One of the most contentious issues for fans this season has been the debate over iffy debris cautions that bunch up the field for the show.
On Friday night, Denny Hamlin – who has been outspoken on the issue – asked fans for their opinions on Twitter. I suggested Hamlin's results were skewed, and it ultimately resulted in a brief back-and-forth via tweets.
A couple of you asked for a recap, so here it is.
@dennyhamlin: Truthfully I don't think It matters to the fans who wins the race as long as its a good "show". Even if it comes as the expense of competition@dennyhamlin: I'm listening to your comments.. Ok if ur fav driver is out of contention and leader is on his way to winning with 10 to go. Would u like to see nascar tighten it up or let the best car win? Please reply.@dennyhamlin: ok too many reply's to give a true count but its about 80% let it go 20% tighten it up.. thanks for the info. i was courious what u thought
@jeff_gluck: @dennyhamlin Personally I don't think they're not all being honest w/you or themselves. When the leader is running away fans BEG for caution@jeff_gluck: @dennyhamlin And btw, I say "Tighten it up." I want to see an exciting finish...if cars get torn up, it just adds drama.@jeff_gluck: OK, here's the feeling I get from most of you: At the end of the race you would love love love to see a caution...as long as it's legit.
@dennyhamlin: @jeff_gluck big difference in legit and not.. im not saying dont throw a caution when a guy is in the way.. come on dude..
@dennyhamlin: @jeff_gluck sounds like your the type of fan that watches for the crashes...
@dennyhamlin: @jeff_gluck i mean when a guy is in the wall.. and of course people wanna see a caution. Not a fake one tho.
@dennyhamlin: @jeff_gluck AND. fyi that debris caution caused over 500k in damage to 10 wrecked racecars at the end of that race. no big deal huh?
Hamlin makes some good points, but obviously we're coming from different angles on this. I don't think the fans really care about how much money it costs to fix race cars; the dollar amount that matters to them is the value for their ticket.
Clearly, though, Hamlin is right about the finishes being too contrived. I admit I'm probably wrong about that, but I still think these late debris cautions have done more good than harm.
As Hamlin himself said at Michigan: Without the debris cautions, we'd be talking about boring racing. And that's not what NASCAR needs right now.