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This is the Statt Mann Baby. Time to Scatt a little bit.

You wonder what’s going on at NASCAR.

NASCARlogoA report this week said dozens of employees were let go. Sports Business Journal said the layoffs amounted to less than five percent of NASCAR’s workforce.

Unless you’re one of the “dozens,” this may not be much of an alarm. NASCAR doesn’t need a lot of people in the home office to conduct business. Much of its work force shows up at the racetrack to run the weekend events.

But when you send people home that’s always cause for concern. Connect some dots in the business picture. NASCAR isn’t in the racing business as much as it’s in the advertising business. Its product is audience.

NASCAR sells ratings or eyeballs and butts in seats to advertisers who want to sell something to those eyeballs and butts. If there are fewer eyeballs and butts, the billing invoices are smaller.

Smaller income means less money to spend on everything including salaries.

And still, NASCAR won’t change the way it builds its ultimate product. Odd times.

Peace.

 

Blake BaggettPhoenix Supercross Winner Blake Baggett waited some five years to come into the Freak Nation as a winner. But he did it Sunday night after a dramatic race in Phoenix Saturday night on his Bubba Burger KTM. The win left him fourth in points. Baggett is a veteran on the supercross circuit but he’s stepping up in skills this season. And his experience allowed him to explain some of the supercross nuances to The Freaks. Listen…

Mark MartinIn 2003 veteran NASCAR Cup driver Mark Martin was a year away from a near Cup championship in the number six Ford for Roush Racing.
Martin visited with The Freaks on our Saturday show Victory Lane on Sirius Radio (before the merger with XM!). Martin had just signed his new sponsorship with Viagra, a new product at the time. He talked about that sponsorship, its importance to the NASCAR community and his commitment to his own personal fitness regimen. Listen…

Pauly ShoreComedian and Actor Paul Montgomery Shore — just a couple weeks from his Feb 1st birthday – came into The Freak Nation Sunday night to talk about his diverse career that went from MTV to a chain of big screen feature films.  Shore is best known for his roles in several comedy films in the 1990s, including Encino Man (1992), Son in Law (1993), and Bio-Dome (1996). He’d love to see his standup experiences take him to a one-man show on Broadcast and/or Las Vegas.  This is a great conversation with a headliner.  Listen…

Will Power2002018 Indianapolis 500 Winner Will Power came into The Freak Nation after his likeness on the Indy 500 Borg-Warner Trophy was revealed. Power talked about the engraving, posing for the artist and visiting the artist’s 60 acre farm for final posings. He said the artist, William Behrends, knew Will’s face as well as Will did at the end of the process. Then, you think you could pass the citizenship test Power is preparing to take?. Listen.

SC_FreaksAt the end of every year the SpeedFreaks announce their Freakies, the best in the motor racing year. Who’s the Driver/Rider of the Year? The Race of the Year? The Freak of the Year? And, a special look at the Story of the Year from just one of the Freaks. Listen…

Marlon WayansComedian and Actor Marlon Wayans visited with The Freaks before his weekend of Stand Up Live in Phoenix.  The celebrated comedian had a great conversation with The Freaks about the current state of comedy in America and how culture is changing what’s funny for many people.  Wayans, however, isn’t willing to change his stand up act to meet a changing culture.  Listen…

This is the Statt Mann Baby.  Time to Scatt a little bit.

For more than a decade I was a complete fan of the sport rallycross.  I loved the short races, the high horsepower cars, the pavement and dirt tracks and the drivers who could navigate all of it.
Rallycross photos © QNIGAN.COM 2014
Early on, though, I noticed that promoters here in America were selling the sizzle and not the steak.  Action stars like Travis Pastrana, Ken Block, and Tanner Foust were the draw.

But as those stars dimmed, the sport dimmed with it.  Now the TV is gone, the heat around the hype is gone and efforts to promote the sport in America are more difficult.

There was a big blow this week when the World Rallycross Championship decided to take away the points from its event at Circuit of the America’s in Texas. The event is still on the calendar but it’s unlikely the European stars will return without a points incentive.

Sad.  Selling stars works as long as the stars stay important.  When they don’t, what do you have left?  Just something to do.  There’s a lot of that in motorsports these days.

Peace.

Jeff GluckNASCAR Insider Jeff Gluck, JeffGluck.com, always brings the heat when he comes into The Freak Nation and Sunday night was no different. We talked about NASCAR future with television ratings falling, any changes in the future to meet the demand for new fans, and whether or not NASCAR might be sold in the near future. Gluck opened our eyes on what’s happening in the NASCAR paddock. Listen…

Darren Law25 Hours of Thunderhill Winner Darren Law, Flying Lizard Motorsports, came into The Freak Nation before getting on an airplane after the race. Law is one of the owners at Flying Lizard so he knows what’s happening with a sportsman race that professional teams find important. And how did Flying Lizard overcome broken axles and other problems to get the team’s fourth straight win at Thunderhill. Listen…