Today is the 19th day of the new year. Maybe it seems long ago to some, not so long ago to others, but the resolutions made on the first of the year may have come and gone. I am sure for some of you out there, that is the case, but for others they maybe very happy with the changes they promised themselves. They may even be carrying on to make sure they adhere to those life changes many of us talk about when the calendar flips back to January.
I have talked in the past about a number of issues that I have had in my life, and I go into this new year with changes myself. The changes began prior to January, but they have been life altering for me. I made the decision in December to leave the company I had been an employee for over 17 years. The time for change had come. I was no longer happy, and really no longer appreciated for my contributions. I stepped into the unknown, and I am still within the unknown at this point. To be honest, I could not be happier with that decision. I no longer loath the direction of certain aspects of my life, I no longer have the anger in my life of what am I doing, and I no longer feel defeated each morning when I get up.
With having made those changes, my oldest son has now come to live with me. That has a big influence on my life as well. While he is only 13 years old, I have to look up to him, physically. He is the giant and is already taller than me. He is over six foot one inch already. With him living with me now, and he has an appetite for racing that does not quit, I am motivated to once again get back to providing top notch race analysis and perspective on this website. OK, so maybe its not top notch, but I do like putting together some writing and thoughts on racing.
Coming later this season as well, I am hoping to get the young man to begin providing some of his own articles on the site as well. I know he will welcome the opportunity, and it should be interesting to see a 13 year old’s perspective on the racing world as well.
With that out of the way, some big changes to the Camping World Truck Series and the Nationwide Series were announced by NASCAR today. Chase formats are coming to both series, heat races for the Dash for Cash in Nationwide, and a caution clock for the trucks.
We are familiar with the Chase for the Sprint Cup series, so therefore there is not a lot to delve into for those changes. The chase formats for each series slightly vary from each other on the number of folks making it in and eliminations, but overall I think a great change made by NASCAR.
The part I want to give some perspective on is the caution clock. Basic understanding is that green flag comes out, clock starts ticking. After 20 minutes if there is no caution on the track, a competition caution will be displayed. Times from green to caution may vary by track, check your local listings.
I am kind of torn by this at the moment. I see exactly what NASCAR is trying to do. I like the idea of giving guys and gals the opportunity to bring the trucks in for changes. Gives the chance for these drivers to showcase their skills at diagnosing the trucks and what changes may be needed. This will also bring the competition closer.
The problem I see is for those teams that do hit the setups and have great trucks. I see they are going to lose the advantage of having been right from the get go. When you lose that lead that you built up on the track, there are so many different things that can happen. Especially if you have a lot of trucks on the lead lap on those pit roads that do not have a lot of room on pit road.
I am going to reserve final feelings on this rule until a number of races have played out. I have to see this in action to see the benefits happen, as well as the detriments occur to drivers. I do think it will be fun to see, but I can vision some issues as well.
So there we have it. My first article as we inch ever closer to seeing competition on the track for the 2016 NASCAR season. With the announcements today, it finally feels real that racing will be coming out of turn four to get the green flag.
If it is cold where you are, because it certainly is here in Central Illinois where I live, stay warm. If it is warm where you are, please bottle some up and ship it this direction. Wishing all a great 2016 in all endeavors, and here’s to your driving providing a year full of exciting racing and success!