Tony on young drivers

aunty dive

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“Drivers who haven’t made it to the big time yet, tend to stay at 25, for several years. They lie about their age to make themselves more appealing to the professional team owners.”

Impersonating a journalist.

Total BS.
 

2 Sweet

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Tony is still as hypocritical as ever.

“Drivers who haven’t made it to the big time yet, tend to stay at 25, for several years. They lie about their age to make themselves more appealing to the professional team owners.”

Impersonating a journalist.

Total BS.
Yeah, that's one of the dumbest things I've ever read.
 

Michfan

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Tony is still as hypocritical as ever.



Yeah, that's one of the dumbest things I've ever read.
Why is it dumb? He's making a comment about how guys are basically afraid to say they are 27 or 28 because teams feel that is too old. I mean this was literally going on with Preece last year. He was in victory lane but owners were like "****, I don't know, he's 27, that might be too old"
 

2 Sweet

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Why is it dumb? He's making a comment about how guys are basically afraid to say they are 27 or 28 because teams feel that is too old. I mean this was literally going on with Preece last year. He was in victory lane but owners were like "sh!t, I don't know, he's 27, that might be too old"
Nobody is actually lying about their age, because clearly nobody would get away with it. This isn't junior baseball in the Dominican Republic.
 

Johali

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He's right on the money. There's ride buying kids that can't skip a day at school without a note from mommy getting rides that they don't deserve. And some that have been through the ranks not getting a shot and running in crap cars/trucks if at all. The two listed below among many others.

Matt DiBenedetto 28 years old.
Ross Chastain 26 years old.
 

StandOnIt

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I really do see Tony's point, there really are youngsters coming up that only know how to sit in the seat and drive, but by the same token when Tony was new I'm sure some of the old timers thought the same thing about some younger drivers in their series. Guys like William Byron is a good example of what Tony is talking about. Documented he has only been racing for a short time.
 

aunty dive

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Why is it dumb? He's making a comment about how guys are basically afraid to say they are 27 or 28 because teams feel that is too old. I mean this was literally going on with Preece last year. He was in victory lane but owners were like "sh!t, I don't know, he's 27, that might be too old"
It's dumb because nobody is lying about how old they are when they apply for a license.

Most of these young people have to wait until they're old enough to get one and produce a birth certificate in order to do so. Stewart didn't say that ... the "journalist" made it up to add drama to his article. Nonsense.
 

jaqua19

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I think the reason the "youth movement" isn't working is because they haven't taken over the sport like Gordon did, like the current vets did.

The reason for that is that the talent pool from the 1999-2006 class is the best the sport has ever seen.

Dale Jr, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Greg Biffle, Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne all were competitive and won atleast one race (minus) Kahne their rookie year. These guys have had better rookie seasons and starts to their cup careers than the Larsons, Blaneys, Elliot's Jones of the world.

And that's not even mentioning Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson, Carl Edwards and Denny Hamlin who were all contenders and winners their rookie seasons.

This 6-7 year burst of young talent was so good that they were out performing and out winning vets and "legends" of the 90s right from the get go.

The best drivers in NASCAR today are the ones who remain from that class, and the drivers who came to cup during the transition (Brad K, Joey L). The young guys today are just starting to now show that they are just as good of race car drivers (not just talent). But the vets of today are vastly superior to the vets of the 90s. I think these young guys today are held to the standard these 99-06 drivers were, and they can't cut it because they simply aren't as good as that crop of drivers when they began their cup career.

So as a result, they are forced. Stewart and Johnson were 27 when they made their cup debuts. Edwards 24. Hamlin around 24. Chase is finally coming into his own as a star driver now. What is he...24? In his 4th season. Would you say rookie Carl Edwards was better than Chase is right now? Exactly. Of course he was. Young talent today is very inexperienced, and they don't have the raw talent the rookies of a decade or so ago had to make up for experience


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clarkfn2284

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Lots of kicking and screaming going on here. You have younger guys that are not quite where the drivers of Tony's generation were in their talent ladder because there is a desire from every team, organization, sponsor, sanctioning body to appeal to the 18-35 year old demo. 40+ year old Jimmie Johnson does not appeal to the majority of 30 year old fans. Most of his sustained success would have come when those 30 year olds were in their early 20s. People want to relate to people of their ilk. Age, race, etc. It's a natural progression that comes with the sport evolving from the Southern roots sport that NASCAR is attempting to get away from.

These younger drivers are being moved through the ranks at a faster pace than ever before because of the need to attract money and interest in that demo. From that comes a very steep learning curve once they become a small fish in a large pond. These guys can dominate in K&N and ARCA when they show up in top equipment and only face 3 or 4 guys that are close to their talent level. Once you get to CUP where the talent level is more experienced and the gap of equipment and talent is closed it then begins the steep learning curve.

