Two Kinds

Some guy at RedState got ahead of himself and had a go at my favorite motorsport (F1, for those who’ve been away living on the Planet Zarg for the past twenty years).

Saith Jerry:

[O]ur taste in auto racing leans heavily toward the NASCAR and IndyCar side of things. Not to slight F1, but it’s long been overly snobbish and high roller hoidy-toidy for our taste. If NASCAR is auto racing’s Lynyrd Skynyrd, F1 is its Dave Matthews Band. You get the idea.

Not quite;  the comparison is more apt if expressed that NASCAR/Indy are more like a garage band:

and F1 like smooth jazz:

Yeah, F1 is a high-roller sport;  I would have thought that Americans would understand that concept better than our European cousins, who are always just one regulation away from Pure Marxism.  (Then again, considering the Biden Maladministration, maybe we’re not doing too badly ourselves.)

Whatever.  The fact is that F1, especially with its all-new formula for 2022, is far more exciting to watch than the parabolic antics of NASCAR — and yesterday’s maligned Saudi GP at Jeddah was one of the most exciting races I’ve ever watched, of any type, despite the sideshow provided by Houthi missiles:

(And despite my dislike of Mr. Woke Lewis Hamilton, he was robbed of a higher finish by pure bad luck.)

I know that given my readership profile I’m going to get a whole lot of stick about this, but I don’t care.  2022 looks like being a brilliant F1 season.

And I don’t even like smooth jazz.


  1. Since most of time is committed to engaging activities I spend little time in front of an idiot box.

    But put 3 second drag races on it and I’ll take a look.

    7000 hp bombs microseconds from exploding lights my fuse and always has.

    Slow motion, long winded, high dollar vehicular ballet kinda lulls me to sleep.

  2. Taped but didn’t watch any F1 Races last season, because the racing became boring, However this season will be different so I’m watching again. …… and adding in the new factor that a rocket may at any point blow a big hole in the track or the pits was a brilliant idea!!! Too bad they cancelled the Russia GP. With teams getting truck jacked in Brazil at gun point, I can’t wait too see what happens in Miami!

    As for drag racing, I been watching some of the Pro-street teams on You tube do 7 second – 200 MPH runs in their “Street cars” then drive them 500 miles to another track and run seven’s the next day at another Track. Thoose kind of times used to be turned by Pro Funny Cars.

  3. Here’s my take on it.. NASCAR is a better TV spectator race to watch because its easier to watch.. you can see the whole field on the screen and understand what’s going on. F1, usually not so much. In car live feeds have improved the TV experience in all venues, but it’s just hard for me to follow with my admittedly short attention span.

    While all races are fun to watch in person, I agree with ghostsniper that drag races are really cool to watch and the one street race I ever saw (Anchorage Fur Rondy Grand Prix), was a lot of fun. I imagine taking in a F1 race in person would be awesome.. probably more awesome than NASCAR assuming the safety protocols would allow you to get close to the action.

    1. Watching an F1 race in person is very different from watching on TV. But the same is true for Indy Car, NASCAR, NHRA and IMSA. In person it’s more about the whole experience, the sounds and crowd experience. In any in person race experience the difference is in the access. Being part of the entire “infield” party ( and in the 70’s rowdiness ) is a very different experience from having credentials and access to the pit areas or being connected to a Team in some manner. Each has their plusses and downsides. Both are worth the time and $. See an event in person….. but remember to also Tape it so you can see all that happened in the race, because by being there you miss half the action, but you experience more than TV ever will provide.

      ….. and yes in F1 in the 70’s you could get much closer to the action…… probably too close.

  4. It’s interesting that our elites, mostly folks with BA degrees, look down on NASCAR, the only sport in which a majority on nearly every team have mechanical engineering degrees. To get that mech e degree they have passed a multivariable calculus course before they got to the second semester of their sophomore year. The elites’ view of them as knuckle dragging bumpkins doesn’t fit the data.

    F1 racing is dominated by European factory teams and their justly respected engineering staffs. The “right people” seem to respect that more than they do the Americans doing the same jobs.

  5. Likening F1 to “smooth jazz” is an extreme case of damning with faint praise. “Smooth jazz” is certainly smooth, to the point of somnolence, but it isn’t jazz and it’s more boring than New Age for solo piano.

    F1 would be a lot more interesting if it had a lot fewer rules. I grew up as it was changing from front-engine to rear-engine cars. The creativity and sheer joie de vivre of both builders and drivers was what made the magic of Formula One. Let’s see an engine size limit, single standard for fuel, and a couple of key safety features made mandatory, and make F1 a real sport again.

  6. “our European cousins, who are always just one regulation away from Pure Marxism”

    And yet, they have as many of the ultra-wealthy as we do, and their family dynasties last longer. The more government is allowed to regulate, the more loopholes will be hidden in the legislation for the benefit of those with the wealth to buy legislators.

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