Rumors, Rumors Everywhere

I’m going to let you in on a NASCAR secret: rumors run rampant in this sport. I know this is hard to believe, so take some time if you need it. From the garage to the media center to the shop floor, rumors  sprout up like kudzu in a ditch and their often just as hard to contain.

Just to put this in perspective, remember high school? You know, the talking behind people’s backs, spreading gossip, getting in fights? High school is a lot like NASCAR’s garage. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s one of the best families you could hope to have, but cattiness creeps in a lot and people talk. I can’t tell you all of the oddball things I have heard through the years (TC has stories too). This is understandable though, you put hundreds of people together for 36+ weekends per year and the grapevine becomes never ending. Sometimes the rumors are true, most of the time they’re not.

TC talked a little about this last week with some of the ridiculous rumors that came out of Sonoma, but I couldn’t help but write about it after some more ridiculousness this week. My personal favorites of the last two weeks include Hendrick booting Dale Jr. (I guess to his own team?) in favor of Danica Patrick and EGR somehow becoming in-house partners with JGR.

Now I don’t mean to say these things are impossible (nothing is), but they are a little far fetched.

Jim Hunter, NASCAR VP of Corporate Communications, in response to the truck series demise blog post/article acknowledged the problems in the truck series, but said the writer of the post had a “history” of fabricating stories.

I won’t go so far as to say this writer or any other is fabricating rumors, but I think with the nature of the beast,  sometimes people hear things and believe them without considering the obvious inconsistencies.

With the above said let me address the validity of some of the “rumors.”

Don’t expect to see the truck series going anywhere any time soon. NASCAR and team owners have far too much time and money invested for the series to shut down over night.

Danica may come to NASCAR, but she won’t be booting Dale Jr. out of his ride. He has a contract and is a superstar moneymaker for Hendrick.

EGR is not the powerhouse team Joe Gibbs is, but don’t expect to see Juan Pablo Montoya driving a Target Toyota for them. Chip Ganassi is a racer, despite what many may think, and he is not going to relinquish control of his NASCAR team or any other team he owns.

Richard Childress doesn’t have all of his funding locked in for next year, but in no way is that an indicator that he is going to be cutting his organization in half.

I guess what I hope everyone takes away from this is that just because something is published, that does not mean it’s true. We all love to break news, that’s part of the reason most people got into the journalism business (who doesn’t dream of being Woodward or Bernstein?), but we can’t break news while neglecting facts or common sense. Every news organization I know requires at least two good sources to break news. This is a rule we follow here. Neither of us likes to be incorrect in what we write, but if we are we acknowledge it. At the end of last season we even gave ourselves a report card in the name of transparency (as transparent as we can be).

I just ask you to not believe or give into everything you read.

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13 Responses to “Rumors, Rumors Everywhere”

  1. marc says:

    Mike Mulhern fabracating stories? The Hell you say!

    Oh wait, that Mike Mulhern oh, never mind I see Hunter’s point.

    Mulhern fails in the NASCAR history department also.

  2. JT says:

    Mike Mulhern has been demoted (by layoff) from newspaper journalist to independent blogger. And now that he is a blogger, I guess he feels the need to post-up every wild rumor that he hears in the garage. This seems to be doing wonders for his web hits, but it is eventually going to make him a pariah in garage.

    I understand that Richard Childress is especially hot about some of the rumors Mulhern has posted (the GM cure letter and protential problems with the renewal of Shell and Jack Daniel’s).

  3. Doug in CA says:

    I’m interested in the Montoya situation. I thought he had signed a three-year deal with Ganassi when he first came to NASCAR, and that contract would be expiring. Has anything been said about Montoya staying? Leaving? The few pieces I have read suggest that he enjoys NASCAR. Personally, I’d like to see him stay.

  4. RaceDriven says:

    Rumors are everywhere, the danica story will be their for years, Dale Jr has a 5 year contract from 2008 while EGR’s future is in trouble and Truex news is well…rumors are rumors until a press release is issued.

    The truck series and the Nationwide Series both have long contracts for their title sponsors and I wouldn’t believe for a moment that NASCAR would get rid of the truck series.

    With that said, I think NASCAR should merge the Nationwide Series and Truck Series into one series called the Sportsmen Series and I have been saying this for over a year and half now, of course don’t hold your breathe (at least for the next two years), by the way, it might stop the bleeding for the sponsors.

