The Illusion at Le Mans

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

Sports IllusionWay back in the middle ‘80s, when dinosaurs roamed the Earth, I read a wonderful book “Sports Illusion, Sports Reality” by Leonard Koppett.

He rightly argued that fan interest waned and even disappeared unless promoters created the illusion that it mattered who won and lost the contest. I always likened it to pro basketball. The Globetrotters and Lakers have the same skill sets but it matters who wins and loses Lakers games. Globetrotters? Not so much.

I consider myself a sports car racing fan but I had the same feelings about this weekend’s 24 Hours of Le Mans. Normally it’s a rite of summer for me watching Le Mans even throughout the night on television.

But this year the production waned and the announcers couldn’t make the outcome matter to me. Toyota winning its third straight race wasn’t as impressive as the Audi run of things in the early 2000s. Competition was much stiffer then but Audi started a run winning 13 of 15 races.

Maybe it was a different sensibility this year. Some people like parades. Maybe next year get Macy’s to string up balloons.

Peace.

September 20, 2020

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