I have always had an issue with anyone complaining about a younger driver "buying a ride". If the kid has talent, what does it matter? In fact, if it's not your car to put him/her in, what does it matter? You want Ross Chastain to have a ride? Go fund a team. Otherwise, shut up about it. You are trying to tell someone what to do with their money and their race team. If you don't invest in the team and have a monetary interest in it, then move along.

What is the difference between Chase Elliott and a driver who "buys a ride"? Take all talent out of it. Is anyone here complaining that Chase never needed to be talented to have a ride in any level he wanted? Obviously if the talent isn't there you will have a harder time finding good rides, but let's not sit here and act like Chase, Jr, Kyle Petty etc didn't have a fast track to a ride. For every talented second or third generation driver that has talent there is a Steven Wallace who isn't as talented that has a road to the premier divisions.
 

Formerjackman

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Lots of kicking and screaming going on here. You have younger guys that are not quite where the drivers of Tony's generation were in their talent ladder because there is a desire from every team, organization, sponsor, sanctioning body to appeal to the 18-35 year old demo. 40+ year old Jimmie Johnson does not appeal to the majority of 30 year old fans. Most of his sustained success would have come when those 30 year olds were in their early 20s. People want to relate to people of their ilk. Age, race, etc. It's a natural progression that comes with the sport evolving from the Southern roots sport that NASCAR is attempting to get away from.

These younger drivers are being moved through the ranks at a faster pace than ever before because of the need to attract money and interest in that demo. From that comes a very steep learning curve once they become a small fish in a large pond. These guys can dominate in K&N and ARCA when they show up in top equipment and only face 3 or 4 guys that are close to their talent level. Once you get to CUP where the talent level is more experienced and the gap of equipment and talent is closed it then begins the steep learning curve.

I have always had an issue with anyone complaining about a younger driver "buying a ride". If the kid has talent, what does it matter? In fact, if it's not your car to put him/her in, what does it matter? You want Ross Chastain to have a ride? Go fund a team. Otherwise, shut up about it. You are trying to tell someone what to do with their money and their race team. If you don't invest in the team and have a monetary interest in it, then move along.

What is the difference between Chase Elliott and a driver who "buys a ride"? Take all talent out of it. Is anyone here complaining that Chase never needed to be talented to have a ride in any level he wanted? Obviously if the talent isn't there you will have a harder time finding good rides, but let's not sit here and act like Chase, Jr, Kyle Petty etc didn't have a fast track to a ride. For every talented second or third generation driver that has talent there is a Steven Wallace who isn't as talented that has a road to the premier divisions.
Well, I kind of resent the idea of Chase being a ride buyer. Yes, his dad could afford to put him in some good late model equipment, but beyond that, every step was built on merit. The kid is a technicality short of winning the Snowball Derby three times before the age of 19. Chase got the attention of Rick Hendrick because he won races, not because he brought sponsorship. In fact the lack of a sponsor almost killed the whole deal. Without NAPA stepping up, Chase might have gone the way of Jeb Burton or any of about fifty different former driver's sons who couldn't find enough backing to stay in the game. Truthfully, a lot of these are caught in a catch-22. Nobody want to sponsor you unless you are hooked up with a solid team, and solid teams don't want you unless you can bring money.
 

Zerkfitting

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The young drivers have always annoyed the veterans. I'm pretty sure veterans like Tony did the same thing when they were young drivers. Plus each generation of drivers follow a different path due to the changing nature of the sport. It is just a mater of time for today's young drivers to become veterans and begin to share Tony's point of view.
 

clarkfn2284

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Well, I kind of resent the idea of Chase being a ride buyer. Yes, his dad could afford to put him in some good late model equipment, but beyond that, every step was built on merit. The kid is a technicality short of winning the Snowball Derby three times before the age of 19. Chase got the attention of Rick Hendrick because he won races, not because he brought sponsorship. In fact the lack of a sponsor almost killed the whole deal. Without NAPA stepping up, Chase might have gone the way of Jeb Burton or any of about fifty different former driver's sons who couldn't find enough backing to stay in the game. Truthfully, a lot of these are caught in a catch-22. Nobody want to sponsor you unless you are hooked up with a solid team, and solid teams don't want you unless you can bring money.
The entire comparison is not based on talent which is why I made the statement about removing talent all together and yet somehow, you missed that. It is more than safe to say that Chase, no matter what his talent level was, had an inside track to the higher levels of racing in comparison to Joe Nobody who didn't have any connection to the sport. Bill Elliott need make one phone call and a door would be opened by a team owner to at least have a conversation. This is no different than a kid whose parents buy a ride. There is nothing wrong with using the leverage you have afforded to you to better you odds at being successful or reaching a goal. That was the point.
 

