gears when I see NASCAR featured on SportsCenter. ESPN stands for Entertainment and Sports Programing. What really qualifies as a sport anyways? I would say the first qualification would have to be that the participants must be standing. Not looking too good NASCAR. The second is that it must have a large fan base. NASCAR does have that. There are supposedly 75 million fans supporting NASCAR. Okay, cool, you’ve got people watching you, but hey, the Jonas Brothers have a lot of listeners but that doesn’t mean they don’t suck. Thirdly, some physical activity must be done during the supposed “sport.” Now I understand it can get very hot while you are driving your car. And you can lose weight in those extreme conditions. But really, who asked you to do that? At least when Lebron soars through the air and posterizes an unsuspecting fool it looks cool. I must be truly missing out if 75 million people find it amusing to watch cars turn left for 3 hours and scream OH MY GOSH HE’S MAKING THE PASS!! It must be like when babies go crazy when you jingle keys in front of them. That was cool 17 years ago. Now the entertainment part of ESPN is questionable too. What entertains me is certainly different from what entertains Rush Limbaugh. Maybe it is entertaining enough, but it isn’t a sport. But for gosh sakes ESPN, can you at least put on something a little less boring to watch, like baseball? A true sport has stood the test of time. Soccer has been around for more than 150 years. Basketball has been played for over 100 years. Golf was first played in the 15th century. NASCAR is too young to join the ranks of such sports.

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