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Discussion in 'NHRA' started by none, Nov 30, 2017.
Hey Alan, it wasn't a criticism of you or anyone in particular, I've never had a problem with track announcing. I know the basics and am always appreciative of any information nugget the announcers give me, I'm just trying to look at the races through the eyes of someone going for the firt time...just kind of a "reminder" that if you were creating some sort of list to improve the experience that you (or any announcer) remember that fans here today may not have been here yesterday. I think that people (this message board included) take for granted the basic terminology and events that maybe a "newbie" may not have understood. I haven't been to a national event in years so this may already have been done, but how about NHRA partnering with FS1 to come up with some 30 second animated segments to explain how certain basic stuff works. Then that is played on the big screen. Just thinking out loud here.
With respect to the second thought I understand your frustration, but I would argue the social media route. I don't know NHRA's budget but surely they could afford to pay someone minimum wage to weed through the social media platform and discard the beer questions and forward you the relevant tweets. I'd say give it a shot at at least 3 events and see what comes of it.
My reasoning for the second point is that I truly believe that NHRA, as an organization, is out of touch with the fan base. Not only will this allow you to provide relevant, real time information, but also let NHRA know what is on the fans minds. Everyone is fighting for the consumer's dollar, NHRA should be no different.
Maybe one for your big screen folks, but some more information on the drivers as they roll out would be great. Perhaps some stats on their year to date, their age, or even a short ten second hero sting. Not just the still photo with their names but something that conveys their personality, maybe its Jerry Savoie handling some alligators or Jeff Arend working at the Frank Hawley School. My partner really enjoyed the racing a lot more once she knew a bit about who was under each helmet.
Same with my wife. She is more interested in the personalities and back stories. Then she pulls for the driver she can in some way relate to...........
Here's one for Alan....the newbies will need to know what motor one is running in their new Pro Stock frankenstein rig
Dual windshield decals
Dodge powered by Chevrolet
Ford powered by Chevrolet
Chevrolet powered by Chevrolet
I have always liked to get to know more about the drivers and crew members. The old NHRA today shows where they would go to a racers home or shop gave fans an inside look in to their favorite driver. There are so many interesting and successful people in the sport, I like to hear their back story.
Let's try giving Alan some useful input instead of posting about the PS rule change in every thread. Thanks!
Alan---- .90 racing is confusing to the newbe's!!!! I know you guys do a great job explaining it in the booth but for the "average fan" they think it's well.... STUPID. I don't see a way to help that situation. You guys can explain why all you want but they just want to see "heads up-all out" racing!
I've always thought it would be cool if the NHRA, put in section in the driver's online tech card area (racer's will follow this if not the fan) that give announcers a database to pull current information about the drivers for consideration during their announcing gig. This would be dynamic and regularly updated if the driver/team show chooses or has a certain message/cause they'd like to communicate. Alan knows the pro's and certainly does that on his own. Joe Costello clearly roams the pits and staging lanes doing the same for sportsman, but it sure would be nice to help the announcers be even more informative by using slight tweaks to existing data repositories to help with this.
Perhaps a variant of this could also be an "alternative" to live timing .... lets say Joe and his significant other Sally head off to the races ... Joe wants to see live timing and has that going on his cell phone during the races, Sally really doesn't care about that, but she selects the "driver info" option and instead of seeing live timing she is served up that same personal data that the driver wants to share. Maybe there is even another option for Joe where a crew chief can write in some details about what they are trying to achieve on a particular qualifying run. Maybe technically somewhat difficult, but I think there are many times where we'd love to hear what the announcers say, but there is some other loud noise competing with the PA system.
I use basically the same explanation for newbies to explain the fast bracket racing we do, and the 90's racing others do (yes, they do ask about it).
