Good article


Active Member
Oct 22, 2008
Edmonton, Alberta
I like that website. Matt Mclaughlin used to work for, but since thats an ISC run website, and judging by his opinions, you can guess why he doesnt work for


Cheeseburger Connoisseur
Oct 11, 2008
Janesville, MN
Yeah, MRN is ISC owned and anything that deals with MRN will be found on :shock:

MRN used to have their own website, but when they decided to create, they just added all the MRN stuff to it :)


2000 Man
Oct 23, 2008
You're welcome. Boy if there was ever a time when this sport REALLY needed more short tracks it's now. Especially with the new restart.


2000 Man
Oct 23, 2008
Another good piece from Tom Bowles

"Did You Notice? … The year of the “mystery debris” caution continues? No less than three yellow flags during the Chicagoland race were thrown for debris, one of which (according to Kyle Petty’s Twitter feed) was for a possible ice pack thrown onto the race track. Now certainly, there are times when throwing the caution for debris is a necessity due to obvious safety reasons. But through the years, the questions surrounding cautions thrown for pieces of metal that are neither shown on TV nor officially picked up on the race track has raised some cause for concern. But there’s a whole lot of conjecture and not a lot of factual data out there on this topic; so, I decided to stick my neck out and do a little analysis of my own.

Looking through the record books, I started a little tally of debris cautions through the first nineteen races this year as compared to 2000, the year before Dale Earnhardt’s death and concerns over safety rose to a new level. Before we begin, keep in mind I didn’t count instances where there was oil on the track or “competition cautions” NASCAR calls when rain leaves teams with limited practice time throughout the weekend. The cautions I counted were strictly for “debris,” corresponding exactly to the official results sheet for each race.

Let’s start with 2009. There’s a total of 39 debris cautions so far this year, with the only two races without them being California and Charlotte (races where rain was constant, causing so many stops and starts to the event there was really no time for these types of yellows to occur). If you’re looking for a little more detail, here’s a race-by-race breakdown of the yellow flags:

2009 Debris Cautions
Daytona: 1
California: 0
Las Vegas: 4
Atlanta: 3
Bristol: 1
Martinsville: 1
Texas: 1
Phoenix: 1
Talladega: 4
Richmond: 1
Darlington: 3
Charlotte: 0
Dover: 6
Pocono: 3
Michigan: 2
Infineon: 2
Loudon: 1
Daytona (2): 2
Chicagoland: 3

Turns out the Monster Mile had a monster of a problem with pieces of metal, with no less than half-a-dozen yellow flags officially caused by debris on the track. Not exactly the place you’d think would have the most (especially considering how competitive the last two races have been there, yellow flags or not) but statistics can surprise you.

Where the real surprise (or lack thereof) comes in is when you compare these totals to the numbers from 2000. Here’s how the first 19 races of that season stacked up:

2000 Debris Cautions
Daytona: 1
Rockingham: 0
Las Vegas: 0
Atlanta: 0
Darlington: 0
Bristol: 1
Texas: 1
Martinsville: 0
Talladega: 2
California: 0
Richmond: 0
Charlotte: 0
Dover: 0
Pocono: 1
Infineon: 0
Daytona (2): 1
Loudon: 0
Pocono (2): 0

In case you can’t add ‘em all up in between the zeroes, that’s a total of seven – yep, seven – debris cautions through the first 19 races that year. Now, to be fair there was a slightly higher incidence of yellow flags for oil back then, including a rash of five during the race at Pocono that July. But overall, the message is clear: debris on the track seems to have been considered a far less serious problem than it is now.

What’s the bottom line in this analysis? There’s no question NASCAR has gotten busy cracking the whip on safety. However, a nearly 600 percent increase in debris cautions from the beginning to the end of this decade seems to indicate that something has gone awry. I have a hard time believing a lot more parts and pieces suddenly fall off these COTs, and an even harder time that cars designed to be safe are suddenly at more serious risk against the same types of things which were falling on the race track nine, 10, even 20 years ago. NASCAR can claim all they want they’re not throwing cautions at specific times in order to bunch up the field; but with this type of disparity, man, you’ve got to wonder.

One more point here before signing off: every time you throw some sort of debris caution, you’re throwing yourself in some type of gray area where you put yourself in a box for explaining what type of criteria constitutes debris on the race track. And considering how badly NASCAR deals with gray areas – see yellow line, Daytona, and double-file restart issues as their latest examples – this is one line they’re going to end up getting burned on if they keep crossing it. At some point, you have to let the drivers race … even if it means one guy is dominating over the rest of the field. Anything less constitutes direct manipulation of the competition; and if the officials have the power to change the playing field at random, well, does that make what they’re controlling a sport?"



Well-Known Member
Nov 6, 2008
I am waiting to see it in action, and also in person, @ Bristol next month. Bristol, Richmond, & Martinsville will be the big tests and also the biggest controversy IMO. Martinsville will probably be the biggest test of those three. I hope to see it bring back some feuds to the sport like what we see coming out of last weekend. :yesshake: