Monday, August 28, 2006


"I am a TRUE fan of Driver X!"

"A REAL fan would follow him everywhere!"

"Well, you are NOT a FAN, or you would believe ALL that he says!"

Everyone in NASCAR has a favorite driver. And for every driver, there are fans who are convinced they are the only true disciples of that driver.

There is a certain amount of idolation that goes along with many fans. They may willingly accept that their driver can do no wrong. But, the certainty that they are the One True Fan is something that even they cannot define accurately.

Fan A has been following the driver since the early, Busch racing days. Fan B has only been following the driver since he moved to his second Cup ride. Fan C is following this driver because the driver is wearing the colors of a favorite sponsor. Fan D is a follower because of the manufacturer of the car. And also there is Fan E, who joined the following since the driver won his first race.

Which fan is more special here?

Then you have the fans who declare "I spend $50 bazillion in souvies every year!" or "I joined his fan club in 1975!" or "I attend every autograph session within 150 miles!" or "I have 17,000 posts on his message board!"

And which is the more true fan in this group?

How about those who not only know the name of every crew member, but they also know the names of the person who sweeps the floors at the shop. What about the fan that regularly bakes goodies to send to the fan club office. How about the ones who gather items to include in a basket to be delivered to the driver or the pit crew.

Surely some of those fans are better fans than others?

Don't forget the fans who will wait in line for 5 hours to see their favorite driver. And the ones who will keep bidding on an ebay item just because it has a signature on it. And then the ones who take on the driver's favorite charity, one they never heard of, just because the driver has chosen that particular method of a tax write off.

The point of this? We are ALL fans. WE are fans who are bound together by a love of NASCAR racing. When one declares themselves to be better fans than others, it is meant to be a put-down. In reality, we all have different ways to be fans. No one person is right or wrong.

I guess that we are ALL real fans!