In every race there are essentially two races, the race to leave the starting line at the ideal time, and the race to the finish line. In a heads up race, you can oversimplify and combine these into one race. But in a bracket race you really need to realize there are two races. In a bracket race, the finish line race is clearly handicapped to have both parties theoretically hit the finish line side by side. The starting line race is made fair (in many classes but not all) by electronics ... both drivers generally react to the first light at the exact same time (via releasing the transbreak). In a super class with a pro tree, both drivers react at the same time, then the handicap head start is given to the lower horsepower car, and you can generally predict the higher horsepower's mile per hour by the larger rolling head start he gives so they both hit the finish line at roughly the same time. Then you explain why it is generally advantageous to have the higher MPH car with the race unfolding in front of you. All of this is what makes drag racing the every man's sport ... in a number of classes at the NHRA national event the amount of money you spend has almost nothing to do with your ability to succeed.
If you hate it, and explain it like you hate it, have you really done the newbie any kind of favor?
We started drag racing about 10 years ago, I still get confused about comp eliminator ... what I do know is that I'm not smart enough and don't have enough money to run comp eliminator .... and that Lynn Nickerson used to have some hilarious sayings along those lines. I love the announcers we have now, but I miss him and Bob Frey.
The newbs aren't in the stands when those cars are running. They are in the pits, the bathroom, getting a hot dog, etc. Usually the only .90 run they will see is the semis and finals on Sunday. I also disagree with your assertion they only want to see "heads up all out racing". The stands are pretty empty when TAD, TAFC, Pro Mod, PSM and Pro Stock run. The newbs are there for nitro and nitro only. After they see the nitro cars it is hard to keep them interested in much else.
So the question becomes how do you convert the newbs to fans and keep them in the stands? I wish I had the answer or any advice.
Double edged sword. Do you really want them in the stands the whole time? If they are in the stands, they aren't out there buying t-shirts. They aren't buying beers. They aren't visiting the midway. They aren't interacting with the marketing agents that the sponsors have out there (Traxxas girls, Army display, etc). They aren't visiting with the drivers and watching the teams work. Which one is more valuable?
I don't think you worry about it. Even hardcore fans won't sit out in the stands all day to watch .90 cars. To make fans, you give them an awesome spectacle in the stands with the nitro cars, a great experience in the pits where they can meet drivers and get up close, you give them some good options for food and drink, you create atmosphere around the venue with live music and a 'party' feel and overall you make it so damn fun they just want to come back next time, or even better, go to another race further afield.
and to add to 'fans need to be moving about'.....i try to talk to food and merchandise vendors every year on sundays. usually
rite after finals when they are all packing up.....not the big beer pavillions. the small mom & pop stands out there trying
to make a buck. over the years i've heard everything from 'we lost our ass' to 'we're comin' back'......the odds are stacked against
them; i think last summer one couple told me they take home only a small percentage of profits from weekend. can't remember
how fees are, but i'd think there is a fixed fee just to be there, then a split on profit with track? and nhra? i'm sure rain can make
or break a weekend. imagine working friday and saturday just to break even, then you need sunday to make a profit.
so, get the fans off their butts and out spending money. everyone working at the track makes the whole deal work. and repeat
fans AND VENDORS make the next year that much easier.....notice depletion of midway vendors
Ask and ye shall receive. INPUT! Not sure how much they're askin for it but I'm sure they'll make a good deal for you.
Thanks for the response, I think I found out what I was looking for.
As a .90 racer, I don't care who's in the stands. I learned a long time ago, that we were filler and the attraction was the fuel cars...no biggie
Alan: May I suggest that "Left" or "Right" lane designations be added more often in the flow of things. I am constantly answering that question as to which lane the contestants are in. I understand the need to use the 'Lane-Sponsor' being re-enforced, but maybe just throw-in the L or R along with it.
Thanks for the excellent job all of you guys do announcing the action...!!!
John Capps Sr.
Noob poster here. I like prostock and I’m pissed there can’t be some badass dodges and fords out there. I wouldn’t care if toyota had a cpl as long as they hauled ass. I don’t leave the stands when nitro is done.
My wife and I both like Alan. Keep up the good work. To The Top!
I know the folks that run everything have all the money. ‘I don’t like it anymore than you do
ps I want different bikes to win, too. I own a 2013 Wide Glide