Saturday, May 03, 2008

Uncovering Tom Bowles' "unnamed source"

On Rev'Jim's RantsnRaves, I have never claimed to be reporting news. Anything you read on here is based on my opinion, and that is as likely to come from my heart as it is from my brain. Still, when I mention something in the news, I am careful to attribute it to the source, complete with names. I am not a professional journalist, and I do not get paid for writing, so I hope and assume that people read my work for the purpose of entertainment, and that they find my opinion interesting.

A professional journalist, such as Tom Bowles for Sports Illustrated.com, can apparently present a supposition without naming sources. Last week Bowles published an article asserting that Tony Stewart would be leaving Joe Gibbs Racing at the end of this year to join Haas/CNC as a co-owner-driver, quoting "unnamed sources" so he wouldn't have to present proof. Even after more information came out that Stewart will not be leaving JGR at the end of this year, and that he was looking at several options before he decided what he was going to do after 2009, Bowles went on as if the Haas/CNC contract was already a done deal.

That article got such a wide and frenzied response that Bowles has decided to continue with the "unnamed source" theme, in his Friday "Inside NASCAR" assignment.

But he slipped up and left clues as to his "unnamed source" may be. Please feel free to set your sense of humor lose as I--tongue firmly in cheek--debunk some of the "points" in his article while exposing this source.

Theorem: The "unnamed source" is a fictitious character created from various quotes from various sources, including drivers, fans, crewmembers, and drinking buddies.

The first paragraph of the article begins with a phrase that could be attributed to anybody, fan, driver, etc, who has some connection to the sport, but ends with comments that lead us to believe that the source is likely a driver:

I love going to Richmond. It's a great race for the fans, and it's an enjoyable race for the drivers. It's a good short track; I like the fact that you can get side-by-side there. It's two wide, great racing all the way around, and it's always easy to get beside someone ... although it's really hard to complete the pass. That can be very frustrating, but that's just part of it. I think every track has its challenges; but even though it's great that we can run two-wide at Richmond all the way around, I still wouldn't want to race there every week. Even though I think that running four-wide at Talladega is great, I still wouldn't want to race there every race, either.


A little later, the source claims to have tested at Iowa and says what Rusty did in designing the track to be better than Richmond:

A great race track that I think they did a tremendous job with is the Iowa Speedway. Iowa is a better Richmond, in my mind. It's a little bit bigger, 7/8 of a mile, but it's short enough that you can get in there and you could race. We've been there testing, and I've run the second groove in a test; I know you could run it in a race.

What Rusty did with that race track, they took the best qualities of Richmond and then they fixed the worst qualities. One problem with Richmond ... one reason you get guys stuck side-by-side is turn three, and coming out of two, in particular, it gets so tight over there that the guy on the bottom -- is that the banking falls away so quick you can't complete the pass. When you get stuck side-by-side with someone, it's typically because the guy on the bottom doesn't have enough room to keep his speed. Well, they fixed that in Iowa. In Iowa, you come out of all turns with a little more banking, so you don't get loose, and I think they did a fabulous job with it.


This rules out Joey Lagano, who has raced at Iowa, but hasn't raced at Richmond, while the source has only tested at Iowa Speedway, but has raced at Richmond. Some names who fit that criteria, are Paul Menard, Dale Earnhardt, Jr, Martin Truex, Jr., and Steven Wallace. From the raving about Iowa and Rusty with no apparent prompting, and claiming that Iowa is better than Richmond, the clues are leaning toward Wallace.

"I don't know what Tony Stewart's doing; he hasn't told me yet."


That could be anybody. It is the most truthful statement Bowles has written in two weeks.

This next statement rules out Dale Earnhardt, Jr, and Martin Truex, Jr, because those two, at least, know about the exception when being forced below the line.

Kyle Busch should have been black flagged for his pass below the yellow line at Talladega. To me, it's a black and white rule. There's a very bright line going on the bottom of the race track, and if you pass somebody under it, it's very obvious that you did. NASCAR had said on many occasions that, "Gentlemen, this is a black and white rule. There is no gray area. There is no interpretation. If you go below the yellow line, you will be black flagged."


And, judging by the next statement, the "source" is apparently immature and has a predisposition against Kyle Busch, and seems to be making excuses for his own frequent wrecking:

And another thing; the only reason Kyle Busch hated Talladega [before Sunday] was because he wasn't any good. The only reason he hated it was because he always wrecked!


That comment could have just as well come from someone who has never raced in NASCAR. Add the next statement, which is something no driver who gets on the track wanting to compete with other drivers, would say about another driver, outside of a post incident "heat of the moment" rant.

Robby Gordon's going to be out of control at Richmond. It's really difficult to race around him. He's a great person off the race track, but he clearly loses his head when he gets in the race car. He's just a pain in the ass


That is one person's opinion. That person also claims that the Big One is no fault of Talladega, because people crash at every track. That leads us back to thinking the source is either Paul Menard or Steven Wallace, who crash at every track.

In order to narrow the identity of the "source" a little better, we should look at Wallace's post-race comments from Friday and compare them with the previous comments about other drivers:

"He’s just a little girl about it," Wallace continued. "I don’t know. I think it’s pretty bad when they call driver introductions and everybody in the grandstand boos you. He’s a sore loser."


If you noticed a similarity in the attitude, you are not alone.
But still, there is nothing conclusive here. The "source" could be a conglomerate of many people, or it could be Bowles' alternate personality. It could be Steve Wallace, or it could be Lauren Wallace, who is a fictitious character played by an actor.

I am tending toward Lauren.

4 comments:

Tim Zaegel said...

Rev ... you definitely have put a lot of thought into this one, that's for sure! lol

Anonymous said...

That also leaves out Steve Wallace as he has raced and won in Iowa... not just tested there.

But I do like your humor.. lol
Wallace should have got out and kicked that punks rearend last night!

RevJim said...

You're right, anon. I follow ARCA, I love it in fact, and I should have remembered that he won in Iowa.
How far would have that fight gone, I wonder. Kyle bumped Wallace to get ahead, which everybody knows is wrong in short track racing, you're just supposed to run in a nice single file for two hundred fifty laps. Wallace then rammed Busch's car after the checkered flag, then Kyle got mad and went to confront Wallace, then the fight got broken up and they went and said bad words about each other. If the fight had continued escalating, it could have gotten interesting.

Anonymous said...

That deal Friday night would have got worse had Kyle waited until Wallace was out the car.. instead of doing it with Wallace still in the car with the window net up... Kyle can wheel a car, but he's still a sissy.

And then for him to take out Jr like he did....maybe he should have come down on the track more like he said Steve should have?
I wonder if he made it home??? LOL