A Brand-New Wizard

Kevin Harvick's title hopes finally came to fruition. (HHP/Garry Eller photo for Chevy Racing)

Kevin Harvick’s title hopes finally came to fruition. (HHP/Garry Eller photo for Chevy Racing)

Gotta go...to an indie bookstore!

Clinton, South Carolina, Wednesday, November 19, 2014, 11:04 a.m.

Another NASCAR year is over. The Sprint Cup Series, by the miracle of the Etch a Sketch, has produced a new champion, Kevin Harvick, and it was a bit overdue. Harvick, who turns thirty-nine on the eighth day of December, is of the same generation as Dale Earnhardt Jr., and several others who have had potential titles vacuumed away by the Great Hoover of Jimmie Johnson.

In short, Harvick is a deserving champion, fast all year, and positioned perfectly, in the end, to exploit the Etch a Sketch’s more advanced features. The season had a rousing start, Earnhardt’s victory in the Daytona 500, and a frenetic finish, with enough “Game Seven Moments” in between to thump the NASCAR tub.

How about Etch a Sketches for both the December 8 birthday boys? (HHP/Harold Hinson photo for Chevy Racing)

How about Etch a Sketches for both the December 8 birthday boys? (HHP/Harold Hinson photo for Chevy Racing)

Let’s take a break with a bit of useless trivia. Ryan Newman, who finished second in the intertwined race (Ford 400, Homestead-Miami Speedway) and Chase, was also born on December the eighth, though he will turn thirty-seven instead of thirty-nine.

The season had many worthy champions, if for no other reason than worth is defined by an Etch a Sketch that draws it rather broadly. When the Empire’s minions shook that box one last time, Harvick was best equipped to twist the knobs.

That, as they say in Daytona Beach, is the bottom line, and it is what it is at the end of the day. The Chase is fully integrated, multifaceted, debris-strewn, thoroughly waved around, and situated exactly where the rubber meets the road. It’s a rich language the business folks talk.

For Jeff Gordon, another championship year slipped away. (HHP/Harold Hinson photo for Chevy Racing)

For Jeff Gordon, another championship year slipped away. (HHP/Harold Hinson photo for Chevy Racing)

Somehow, out of all those red Solo cups on the back straight, those checkpoints where a roughhousing eleventh beat a futile second, those one wrong moves that dispatched other worthy candidates to the broadening purgatory … a fun-loving, mischievous champion emerged.

So give Harvick his credit. In an age where many of his peers play video games, Harvick plays mind games. He loves to stir things up.

As such, he fits the format perfectly. Just as Johnson knew how to seal the old deal, Harvick proved himself a wizard at etching the sketch.

Thanks for taking time off from your busy schedule to read this blog. Do me the favor of considering my novels, The Intangibles and The Audacity of Dope, along with my other books at: http://www.amazon.com/Monte-Dutton/e/B005H3B144/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1414631316&sr=1-1

 

About Monte

For 20 seasons, I mostly wrote about NASCAR. I'm still paying attention, but I'm spending more of my time these days writing novels and songs. I try to blog regularly on whatever happens to strike my fancy.
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One Response to A Brand-New Wizard

  1. Anne says:

    Well the pesky fact of this insanely stupid format is, he is indeed a one race champ, cannot deny it. A very watered down definition of a champion based on a 36 race season. The media doesn’t want to here it but when BZF keeps tweaking the rules every other minute..fans still have it very fresh in their minds that Jeff Gordon is the champion via non Chase points and Joey Logano is the champion via the Chase system. It is asking a lot of Nascar fans to embrace this format when Kevin in non Chase and Chase points still had other drivers ahead of him with more points. This SEASON did not reward consistency, but allowed 1 race to decide a season long champion. Nope, not for me and I know from seeing around the internet and my circle of face to face humans, this was a disaster of epic proportions despite what the paid pundits keep trying to jam down our throats about its “success”.

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