  5. Richard in N.C. says:

    Rules? The media has rules? Shocked! I’m shocked.

    I find that you guys do a better job at rules and at being balanced than the majority of what I see from the media, especially the old-line media that came from newspapers.

  6. Ross says:

    Did anyone hear about Robby Gordon expanding to a 4 car team next year????? I thought I read that but can’t remember where!

    I wonder if he’ll sign Danica!!

    Haha, I’m funny. It’s been a long day…

  7. Garry Pacer says:

    What is your opinion on DP?

    Me?
    At first I was NOT a fan of hers. I thopught she was a gimmick, but now, as time has passed, and she has stuck to her guns ( no pun intended;) and she has played the game, she is not a gimmick.

    She has fire in her eyes, she is a competitor, she drives like a pro. She has all the right moves, and she seems to do all the right things ( both on track to compete, and offtrack to gain sponsors ).

    Sure, she does not have many wins ( just one ), but the competion is tough, and she is in the hunt most of the time, and that impresses me.

    She does not let people walk on her, and she seems to have embraced the sexy part of her image, I am now a fan of hers. Something about a firehearted woman turns me on, but I should admit, that if I ever made an on track racing mistake and pissed her off, and I saw/heard she was coming my way…..I would uhm… “brace myself”

    BUT…
    For some reason, I cant envison see her in a stock car. I dont know why, but she seems better suited to indy raciing.

    I cant explain why I feel this way.

    I wonder what you and TC think, and anyone else who wants to add anything, but please, I am only having fun wondering etc. I am not looking for trouble, I dont want to argue, I really dont care that much, but the rumor above sparked my thoughts and some perspective would be interesting.

  8. GARRY PACER says:

    “Richard in N.C. on Jun 30th, 2009 at 2:42 pm
    Rules? The media has rules? Shocked! I’m Shocked.”
    LOL : )

    “” I find that you guys do a better job at rules and at being balanced than the majority of what I see from the media, especially the old-line media that came from newspapers “”

    I double that sentiment, that is why I started/keep coming here, GOOD JOB YOU GUYS. GREAT WEBSITE.

  9. Newracefan says:

    There’s a reason it’s called a rumor, the problem comes when some say that they are fact. I never 100% believe unless it’s an official announcement or here (you guys always qualify your info if it is just a rumor)

  10. stewart14fan says:

    My Motto….

    “DON’T BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU THINK.”

    …nuff said.

  11. Andrew says:

    Mike Mulhern’s always spread…less-than-sourced rumors, especially during silly season, but he’s also a fairly good writer and the latter usually makes up for the former. The past two weeks, though, he’s gone off the deep end with the rumors. It’s almost like he’s so desperate to be right about something that he’s posting absolutely everything. Which would be ok, if they were marked as rumors, not fact.

  12. knobcreekfan says:

    Maybe I am missing something, but I do not see where Mulhern actually said Danica was taking JR’s seat. Yes, it says that on jayski and it is attributed to Mulhern. However, if you read the post the jayski links his report to, Mulhern never says that.

    He also never says the truck series is going under. The title of his article says “The future of NASCAR’s Truck tour seems increasingly in doubt.” Similar to a post here a week or so ago, he points out there are problems for the series. If they cannot reverse the trend of these problems, yes, the future of the series is in jeopardy.

    As a rule of thumb, when a spokesperson says that there is no truth to that rumor and then declines to comment further…the rumor is pretty close and the deal is almost done.

    Remember a month or so ago when lots of fans were calling for Robin Miller’s head from speedtv? He has it in for Tony George. He has no connections within the IMS/IRL organization anymore. Etc. Well, guess what. It is a month later and pretty much exactly what Robin reported was announced by the Hulman-George family last night.

    Where there is smoke, there is fire.

  13. sam says:

    HEY ,everyone ,sometimes rumors are true exspecially when you have finally been busted theres a new book out called secrets exposed get the book you serious nascar fans its a great read than you will see nascar is not all there cracked up to be this is 2009 not the 60,s get the book all of there secrets are exposed and when it rains it pours thats why there having alot of bad luck on race day and with sponsers!!!!!!!!!

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