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Revved Up! Readers React to Week's Biggest Racing News, Nov. 3 Edition – Autoweek

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Ross Chastain, Tony Stewart, Red Bull, and Lewis Hamilton rile up the readers this week.
What a week of racing news … and what a week of feedback from Autoweek readers, with well over 1000 comments both online as well as on Facebook and other forms of social media.

Let’s look at some of the biggest stories of the past week and some of the best comments, as well.
Or as we like to say here, let’s get REVVED UP!

adw55: Well, it’s better than wrecking somebody out, or intentionally slowing down to your teammate’s advantage….
jweb911: That’s some Lighting McQueen + Cole Trickle with a little Ricky Bobby mixed in there.
sal8911: Undoubtedly the most incredible move in NASCAR racing history.
lovingnascar9: 🤔 Umm, Kyle Larson, didn’t we see that same sort of move at the Charlotte Roval a few years back? 🤨 How soon we forget.
Motionman: Who says that playing video games is a bad thing? LOL
JB: What Chastain did was incredible and admirable, but it was NOT the first time something like this has been done in racing. Kyle Larson has been known for riding the wall in countless races. He just never achieved what Chastain did (make the playoffs with that move). I agree with “Motionman” that playing video games is NOT a bad thing. And “jweb911,” I couldn’t have said it better. But I also would have added Jean Girard LOL.

Motionman: Age old racing adage – ‘it ain’t cheating if you don’t get caught’!! Well, guess what, Red Bull got caught!! So stop the whining and play by the rules.
Godug: It is interesting that, assuming there were ambiguities in the regulations, only Red Bull had difficulty understanding and executing in accordance with what was written.
rst3482: Horner is a whiner. They got caught cheating and should have been penalized more severely. They should have had the drivers title taken away and had their 2nd place constructors position vacated. Disgraceful.
• Overpar: It’s RB’s time in the box. Although competition this year in places 2-10 have held my interest more than past years, RB seems to me the arrogant team with Horner, and especially Marko, who never shuts up. Should we care that they got caught? Yes, but trying to figure out FIA and F1’s rules and penalties requires an advanced degree in Boolean logic.
JB: Red Bull indeed got caught breaking the rules. However, I am not like many readers who are pointing the finger only at RB. On the contrary, I would bet dollars to donuts that every F1 team has bent the rules, if not outright broke them, numerous times this season. To paraphrase how “Motionman” put it so aptly, RB was the one that got caught. That being said, I don’t have a knock solely against RB. On the contrary. But I do think every other F1 team better be wiser—or at least cover up their own cheating a lot better—because RB is NOT going to be the only team F1 catches and penalizes. Frankly, the next team caught cheating may very well face an even greater and more egregious penalty—perhaps banning for a whole season? Or is that asking too much?
pro1323: I would say he acquitted himself quite well for the very first time down the track competitively. How many very first time racers make the finals and only miss winning by inches? Obviously it helped that he was given very competitive car.
mtg1011: Finally as far as I can remember, Tony Stewart accomplished a facet of racing which A.J. Foyt has not accomplished and more than likely, at his age will not try for that figment of racing. Do not be fooled by the gray starting to show up on Tony’s sideburns, as there is plenty of fuel left in his tank.
JB: I have to give credit where credit is due: “mtg1011” had the best answer of all readers/respondents this week. I couldn’t have said it any better. But I will also say this: If A.J. was 57 instead of 87, I would not have been surprised to see him climb behind the wheel of a dragster and challenge the straight line. Looking at Tony, I’m convinced that sooner rather than later, he is going to go full-time in NHRA (most likely Top Fuel rather than Funny Car) for two reasons: 1) He’s a cinch to replace John Force as drag racing’s most popular driver once Force retires (if he EVER retires!), and 2) I keep hearing rumors that Tony and Marcus Smith (son of the late Bruton Smith) may merge thoughts, ideas, and wallets to buy NHRA in the next year or two. And if that happens, it will be the absolute best thing that ever happened to the NHRA, an organization that is well past its prime and needs some major new blood—not to mention a hefty infusion of cash. Put it on your calendar: If it happens, you read it here first!
pdr8188: Ever since Sky Sports took over the broadcast of F1, replacing Hobbs, Diffey, Matchett, Varsha, de Cadenet, and Redman, the quality and depth of F1 broadcasting has declined to nothing more than a grossly biased, childish brood of fanboys who poorly speculate about the intricacies of the events and gush over their favorites, making viewing far less pleasurable, and lack any reasonable insight or enlightenment. They are, for their part, a significant component of F1’s failure to maintain and draw new audiences.
RickyG: Gang…F1 TV is the answer. Yup not free but the announcers are people like Will Buxton, no one shouts at you, well delivered.
har2838: After a weekend of listening to James Hinchcliffe talk and talk and talk and never come up for air, Sky commentators will definitely do for me…. But… I would love to hear some Hobbs, Duffey, Redman, Brundal, Croft and others! They understood the craft and didn’t feel the need to spend every second “teaching” all they “know”. A trait of most all American commentators that really leaves me feeling I’d be better off just turning it off. Sky is not all bad but I do hope that this will help remind…. Keep YOUR personal bias to yourself!
jaxter: I must be missing something. I also have been watching F1 since Monaco ’61 but have enjoyed the Sky broadcasts (except the last two with Danica), as they actually have some interesting additional talent like Jenson, Nico, Damon, Karun and others. As for British bias, it is a British sport.
JB: I agree with “har2838” in that I also miss guys like Varsha, Diffey, Matchett, de Cadenet and Redman. To be fair, Sky Sports does a great job of televising the sport. But at the same time, too many of their announcers are way too over-the-top. They make the most minor and mundane action both on and off the track sound earth-shattering, as if F1 is about to blow up. That’s false announcing, in my mind. I’d love to have Diffey come back (and who knows, he very well may do soon, if some of the rumors about NBC and IndyCar I’m hearing are true). He knows how to call a race the right way. And “RickyG,” I agree with you about Will Buxton: a true gentleman and great announcer. Just Will alone is worth paying for F1 TV.
edw8632: Next season I will not spend a dime with any of Ty Gibbs Sponsors. Not a dime!
cla2988: List his sponsors so we know who NOT to buy from and let it be known why!
Sunnyslope: One day there will be a moment when TG (Ty Gibbs) has an awakening, maybe a rude awakening – hope we get to see it.
i_text_alone: Next week at Phoenix.
• oba3414: As Larry Mac so eloquently put it… “he’ll fit right in that 18 car next year…” The kid is a punk. He would have made the playoffs anyways, right, yet bumped, no wait – punted, his teammate out of the running. If I was the car owner…. but then I’m not.
JB: I have the greatest amount of respect for Joe Gibbs as a team owner, coach, mentor, and leader. But I’m sorry, he made one of the biggest mistakes of his life when he let Kyle Busch go in favor of Ty. So what if he is Joe’s grandson, he does not have the maturity nor the experience to replace Kyle in any way, shape, or form. I’m really surprised as I would have thought Joe would be the first person to say Ty needed at least another year or two of seasoning in Xfinity. But at the same time, I also am looking at JGR’s long game: Hamlin and Truex are going to be gone in the next year or two, and the organization will begin a long rebuilding program with Christopher Bell and Ty Gibbs. Frankly, I can easily see JGR have several unproductive seasons like Jack Roush’s organization has had.
NREsq: That’s what happens when you cheat. P.S. Your mother could win in that car.
sft1974: This may hurt your sensitive ears but I can tell you with strong confidence that every single F1 team cheats. What constitutes a ‘cheat’ will vary from team to team, but the job of the aerodynamicists and engineers in any racing series is to push the limits to the degree that they can and not get caught. Occasionally some are caught, and they have to pay for it. Racing has been this way (where money is involved) since racing began. And so it is in F1.
Jsievers: The best car and one of the best drivers make for an unbeatable combo. However, it’s nice to see Mercedes still so committed to making progress this late in the season. If things keep going the way they are, Mercedes may take second in the constructor’s championship away from the messed up Ferrari team. Who knows? A little luck and Hamilton may even get a win.
FranklinCain: Verstappen—like Hamilton, Senna, Schumacher and Vettel—is one of those rare drivers that comes along every so often and just has skills on another level. Bravo to Max for setting the new season record for wins—and the season is not yet over.
JB: To “NREsq,” the only mother who could drive like that—maybe—would be the Lil Old Lady from Pasadena! (And if some of you are too young and don’t get the reference, look it up on YouTube!) As for “Jsievers,” I totally agree. While Max has made this season a runaway, I am also encouraged to see the competition of the other drivers/manufacturers. It has made for an enjoyable season in my mind, even if you hate Max. And “FranklinCain,” I couldn’t have said it better. Bravissimo!