StandOnIt

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The young drivers have always annoyed the veterans. I'm pretty sure veterans like Tony did the same thing when they were young drivers. Plus each generation of drivers follow a different path due to the changing nature of the sport. It is just a mater of time for today's young drivers to become veterans and begin to share Tony's point of view.
Tony came to Nascar at 28 one of the oldest to do so. And he came up old school before that. I get what he is saying, but his path is one that not many are going to travel. Many popular drivers before Gordon came into the series even younger than he.
 

Formerjackman

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The entire comparison is not based on talent which is why I made the statement about removing talent all together and yet somehow, you missed that. It is more than safe to say that Chase, no matter what his talent level was, had an inside track to the higher levels of racing in comparison to Joe Nobody who didn't have any connection to the sport. Bill Elliott need make one phone call and a door would be opened by a team owner to at least have a conversation. This is no different than a kid whose parents buy a ride. There is nothing wrong with using the leverage you have afforded to you to better you odds at being successful or reaching a goal. That was the point.

You can makes all of the calls you want, doesn't mean anybody is going to listen. Ford Motor Company didn't.
 

jaqua19

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Lots of kicking and screaming going on here. You have younger guys that are not quite where the drivers of Tony's generation were in their talent ladder because there is a desire from every team, organization, sponsor, sanctioning body to appeal to the 18-35 year old demo. 40+ year old Jimmie Johnson does not appeal to the majority of 30 year old fans. Most of his sustained success would have come when those 30 year olds were in their early 20s. People want to relate to people of their ilk. Age, race, etc. It's a natural progression that comes with the sport evolving from the Southern roots sport that NASCAR is attempting to get away from.

These younger drivers are being moved through the ranks at a faster pace than ever before because of the need to attract money and interest in that demo. From that comes a very steep learning curve once they become a small fish in a large pond. These guys can dominate in K&N and ARCA when they show up in top equipment and only face 3 or 4 guys that are close to their talent level. Once you get to CUP where the talent level is more experienced and the gap of equipment and talent is closed it then begins the steep learning curve.

I have always had an issue with anyone complaining about a younger driver "buying a ride". If the kid has talent, what does it matter? In fact, if it's not your car to put him/her in, what does it matter? You want Ross Chastain to have a ride? Go fund a team. Otherwise, shut up about it. You are trying to tell someone what to do with their money and their race team. If you don't invest in the team and have a monetary interest in it, then move along.

What is the difference between Chase Elliott and a driver who "buys a ride"? Take all talent out of it. Is anyone here complaining that Chase never needed to be talented to have a ride in any level he wanted? Obviously if the talent isn't there you will have a harder time finding good rides, but let's not sit here and act like Chase, Jr, Kyle Petty etc didn't have a fast track to a ride. For every talented second or third generation driver that has talent there is a Steven Wallace who isn't as talented that has a road to the premier divisions.
Fantastic post.

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Mispeedway15

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I think the reason the "youth movement" isn't working is because they haven't taken over the sport like Gordon did, like the current vets did.

The reason for that is that the talent pool from the 1999-2006 class is the best the sport has ever seen.

Dale Jr, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Greg Biffle, Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne all were competitive and won atleast one race (minus) Kahne their rookie year. These guys have had better rookie seasons and starts to their cup careers than the Larsons, Blaneys, Elliot's Jones of the world.

And that's not even mentioning Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson, Carl Edwards and Denny Hamlin who were all contenders and winners their rookie seasons.

This 6-7 year burst of young talent was so good that they were out performing and out winning vets and "legends" of the 90s right from the get go.

The best drivers in NASCAR today are the ones who remain from that class, and the drivers who came to cup during the transition (Brad K, Joey L). The young guys today are just starting to now show that they are just as good of race car drivers (not just talent). But the vets of today are vastly superior to the vets of the 90s. I think these young guys today are held to the standard these 99-06 drivers were, and they can't cut it because they simply aren't as good as that crop of drivers when they began their cup career.

