Promoting Kenseth’s Wreck: Fair or Foul ?

Spencer Neff


Yesterday, Martinsville Speedway released a commercial promoting their upcoming race weekend, which takes place in two weeks following the weekend off. Now, this commercial would hardly have created much news outside of the racing itself, but it did feature a controversial clip. The clip in question was of Matt Kenseth wrecking Joey Logano while Logano was in the lead late in the November race, with that serving as the climax in a feud between the two dating back a few weeks.

The most controversial aspect of the clip’s appearance was not the wreck itself, but what resulted because of the wreck. Kenseth’s actions resulted in a two-week suspension by NASCAR and its CEO Brian France condoning Kenseth’s actions as unacceptable.

Now, it’s highly likely that Brian France was not directly involved in Martinsville Speedway’s decision to air the wreck as part of their promotional materials, it is yet another black eye for a sanctioning body that many feel is inconsistent in its rulings and often times makes up the rules as they go along.

Overall, the issue in question is not whether Martinsville should be allowed to use the wreck in its advertising, they should be allowed to use just about any footage they feel is appropriate and helpful in promoting their events. The real issue is that NASCAR uses these wrecks as promotional material, while it simultaneously condones behaviors like Kenseth’s and people inside the sport have condoned fans for wanting more cautions and possibly wrecks.

If NASCAR and other motorsports sanctioning bodies are to frown upon these wrecks and fans wanting them, then they should cut back on their use of crash footage in advertising, or if they are going to use such footage, not be so quick and harsh in condoning such behavior by their drivers.

Have a great Race Day and see you soon.


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