Tuesday, June 01, 2010

It's a man's racing world

I saw a few articles this past weekend about female auto racers. Note that I didn't really read them because I am not all that into auto racing. But the headlines were similar in that they noted the increased presence of women at Indy: there were four this year!
This was interesting in light of two things:
1. Christine Brennan's column on the women in Indy versus the lack of women in NASCAR. There were no women racing Sunday for NASCAR. Danica Patrick who finished 6th in Indy is racing some second tier NASCAR events. But apparently the lack of women can be attributed to how heavy the cars are!

Said Eddie Gossage, president of Texas Motor Speedway:

"(NASCAR) may not lend itself toward women, who are, by nature, smaller people," he said. "The cars are bigger, heavier and require more physical demands. The races are longer. There are 38 races to a season, and it gets to be a tremendous physical grind. I'm not slamming women. I'm simply saying there is a big difference in a 3,400-pound stock car vs. a (1,600-pound) Indy car."
Brennan goes on to talk about the cultural influences as well, especially from NASCAR's strong Southern presence.
2. And speaking of cultural influences...I unfortunately had to watch too many Blur commercials this weekend because ESPN is airing them during the coverage of the French Open. Blur is a racing game that I don't really understand but I know it has a social networking component and that you can race against others (not in the room--or not just in the room anyway). So it has the flashy, dark realistic graphics and presents itself in contrast to the cartoony Nintendo-like racing games and the commercial ends with the tagline "race like a big boy."
Yeah, that pretty much tells you who racing is for--even simulated racing!

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