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NHRA as a Team Sport-something to consider (1 Viewer)

Mike

Nitro Member
What if NHRA went away from the driver-centric concept and adopted a team-centric approach to their professional ranks? Instead of entering a driver into competition, you would enter a team. The team would compete for points throughout the year in an effort to win win a championship, same as always. The difference here is that it would allow part-time teams that maybe rely on rotating drivers to compete for as if they were a full-time team. Of course there would have to be a few rules so don't go flaming me about rules this and rules that. In addition, it would promote the sport in a different light and allow more personalities into the mix. We wouldn't always just be focused on the drivers that compete for a whole season. Yes, their job is important, but so is every single job on the team. I could see where this might have great marketing benefits for smaller teams and even the larger teams where they could field more cars with more drivers and yet still compete for a championship. We need to find ways to diversify. We have way to many drivers and not enough teams. If each of those drivers can bring some funding to a team and the team can compete for a complete season, everyone would get credit for their success (or lack there of). This is by no means a complete solution, just some thoughts on a Thursday.
 

none

Nitro Member
Interesting thought. Just as a discussion point, let's say Scott Palmer has funding to run 10 races, and Alex Laughlin has funding for 7, if I come up with the other 5? We, as a team could commit to run the season. Instead of all of us running Indy while some races go with short fields. If some of the part time teams were to band together and field a car for the entire season, would that be a bad thing?

Not saying I'm sold on the idea, but I think it's worth talking about.

Alan
 

Mike

Nitro Member
Interesting thought. Just as a discussion point, let's say Scott Palmer has funding to run 10 races, and Alex Laughlin has funding for 7, if I come up with the other 5? We, as a team could commit to run the season. Instead of all of us running Indy while some races go with short fields. If some of the part time teams were to band together and field a car for the entire season, would that be a bad thing?

Not saying I'm sold on the idea, but I think it's worth talking about.

Alan
Exactly Alan, not much really changes except you give more teams an opportunity. With regard to the banding together scenario, I maybe see lot's of issues but a rule stating that once a team is formed for the year, that is the team. Any break from that, drops you out. Even F1 is somewhat team based although the driver has a much greater impact. In my opinion NHRA is more team based than any other form of motorsport.
 

Dennis

Nitro Member
I'm not poo-pooing on your idea, simply asking questions.

In my opinion the best way to make this work would be to select teammates from different parts of the country so one can compete where it may be cost prohibitive for others to compete. So let's assume Steven Densham, Bobby Bode, and Terry Haddock formed a team. What happens when the US Nationals rolls around and, say Bode and Haddock want to compete? What happens to the points? Conversely do you think the unintended consequences of this would be reduced car counts? Personally, I don't see this as a net win for car counts.
 

Mike

Nitro Member
I'm not poo-pooing on your idea, simply asking questions.

In my opinion the best way to make this work would be to select teammates from different parts of the country so one can compete where it may be cost prohibitive for others to compete. So let's assume Steven Densham, Bobby Bode, and Terry Haddock formed a team. What happens when the US Nationals rolls around and, say Bode and Haddock want to compete? What happens to the points? Conversely do you think the unintended consequences of this would be reduced car counts? Personally, I don't see this as a net win for car counts.
I don't see teams being formed in that way, but a possibility for sure. I see more of any given team that has several drivers (rent-a rides for lack of a better term) having greater incentive to stay out for more than just the races they can get paid-in drivers...more incentive to race. There needs to be incentive to be better racers rather than collecting whatever $$ you can and saying you were there. Just think if Tim and Daniel Wilkerson could both drive and work toward the same championship, Same goes for Bob and Bobby Bode, Steven and Gary Densham, Terry Haddock and Buddy Hull, Terry Totten/Joey Haas/Mike Bucher. Scott Palmer/Alex Laughlin. I'll go as far as saying Tony Stewart/Leah Pruett. So many possibilities. If you want to grow the sport, you have to make it interesting.
 

mick

Nitro Member
at least some form of communication during off-season for teams to commit to races so fields are full. i know we all grew up with Q drama of 16+ cars, but i am perfectly comfortable with 16 cars showing up and making 2 or 3 Q attempts to set the field, then race. literally cap the entry list at 16, and have enough money for 1round losers. three 'major' races that would allow 16+. gators, indy, and vegas2, all three with 1.5 points. the addition of the two all-star 8 car fields was/is needed. the incentive to Q well to get in those fields will be good. now to just get a presenting sponsor and as much money as possible.
 

z28

Nitro Member
interesting idea for sure. not sure if it would have a big impact on car counts as the smaller teams tend to stay close to home anyway but it would certainly encourage them to combine data and share some parts
 

Chili

Nitro Member
Not the worst idea. If I remember correctly, Mark Oswald ran with two different teams in the late 80’s early 90’s to run the full tour. He ran the west coast races with the Over the Hill Gang and the east coast races with the Petosa family funny car. Of course points went with the driver but kind of a similar idea.
 

ol21stud

Nitro Member
I'm not poo-pooing on your idea, simply asking questions.

In my opinion the best way to make this work would be to select teammates from different parts of the country so one can compete where it may be cost prohibitive for others to compete. So let's assume Steven Densham, Bobby Bode, and Terry Haddock formed a team. What happens when the US Nationals rolls around and, say Bode and Haddock want to compete? What happens to the points? Conversely do you think the unintended consequences of this would be reduced car counts? Personally, I don't see this as a net win for car counts.
Using your example of Densham, Bode and Haddock. They would need a signed contract with the driver with the most points being the driver who would get the points at a race like Indy. NHRA would need to sign off on the contract too of course. The other two could race for the Indy Wally and $$$ but the points go to their "team car" leading in points going into the race.

This might just be a way to get more small teams competing all across the country. An east coast team that tries to make the full season but is in 12 place with the western swing most likely has trouble justifying spending the money. This would cure that and give two teams a way to be out their learning the nitro trade.

Not a bad suggestion now that the door has been opened two years in a row with the China19 driver change rule.
 

ol21stud

Nitro Member
several low budget teams combined are not going to be any more effective at stopping Steve Torrence than DSR or JFR has. It may keep a slot filled but that is all it will be, filler.
True. But that will still be better than 13 car fields. It also gives two or three teams the ability to gather information that makes them more competitive. It opens the doors for sponsor $$ from a regional sponsor that can justify paying for half a season but a full season doesn't make sense since they don't sell on the other side of the country.
 
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