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

NASCAR brags that it’s Super Bowl, the Daytona 500, opens the season.

That pride, though, should be tempered with some embarrassment. The inexperienced shouldn’t be allowed to run in the biggest race of the year.

Monster NASCAR logoThere needs to be a commitment to upgrade the product even if it means reducing the size of the field. NASCAR’s current president Steve Phelps says he wants to improve the product. Let’s see if he will.

All this is the residue of today’s Daytona 500 where two inexperienced drivers triggered a major accident while trying to slow down for a pit stop with 42 laps to go in the race. The accident gathered, among others, one of the sport’s biggest stars and a threat to win today, Jimmie Johnson.

No other major league sport is so cavalier about their biggest event. You just can’t have something so important be determined by inexperienced participants.

Saying this is the way we’ve always done it just isn’t acceptable. Maybe I’m not supposed to understand.

Peace.

Carlos MenciaComedian Carlos Mencia returned to The Freak Nation this week as he continued his latest comedy tour. It’s always fun to have Mencia with The Freaks especially as he riffs on the L.A. Dodgers and Rams, his passion for baseball, taking his friends to a Lakers game, political correctness and reaching for the brown sugar. Mencia is always ready with a story that’ll leave you in stitches. Listen…

Travis BraunDisney Channel Producer Travis Braun has spent a lifetime talking with youne people, racers and his Dad’s Triumph Spitfire. He’s the brother of sports car champion driver Colin Braun but his latest headline is all for Travis. He’s become a producer for the Disney Channel. The programs he’s developing for Disney could solve a growing problem for motor racing promoters: putting young people back into cars and, maybe, becoming racing fans. Listen.

Colin Braun2015 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Prototype Challenge Champion Colin Braun was once the young upstart in racing but, at 30, he’s now a champion and able to talk about efforts to get more young people into the sport’s grandstands. Braun could also put himself into a new place, a Disney Channel project with his brother Travis who’s just becoming a producer with Disney. Listen…

Zach OsborneTwo-time 250 Supercross East Champion Zach Osborne busted his collarbone last fall just before the Supercross season opened in Anaheim in January.  The injury required surgery and four weeks of recovery time.  That recovery led to his 2019 season start in Dallas last weekend where he made his 450cc debut finishing 22nd after retiring on lap nine.  Osborne has lots of work to gt back to championship form but he talked about that work and the injuries that come without it.  Listen…

Harrison BurtonARCA Lucas Oil 200 Winner Harrison Burton got his first win at Daytona Speedway Saturday night on General Tires. Burton is the son of former NASCAR race winner Jeff Burton and nephew to Ward Burton. Harrison is only 18 but ran a smart race to get his victory. Usually 18 and smart are mutually exclusive but not with Harrison. In fact, most of the ARCA winners who’ve come into The Freak Nation are winners behind the microphone as well. It’s refreshing. Listen…

Ryan DungeyFour-time Supercross Champion Ryan Dungey came into the Freak Nation Sunday night to talk about his transition to retirement. He won his titles in 2012 and 2015-2017. When he left he was the best in the sport devoting his entire life to staying on top of the best. Now, though, it’s a challenge to change from two months off to all 12 months away from the sport. What’s that like? And who does he see on top of the heap now? Listen.

Graham RahalIndyCar Driver Graham Rahal has been coming into The Freak Nation for more than a decade. So when we talked with him Sunday night it was like talking with an old friend. Rahal was at pre-season testing at Weathertech Raceway, the old Laguna Seca, in Northern California. He’s eager to get the 2019 season underway with a new IndyCar series sponsor, new teams in the sport, and new excitement among IndyCar fans. He also had some comments about a favorite Freak idea, combining an IndyCar weekend with another sport like NHRA drag racing. Listen…

Jeremy PivenActor and producer Jeremy Piven, Ari Gold from the award-winning Entourage television show, is turning his attention to stand up comedy. Piven won a Golden Globe Award and three consecutive Emmy Award as Ari Gold. Now, though, he’s like to win some great laughs as a comedian. He’s touring the country now doing shows. It must be difficult, though, doing comedy when no one’s laughing in the studio to doing comedy in front of an audience where you wantlaughs every minute or so. Listen…

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

It’s disappointing to learn that the World Rally Championship has pushed hybrid and electric technology at least five years down the road.

Automakers say they were promised five years of stability with the current regulations first. I hope that’s not just something to table discussion. And what’s wrong with a demonstration class of five or ten cars?

Here in the U.S. Ford is leading the crossover to more hybrid and electric choices in the showroom. To make that step the product lineup will be cut and that makes sense. The marketplace is demanding the changes.

The World Endurance Championship and F1 have made the moves. I’m sure there is something that will crossover to rallying.

Rallycross is supposed to make the change soon. Ice racers already have an electric category. But racing with batteries in a circle is far different from sending them out into the woods for several hours. After all, that’s the way it’s done every morning going to work.

We can all agree that sitting around talking and meeting about it won’t get it into our driveways any quicker.

Peace.