Monday, February 10, 2014

Sexism is Still King In NASCAR


So the King thinks Danica can only win in Sprint Cup if no one else races, huh? Well, that's his opinion and he has a right to it but I have a right to my opinion too, which is that he a sexist old jerk - sort of like Phil Robertson, only not as fake.

"This is a female deal that's driving her," said Petty. He also went on to say that was good because it brought more publicity to the sport which was positive for everyone. Just as long as we all understood, you know, what the situation is and that Danica only deserves to be there as a publicity stunt, not because she actually has any talent as a race car driver.

Ricky Stenhouse finished 19th in the standings in 2013 and of course, he won Rookie of the Year. That was after winning the championship two years in a row in the Nationwide Series, so we might have expected him to out-do Danica, considering his experience.

Of the drivers who came to NASCAR from open wheel, in their rookie year, they ranked:

Andy Lally                                  30th
Scott Speed                                29th
Sam Hornish, Jr                           29.6
Dario Franchitti (only 10 races)    34.3
Juan Pablo Montoya                    22.7
A J Allmendinger                         31.6
Casey Mears                               30

One of the most promising young rookies, Davey Allison, ranked 31st in his first year. In 2012, Aric Almirola in his first full season in Cup, (though he'd been driving in NASCAR for several years) driving for Richard Petty himself finished 20th in the standings. Even Kyle Petty, (who also had derogatory statements to make about Danica) son of Richard, grandson of Lee, who grew up around stock car racing, didn't set the world on fire his first few years (or even the last few). And I personally don't see that a female on the track is anymore of a publicity stunt than the sons of the great drivers like Kyle and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Naturally, people are going to watch them more closely than Joe Blow from Pedunk. So what? Is Austen Dillon showing up in the #3 this year a p.r. move? Well, yeah, in a way, I'd say it is. Everyone knows the attention-getting value of that number.

Of course, Richard Petty isn't alone in his demeaning of Danica. I see the comments on every NASCAR site, even if she's not the subject. It obviously just drives some people nuts that she's even out there on the track and she actually has fans - Oh.My.God! Those people must be stupid! They're probably the same morons who voted for Obama!

And don't give me some story about how much you adore Johanna Long to prove your non-sexist creds because I don't believe it. You just want to pit one woman against another. Sure Johanna might do great if she was in excellent equipment but you don't know that. You just want to believe it because "take that, Danica!"

I wish Richard Petty hadn't said those things about Danica. I think it diminishes him as a spokesman for NASCAR but I guess a lot of men that age (in fact, a lot of men of any age) just can't help themselves. They wish it was still the good old days when women stayed on the sidelines and left the important stuff to them.