2011-05-19 / Entertainment

Racing commentary

Where are the top Nationwide and Truck Series’ drivers? There really isn’t any, because 16 of the 17 races run this season have been won by Cup regulars.

This is a problem for NASCAR, and they know it.

Starting with the 2011 season, a driver had to declare which division they were going to run for the title in. The reasoning behind that rule was to prevent Cup drivers from participating in large numbers in the lower Nationwide and Truck Series’.

But so far, it hasn’t happened.

Kyle Busch and Carl Edwards have practically dominated the two classes.

Track owners like for the Cup regulars to enter one of these lower series because it helps put fans in the stands. A Truck race ticket can be bought for about one-third of what one would cost for a Cup race.

While ticket sales are important, it is also imperative that younger drivers get the opportunity to compete.

As it stands now, most drivers trying to break into either the Nationwide or Truck series are finding it extremely difficult.

From where I stand, if NASCAR doesn’t make another rule limiting Cup driver participation, their driver development program is going to slide downhill.

Weekend racing: It will be Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte for Sprint Cup and Truck teams. The Cup race is a non-points event, while the Trucks will be running for points. The Nationwide teams are at Newton, Iowa, for a Sunday race.

Friday, May 20, Camping World Trucks, race 7 of 24, starting time: 8 p.m.; TV: Speed. Saturday, May 21, Sprint Cup All-Star race, non-points, starting time: 7 p.m.; TV: Speed. Sunday, May 22, Nationwide Iowa 250, race 12 of 34, starting time: 2 p.m.; TV: ABC.

Racing trivia question: Jeff Burton drives the No. 31 Richard Childress Chevrolet. Who did he drive for before RCR?

Last week’s question: How many Cup teams does Hendrick Motorsports have? Answer. Four. They are Jimmie Johnson (48), Jeff Gordon (24), Dale Earnhardt Jr.(88), and Mark Martin (5).

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