Today I thought that against my better judgement I would revisit a subject that has been already beaten to death. And for that I apologize in advance. But I thought I would try to see how you feel about it.

For the past day or so, I have been involved in a thread on Facebook about “cheating” in motorsports. To give the short version of the story, the individual who started the thread accuses the race sanctioning body of manipulating the races and therefore the results. While I have said that in my view condoning, and even encouraging cheating by the teams is equally wrong in my view. So as you can imagine we have agreed to disagree. Or, at least I have.

Looking at the issue it appears that motorsport in general is divided into two camps. To make a broad generalization it appears that road racing is far less forgiving of outright bending or breaking of the rules. Back when I was club racing in the SCCA, they didn’t fool around with some monetary penalty which depending on the depth of your pockets could be either devastating or a slap on the wrist. Rather the most common penalty would be a suspension of a few races to think about it. On the professional side, the penalties seem to be more likely to be things that either penalize the team or sponsor. A race suspension, monetary fines, or a loss of championship points. But seldom is there not some major punishment for an infraction of the rules. F1, of course is known to be extremely heavy handed with monetary fines.

But it appears that to sum up the mindset is this. It is perfectly fine to take your interpretation of the rules right up to the very edge. An example being the use of the hole for the jack in the floor of the Brawn F1 car to feed air into the diffuser. Maybe in the spirit of the rule thats a little edgy, but it is legal. However its not ok to deliberately break the rules, like an oversize fuel cell. If you do that you better have good lawyers to represent you at the hearing.

On the other hand there appears to be a culture in oval racing that its all a game, kind of like the Roadrunner and the Coyote.  That you can do whatever you can get away with. That its just being creative and that its not really cheating. In fact, some of the most revered figures have been known for their “creativity”.

So I’m curious as to how you feel about it. Please answer the poll question below and lets see how you feel about it.

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