justbob: Alonso is driving well and is already 41. If Lewis feels up to it and is performing well, why not continue? Today’s drivers tend to have a regimen of fitness and generally taking care of themselves much better than the days of say, Niki Lauda and James Hunt battling it out for the title. Although it obviously will make it harder for young drivers to move up. But if a driver can still perform, why shouldn’t he race if market demand will support it. I think Lewis has earned the right to not be put out to pasture before his time.
rth5023: Agreed, no one wants Lewis “Put out to pasture,” he is superbly talented … AS A DRIVER, and that is what he should recognize, and confine his activities to, not political involvement! Or commenting on other’s driving, as he did at COTA, when he was warned for EXACTLY the same thing he was whining about with Verstappen!! “The pot calling the kettle black” Lewis?
dpa5727: I’m definitely not a big fan, but the F1 world is better with Hamilton. For now.
edj4674: Interesting. I have been a Hamilton fan since McLaren, when Alonso first showed me his true personality by holding up Lewis in a stacked pit stop to causing the Ferrari-McLaren scandal. I have often been puzzled by his dress, hair, jewelry and crusades (perhaps my being 78 factors in), but he always thrilled in his driving. When he was cheated in the championship last year, something broke in my love for F1. For the first time in 55 years, when I raced and could not wait for the next race I am somewhat ambivalent. Sadly I often fast-forward the practices. It is an empty feeling but hopefully Mercedes will return next year, especially with Red Bull getting a penalty. In my mind it should have been loss of the title but heck, no one called from the FIA and asked my opinion.
cim9353: Don’t quit Lewis… who will the haters hate once you are gone?
JB: This story, in my mind, had the best and most well-rounded amount of reader replies of any story this past week. I agree that Lewis has another 2-3 years still in him. But if he feels he can’t be competitive as he once was, or if he feels he’d be wasting his time if he can’t earn at least one more championship, then yes, he has the guts to walk away and do something else. But at the same time, wouldn’t you love to see Lewis still involved in the sport in a team leader/ownership position? How about this for a wild idea: Lewis retires as a driver and joins forces with Michael Andretti to buy into or form a new F1 team in, say, 2024 or 2025? And if that were to happen, maybe Lewis could stick around for one more season as a driver/owner. He may not finish higher than sixth or seventh in the final standings, but it would be a great thing to watch him!
Follow Autoweek contributor Jerry Bonkowski on Twitter @JerryBonkowski

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