Haverlin’s Hot Take: Time for the Brian France era to end forever
Typically, I post my weekly opinion piece on Friday, but this one couldn’t wait.
By now, we’ve all heard the news, and we’re all disappointed, frustrated, and saddened by Brian France’s irresponsible behavior. I’m not even going to summarize what happened because it’d just be a waste of time.
In case you don’t know, here’s the story:
How low can it possibly get?
France, who lost his position of NASCAR CEO and Chairman on Monday, has completely lost any credibility he had as the head of a worldwide sport.
Not only is it a disappointment for everyone in the NASCAR industry, but it’s a poor reflection on NASCAR itself.
On Sunday, Chase Elliott, one of NASCAR’s most popular drivers, earned his first career victory and held off defending Cup Series champion Martin Truex Jr. to do it. The fans loved it, Hendrick Motorsports loved it, and even some media members probably liked it. The triumph was long overdue, and it seemed NASCAR finally had something positive going for itself. The news of Elliott’s win would inevitably dominate the headlines.
Then France — pun intended — said, “Hold my beer!”
I’m just so disgusted with Brian France. His lack of responsibility and poor decision making is what captured the headlines on Monday. France stole the spotlight from Elliott when he deserved it the most and once again made an ass of himself.
France wasn’t highly-regarded by fans or the press, to begin with. He rarely makes public appearances, and when he does, it’s always awkward and somewhat embarrassing.
Remember how he handed Truex his championship ring at the banquet last year?
Remember when I said yesterday that NASCAR executives fail at being authentic?
Well, here’s Brian France proving my point last night at the Cup Awards banquet. What the hell. pic.twitter.com/dGmZS6yiTD
— Nick Bromberg (@NickBromberg) December 1, 2017
It’s almost like he doesn’t care about NASCAR at all. The television ratings are horrible, racetracks are tearing down grandstands at an alarming rate, but instead of attending the events and interacting with folks within the industry to rectify the problems, he’s driving drunk and carrying controlled substances.
I feel sorry for Elliott, whose win is overshadowed by France’s incompetence. I feel bad for people within NASCAR who are close to France, and I feel bad for the fans who yet again, see the sport negatively portrayed by the media. But worst of all, I feel bad for his family — more specifically, his children.
France has twin sons, and they’re about 7 or 8 years old. Imagine being them right now. Their father, one of the most powerful men in sports, is making national news for all the wrong reasons. He’s put shame on the France family and all of NASCAR.
That might be what bothers me the most. Brian France has set an extremely poor example for his children. Now, he’s indefinitely suspended from NASCAR. I hope it stays that way.
Lately, there’s been a lot of talk about the France family selling NASCAR. Doesn’t sound like a bad idea right now, and I think a lot of fans would agree with this. One thing is for sure: we can’t — and won’t — tolerate the weak leadership of Brian France anymore.
DISCLAIMER: Thoughts and opinions reflected are only those of the writer. Follow him on Twitter @JohnHaverlin