Austin Dillon’s win on Sunday at Texas was great for NASCAR from a parity standpoint. Coming off the heels of Cole Custer’s first career win last weekend at Kentucky the best thing for NASCAR was another non-traditional winner.
Dillon’s third career win came at the behest of a fantastic pit call (shoutout Pit Rho) that put he and teammate Tyler Reddick 1-2 late in the race. A caution caused by a driver who couldn’t get out of his “Rookie” license on iRacing changed the outcome of the race and allowed RCR to make this call.
Austin Dillon didn’t have the best car on Sunday. He didn’t have one of the 7 or 8 best cars, his average running position was 14th. However, he still found his way to the checkered flag first, much like his other two wins luck and strategy were on his side. It doesn’t matter how you get to the flag first, a win is a win.
The best car doesn’t always win in NASCAR, in fact, more often than not it doesn’t win. That exploits a bigger problem in NASCAR.
The NA18D Package & Goodyear Are Killing Races
When Quin Houff decided to pit from the third lane late in Sunday’s race he not only destroyed his car, ruined Matt DiBenedetto’s race he also trapped the dominating driver of the day, Ryan Blaney a lap down.
Blaney took the wave around along with others but still had to line up around 12th. With limited laps, tires that don’t wear, a poorly prepped track, and the NA18D package, Blaney’s chances of winning were toast.
Sunday’s race once again saw cars struggle to pass one another. The high downforce, low horsepower package allows drivers to run nearly full throttle the entire lap. Without throttle management it makes it increasingly harder to pass. Throw in the fact Goodyear brought the hardest tires in their arsenal to Texas and the opportunity to pass went right out the window. The tires could last hundreds of laps if they needed to. When teams pit and don’t take tire after a full fuel run, there’s a problem.
Austin Dillon had no business winning that race on speed. He ran 14th most of the day. When you get out front late in a race with clean air on a track that for the most part had one dominant groove you’re almost guaranteed to win. That’s not racing.
RCR played strategy perfectly to give themselves a 1-2. NASCAR can celebrate the “parity” of this win but is this the “racing” fans want?
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