To that point, this is ultimately the biggest point of contention for everyone on both sides of the 2019 package debate: No one is having the same conversation with each other, creating the toxic environment in which we all currently reside.
NASCAR touts passing statistics each week as evidence that the high downforce, low horsepower formula is directionally sound. Its detractors point to the loss of traditional racing characteristics like throttle control, drivability and tire management.
The driver’s council dissolved after most of its members claimed they felt NASCAR wasn’t listening.
This package debate is going nowhere on a weekly basis because one side is trumping the virtues of entertainment while the other is lamenting the loss of sporting integrity. There is no middle ground with this formula as one has been sacrificed in exchange for the other.
And there’s undoubtedly a market for both, meaning one side is going to crash in burn out when NASCAR’s Gen-7 race car comes out in 2021.
NASCAR officials are in a thankless, unenviable position these days.
They have spent so long this decade trying to ensure a four-way championship tie each season, green flag race-ending shootouts and pack racing throughout the field that there comes a point where the fan base becomes insatiable.
In the process, NASCAR has lost its identity and is struggling to find itself in 2019. That breeds discontent from all corners of the industry and threatens to tear it apart in the coming years.
Ask the Indy car community how this story ends.
That’s why this weekly narrative shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s not sustainable.
If those who work in the highest level aren’t having fun, how are the fans supposed to find joy each week?