DUIs and NASCAR

February 9, 2011
by Lee

Earlier this week NASCAR Nationwide driver Michael Annett, Rusty Wallace Racing, was arrested for Driving Under the Influence. Stop here for a second, if your state uses the term Driving While Intoxicated, I am going to use those terms interchangeably in this article. One in the same for what I am writing about at this time. Apparently Mr. Annett wrecked his car in some fashion, which brought out the police to investigate. It was determined he had too much to drink, and his freedom for a period of time was no more.

After reading about this story, I knew the article would show up this week. I hate saying that I knew it, but I knew it would be coming. The only thing that makes me even madder than the article is that I did not email Alan to tell him that the article would be coming out. So what is the article? The article is various news outlets, and political action groups, yelling and screaming that NASCAR must do something about this horrific person who was been charged with DUI. The sport must take action to help combat the fact that people get behind the wheel after drinking enough alcohol to put them over the legal limit to operate a vehicle.

I am here to say that is ludicrous. It is not NASCAR’s job to legislate and influence what people decide to do on their own recognizance. NASCAR’s job is to put on racing events that are fun and entertaining to watch. They already have plenty of problems doing that at Pocono twice a year. Let’s also back up a second and think about the sponsors of NASCAR. There are at least two cars in each race that feature beer sponsors, and other cars that feature liquor as their primary sponsor. Don’t forget that the pole award is the Coors Light Pole award.

It sounds real good for news outlets and MADD to demand that NASCAR police its drivers better and that Mr. Annett should be suspended immediately. He should not be suspended, and they should keep their nose out of NASCAR and Mr. Annett’s business. Michael did not violate any of the on track rules that have been established. Does this give NASCAR the reason to test for drugs and alcohol more often with Annett, yes it does. NASCAR is not the National Football League with Roger Goodell running around and suspending or fining players for accidently sneezing in public.

Politics has no business in this situation for NASCAR. NASCAR has no obligation to go out and automatically put out public service announcements for drinking and driving. Ask yourself this: Have you ever been to a NASCAR race? If you have, you would know that 75% of the patrons leaving the track could be arrested for getting behind the wheel of a car to drive home. [NASCAR is not alone in this aspect.  But since this site focuses  with racing, other sporting/concert events have been ignored] Even though this is the case, it is not NASCAR’s job to tell you not to drive. It is your job to be responsible for yourself and to not get behind the wheel. Besides, how are those sponsors going to keep sponsoring the drivers if the race fans do not bring and consume their beverages at the track?

By the way, the Bud Shootout is Saturday night. Be sure to catch the first NASCAR event of the year with qualifying via picking your starting position from a Budweiser bottle on Speed at 8:00 PM on Friday night.

Disclaimer:  We at troubleinturntwo.com do not condone or support the act of driving under the influence.

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