From the Marbles

Happy Hour: Looking to the future and looking to the Dodgey past

Nick Bromberg
From The Marbles

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Should Travis Kvapil be racing the rest of the season? (Getty Images)

Throughout the week you can send us your best questions, jokes, rants and just plain miscellaneous thoughts to happyhourmailbag@yahoo.com or @NickBromberg. We'll post them here, have a good time and everyone's happy. Right? Oh who are we kidding, this is NASCAR. No one is ever happy.

As Geoffrey Miller and I discussed on the award-winning Chrome Horn podcast, the Travis Kvapil story has disappeared in the wake of the Charlotte race and the NASCAR schedule unveiling. Of all the stories to have a short shelf life, the one that doesn't need one seems to have one.

Not that we want to be talking about a driver being charged with domestic violence by any means, but this is something that shouldn't have been pushed aside so quickly. Want more on that? Listen to the podcast.

Hey, there's also the news of Todd Parrott, the highest profile crew member to be suspended because of NASCAR's substance abuse policy. While I understand NASCAR's no tolerance policy completely, this news combined with the no news on Kvapil makes it impossible not to go "Hmm..."

Oh, real quick! We've professed our love for Steve Wallace's songs before, and every listen of his song here through October will be donated to cancer research. Keep on writing the racing songs, Steve.

Now, let's talk about the schedule, shall we? And those communists at NBC. Let's start with a doozy.

I'm a nascar fan but I. Won't watch it on nbc that is a leftist leaning they hate American thAt want are rights and freedoms but the goverment controled network they got there heads so far up Obama ass that if he stops they will come out his mouth. I will not watch anything on nbc.
- Donald

Please note that we did not touch up anything that Donald wrote in this email. The cleanest line of copy was the "Sent from my iPhone" tagline at the bottom. Donald can blame fat fingers for his typing, but I'm not sure what he can blame for his ridiculous thinking.

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FUNNY--NO ONE ever mentions as to how Brad K. did so well last year--out of the chase this year. How can you "experts" be so stupid? The reason is D-O-D-G-E. Most everyone wants them out , and,as usual, they got their wish. DODGE is the reason Brad won last year-against HUGE odds. No one wanted DODGE to win--they did everything they could to stop him--but 2 Dodges in the whole field in 2012--One guy named Brad--WINS "all the marbles" as you say. Now he drives Ford--the results speak for themselves in 2013. I should be writing your editorials--it's SO easy to see why Brad did lousy this year. Did you EVER think what would happen in Nascar if Dodge had as many entries as GM, Ford, & "Rice burner"? They would run away with the field as they do in Canadian Tire series in Ontario, Canada. This is WHY the other 3 manufacturers have tried SO HARD to get Chrysler out of NASCAR. This is NOT NEW. They've been trying since back in the '60's when the vaunted Hemi took over . GM & Ford were so mad--they pulled the "money strings" with the NASCAR management to get this engine outlawed. So, here we are again--Chrysler gets back in in 2001--took them 11 years to get Chrysler back out of it. It's so plain --you dummies can't see it!!!!!
- Dan

Maybe I'm insane, but no one wanted Dodge out of racing. It was a matter of financial commitment and the ability of teams to find other manufacturers with more resources.

There's also absolutely no basis of comparison for "Dodge is the reason why Penske missed the Chase this year with Brad." They had an EFI problem earlier in the season, and then a crash and Richmond and so on and so forth. Is that stuff going to happen regardless of manufacturer? Likely.

Dan, do you also still think the Hemi was being run in NASCAR? Maybe that was Penske's secret last year. Brad had a Hemi engine!


How sad is it that wondering about overhype is a completely warranted and natural reaction to anything in NASCAR these days?

I like to think that it is, and I'm optimistic that there will be some significant shifts. Will they be as significant as a lot of people want them to be? Likely not, and therein lies the problem.

There are so many fans who want a complete -- or near complete -- overhaul of the NASCAR schedule that anything that the sanctioning body does will come up short in the minds of a vocal minority.

And look, it's not possible for NASCAR to throw everything away and start over again. There are too many ties that bind to make it happen and too many people to please. And with so many tracks tied to two Cup dates, there isn't a ton of flexibility.

But while there's not a ton, there's some. And I'm hoping that NASCAR takes advantage of it. But be forewarned, brace yourselves for the cacophony from the echo chamber about race manipulation if the NASCAR season ends with a restrictor plate race. That could be nauseating.

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