So as a result, they are forced. Stewart and Johnson were 27 when they made their cup debuts. Edwards 24. Hamlin around 24. Chase is finally coming into his own as a star driver now. What is he...24? In his 4th season. Would you say rookie Carl Edwards was better than Chase is right now? Exactly. Of course he was. Young talent today is very inexperienced, and they don't have the raw talent the rookies of a decade or so ago had to make up for experience


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Dude you literally described nascars problem. The talent level just simply isn’t what it was and it lacks a dominant star. You had some damn big dogs back in the late 90s early 2000s
 

StandOnIt

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Racing in Nascar is tons more complicated than it was back in the day. I think most of the posters are so jaded they don't realize that there are stars in Nascar today right now. Anybody remember Elliott's reception at the airport when he won Watkins Glenn last year, or the siren going off in Dawsonville? The police Escort DiBenideto got for a good finish, the crowds lining the streets in Las Vegas for the awards ceremony, or the hauler parades? I don't think Nascar has a problem, I think many of the so called fans do.
 

hidesert cowboy

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here is what tony is meaning to say!!! and its exactly correct. The problem is these guys come into the sport and they have NO story. I mean who wants to hear the story of austin dillon and paul menard having rich dads? Chase elliott kinda has a story but if it wasn't for his dad's fame? The story is what made these guys famous and made us fans of them. Look at carl edwards, guy handed out business cards saying essentially need driver, will travel. Matt kenseth, his story goes back to teaming up with robby reiser in the busch series. Tony of course had a story of where he came from that was interesting. Jeff gordan same thing. Its the drivers story and character that makes race fans.
 

Speedbowl14

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there is a desire from every team, organization, sponsor, sanctioning body to appeal to the 18-35 year old demo. 40+ year old Jimmie Johnson does not appeal to the majority of 30 year old fans. Most of his sustained success would have come when those 30 year olds were in their early 20s. People want to relate to people of their ilk. Age, race, etc. It's a natural progression that comes with the sport evolving from the Southern roots sport that NASCAR is attempting to get away from.
.
This is absolutely hilarious. Fans root for drivers they relate to with demographics? I guess all of Dawsonville, Georgia is composed of 20-something-year old males. Dale Jr was popular because a lot of NASCAR fans have facial hair and liked his beard. This theory explains why Michael Waltrip was never very popular...not too many NASCAR fans are 6'4" like Mikey and thus they couldn't relate to him.

Who is @Johali supposed to cheer on? Morgan Shepard?

What about the few high schoolers on this board? I guess they can only watch the K&N guys cuz they're all in high school as well.
 

Speedbowl14

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Racing in Nascar is tons more complicated than it was back in the day. I think most of the posters are so jaded they don't realize that there are stars in Nascar today right now. Anybody remember Elliott's reception at the airport when he won Watkins Glenn last year, or the siren going off in Dawsonville? The police Escort DiBenideto got for a good finish, the crowds lining the streets in Las Vegas for the awards ceremony, or the hauler parades? I don't think Nascar has a problem, I think many of the so called fans do.
Yeah Chase is good and DiBenedetto certainly has a following...but the "stars" of NASCAR are the same guys from 10 years ago...Harvick, Turex, both Busch brothers, Hamlin, even JoLo and Keselowski have been around 10+ years now. The only new star of NASCAR in my opinion since 2009 is Chase Elliot...Larson almost got there but at this point I'm putting him on the "bust" list. To be fair, I think this lack of recent starpower has to do with the absolute recreation of Truex's career which I don't think ANYONE saw coming, and a lot of older guys not losing steam and pumping out wins year-after-year.

After going to Bristol last week the only young drivers I saw well-represented were Elliot (obviously), and Blaney.
 

Nitro Dude

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Is this intended to suggest that being Bill Elliott’s son didn’t open doors for the kid?
You have the same kind of thing going on in Hollywood. You have kids moving to California and working 2 or 3 jobs just so they can attend auditions hoping to be discovered by some top talent agent but never get discovered. But if you are the son or daughter of a top actor or actress your chances are much greater...life is not always fair.
 

Privateer

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Racing in Nascar is tons more complicated than it was back in the day. I think most of the posters are so jaded they don't realize that there are stars in Nascar today right now. Anybody remember Elliott's reception at the airport when he won Watkins Glenn last year, or the siren going off in Dawsonville? The police Escort DiBenideto got for a good finish, the crowds lining the streets in Las Vegas for the awards ceremony, or the hauler parades? I don't think Nascar has a problem, I think many of the so called fans do.
Small town near me had an escort with police cars and fire engines when their middle school soccer team came back from winning conference.

I hardly ever watch Xfinity because, besides a couple guys, it's all spoiled kids who never paid any dues.
I did roll my eyes when I looked at series points yesterday and Gray Gaulding was 13th.
 

JGR_20

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When this dude isn’t being hypocritical, he’s involved in questionable activity at dirt tracks. I don’t like him.
 
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