Friday, October 8, 2010

If NASCAR Had Style Points, What Would Reuty Do?

I've recently become addicted to "A Conversation On Cool"  - a pictorial Tumblr site that oozes Rat Pack hip, Hepburn chic and McQueen macho.

And while viewing the site's most recent posts, I began to contemplate the idea of form over substance.  The under-rated importance of a good delivery.  The role that style plays in life and sport.

These musings led me to to wonder if style should count for more in NASCAR.  Racing is, truth be told, a sport which relies heavily on drama and big personalities to keep the tickets selling.

And this, in turn, got me thinking about David Reutimann.

Bless his heart. 

Reuty seems like a nice guy.  He is a talented driver who is gracious with fans.

Yet his pitiful attempt to take Kyle Busch out in Sunday's Kansas contest made me cringe.  I felt a little sad for him.  Perhaps NASCAR should tack on an addendum to its current dictate: "Have at it boys ... but try not to wreck yourself in the process."

I don't disagree with Reutimann's reasoning. After Bristol, ol' Reuty sure had a score to settle with KB.  And Busch takes other drivers out often enough.  But here's the rub - Busch at least pulls off his efforts at revenge with showmanship and a bit of √©clat.

On the other hand, if NASCAR were to hand out style points in the vein of college football, then Reutimann should have been docked at least a few dozen for his unwieldy smashup of the No. 18.

Other faux pas that should merit a loss (or gain) of style points in NASCAR (were NASCAR ever to adopt such a policy)?

Crying in Victory Lane: -50

Whining on the radio: -50

Cleaning your own windshield under caution: +100

Throwing another driver onto your car hood: +75

Leaving an "I Hate You" note in a fellow driver's 'copter: -75

Getting your wife to flip off another driver: -100

You get the picture. 

There's something to be said for cool ...


  1. I enjoyed your article!! I rarely (almost never) attempt to contact writers or even leave a post after reading an article, but this one struck a nerve in a good way and I wanted you to know it.

    I have observed the changing face of NASCAR for nearly 20 years now, and have been amazed and disgusted by the rise of these girly-men that we have at the top of our sport today. Great drivers, for sure, but with no concept of how to behave around others, and even less of an idea of how men are supposed to behave. Your list of faux pas and their associated penalties / bonuses was spot on.

    Sr. was far and away my favorite driver. Thanks for the little reminder of why I liked him so much. Every weekend I cannot help but think what would have happened to Kyle, Carl, and Denny had Earnhardt not died on that fateful Sunday. Surely their interactions with him would have caused some change in their behavior for the better.

    I also appreciate the reminder as to why I dislike Carl Edwards so very, very much. Not that I'm likely to forget....

    Two possible additions to your list?

    Calling out another driver's wife because you're jealous that she looks so damned HOT in her firesuit -50 (
    Almost cutting off another driver's hand while playing "Days of Thunder" after the race -100 (

    Please keep writing about what the real fans think about - not just the made up headlines like so many others!

    Rob K.

  2. awwwwwwwww -- crying in victory lane should be PLUS 50 points.

    loved the windshield cleaning video!