It's about time NASCAR got consistent

BY Larry McReynolds • October 7, 2009

I am not shy in saying that over the years I have been an avid crusader for NASCAR to feature consistent start times for our races. I think it is also safe to say that I have been even more vocal about it since I became a broadcaster.

Let's face it, I am a sports fan. I love racing, football, baseball and golf. In the winter when I am home, on Sundays we can go to church, grab lunch and then promptly at 1 p.m. ET I can turn on NFL on FOX and there is a football game. It's Sunday after Sunday after Sunday. On top of that, you can count on another game starting at 4 p.m.

I also know when the Monday Night Football game will be on too. I am conditioned to it and I know what to expect.

On the racing side, that hasn't been the case. We have totally confused the race fans over the past several years. Heck some of our start times change from week to week. I think fans finally get fed up with that.

It's confusing enough to the fans that we have races on five different networks. Now don't even get me started about how practices and qualifying are spread out over everywhere. I am telling you, we have frustrated the living hell out of you fans with start times and variations of networks.

What's the point?

Time for a fix

Now that one problem has been solved, it's time to work on another. Darrell Waltrip has a few ideas on how to make the Chase for the Sprint Cup system better for drivers and fans alike.

I like the fact that we are finally going back to consistency. You know for years, even way back before the new television package, 1 p.m. ET used to always be our starting time.

And now it'll be that way again.

With NASCAR's announcement, it's our job to re-educate our fans about our consistent start times, be it on Sunday's (1 p.m. ET for east or central time zone races, 3 p.m. ET for west coast races) or Saturday night races (7:30 p.m. ET). This is going to help. For that matter it has to help.

I applaud NASCAR for recognizing this problem and addressing it.

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