Fourth Turn – Milwaukee Mile

Just an idea – and a borrowed one at that.

The late John Reiser, crew chief Robbie?s dad and an outside-of-the box-thinker if there ever was one, was discussing the state of NASCAR racing one day a few years ago in Charlotte. Robbie and Matt Kenseth had gone Cup racing, and John was about to hire a young Clay Rodgers to pilot the family Busch Series Chevrolet. The conversation turned to the condition of the Cup/Busch series and, of course, John had a thought.

He said that he and several other Busch Series team owners had been asked about what it would take to move some Busch circuit teams up to Cup Series competition, forming two Cup groups that would compete as a ?Red? circuit and a ?Blue? circuit, with 30-40 cars in each group.

The idea was to split the star drivers between the two groups, with each group appearing once per year at tracks with two Cup dates, and every other year at tracks with just one Cup race. Both divisions would join forces at a few races each year, such as the Daytona 500.

Reiser also saw the Craftsman Truck Series helping to fill the void left by the teams who moved to Cup, and perhaps a Busch-type series could continue with those BGN teams that didn?t want to make the move.

He viewed this plan as a way of satisfying the demand for Cup races by tracks such as Milwaukee, Kentucky, Pikes Peak, etc., who with the current schedule, have little chance to land a lucrative Cup date.

Little did John realize at the time, but with NASCAR?s current guarantee of the top-35 cars making the Cup field each week, and several top teams (read Toyota) going home after qualifying, ?The Plan? would allow for teams with major sponsors
to actually make the field each week and could have encouraged new teams and drivers to enter. It could also have prevented the legal hassles brought about by tracks seeking NASCAR Cup circuit dates.

Unfortunately, John Reiser died before this plan made any progress. Today it?s probably sitting at the back of someone?s file cabinet in Daytona, never to see the light of day.

But as we watch this weekend?s AT&T 250 at the Milwaukee Mile, just think – you could be watching a ?Red? series Nextel Cup race with Jeff and Dale Jr. battling Tony and Matt for the win. If only some progressive thinking had taken place.

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