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JohnForce16-time NHRA Funny Car Champion John Force is always welcome in The Freak Nation so Sunday night was a pleasure for The Freaks.  Only this time Force was talking about $600,000 raised for STEM education at Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale. Wait’ll you hear John talk about who won his special edition Chevrolet CoPo Camaro sold at Barrett-Jackson Saturday.  We’re talking about billionaires, with a B!  John is always fun!  Listen…

Kyle Larson2020 Chili Bowl Winner Kyle Larson on winning the world’s biggest Midget race and getting no sleep when it was done. Larson has wanted this win for 13 years but Saturday night was the culmination of that long chase. Kyle has had enormous success in NASCAR Cup racing but wait’ll oyu hear how he feels about the importance of winning the legendary Chili Bowl. Listen…

Justin HillSupercross rider Justin Hill is back in the Freak Nation talking about his music and a recording session in the Seattle area. Hill is one of the top Supercross riders in the world but he spends a few minutes talking with The Freaks about London Bridge Studios and Pearl Jam’s Pearl Jam 10. Talk about a fly on the wall! Then there’s Soundgarden. It’ll take a few minutes to get back to Supercross. Listen…

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

MoneyMany in racing drool over the possibility of manufacturer money in the sport.

But manufacturer’s deep, deep pockets bring deep, deep danger. I say constantly that car makers’ first priority is selling cars and not winning races. They’re all in when racing meets that need. They’re not when it doesn’t.

We see that now in IMSA with Chip Ganassi Racing. The Ganassi garage has been one of IMSA’s most successful operations. That includes six overall wins in the Rolex 24 and two additional class wins with Ford in 2017 and 18.

But Ford’s four-year program ended in October and efforts to partner with a privateer team have failed where Ganassi’s concerned. We’re told Ganassi packed up everything and moved on in recent days.

We might see them back in two years when new rules take effect.

Ford’s commitment to its own future was evident in 2018 when it announced billions for hybrids and electrification in its showrooms. The Freaks were told no racing programs would be affected. How’s that working out now?

Peace.

Robin MillerNBC Motorsports Analyst Robin Miller hasn’t been in The Freak Nation in a while. He’s been missed during that time. Miller brought insight and headlines with him Sunday night including a popular driver who might end up in the broadcast booth instead of a racing cockpit this season. He also dropped a couple names who might be writing checks in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway makeover along with Roger Penske. Listen…

Tyler Courtney2019 USAC Midget Champion Tyler Courtney came into the Freak Nation Sunday with his own brand of headlines and good racing news. Courtney will be in Tulsa this week for the 2020 edition of the legendary Chili Bowl Nationals. It’ll be the warmup to his season defending his Midget Racing title, an effort that might include 90+ races this season. Listen…

Chris JacobsTelevision Host Chris Jacobs of Overhaulin’ and Motor Trend TV fame returned to the Freak Nation Sunday night. He once sat in with The Freaks so, you might say once a Freak always a Freak. Jacobs will be hosting part of the Barrett Jackson Auction shows in Scottsdale this week. He’ll be reporting on dream cars, maybe even his own. Listen…

Drew DollarARCA Driver Drew Dollar came into The Freak Nation Sunday night as he revs up for his first season with the powerful Venturini Motorsports team in the ARCA series.  He’ll be on General Tires this season as he learns to run on dirt, short tracks, restrictor plate super speedways and high banked ovals all over America.  Dollar knows he’ll be in the best equipment every race.  Listen…

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

The death of former NBA Commissioner David Stern brought back memories during our break.

David Stern

In the mid-80s I was doing a daily TV show called The Business of Sports. Stern and I talked during a five-part interview and later about an economic forecasting model I’d created.

The NBA was looking at expanding into several markets like Miami and Minneapolis. My model would have forecast success in those markets.

We had several phone calls but Stern came to this: “I like your presentation but I just can’t justify paying you fifty thousand dollars when I’ve already paid someone $150,000 to tell me the same thing.”

The point is this: Stern listened to out of the box ideas. That’s why the NBA exploded worldwide under his leadership.

Racing executive could learn from listening. When fans scream weekly by staying away from races and TVs you have to wonder about executives who won’t listen to those screams.

Happy New Year. Peace.

Jimmie JohnsonJimmy Johnson this year announced that 2020 will be his last after which he plans on racing into retirement with seven NASCAR Cup titles in his quiver. Five of those titles came consecutively from 2006-2010. He is tied with Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt for titles and no one has won more. Johnson is a legend in racing and in The Freak Nation. He always learn something when he comes to visit. Listen…