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Six Observations About Gen-6

Friday, January 11, 2013
It might be the King of Beers, but it certainly wasn't the King of Designs this week. Photo: Getty Images

The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series tested their brand new Generation-Six cars for the last two days and will continue to so on Saturday.

... At least, those with cars still in one piece will continue to test.

Here are a half dozen things that I noticed in the brief time I tuned in for the testing on SPEED via NASCAR.com.

1. New Cars, Same Pile-Ups

The Gen-6s wrecked in pack racing every bit as much as the five generations before them.  In an afternoon pack session, Marcos Ambrose got a little loose and Dale Earnhardt Jr. closed in too fast, causing Ambrose's No. 9 to go for a spin and set off "The Big One."

2. Showroom Meets Speedway

It seems like manufacturers are forever trying to find small ways to reflect their model in the car's design.  For the first time, I actually can convince myself that I might be looking at a show room car from a dealership, as opposed to something that used so much make-up and plastic surgery that it makes Snooki look somewhat natural.  To put it simply, I no longer have to try to explain to the non-NASCAR fans how the Toyotas look different from the Chevys and Fords.

3. Five Championships Doesn't Guarantee Spelling

As a colorman on Thursday, Kyle Petty stated he didn't think Jimmie Johnson would win another championship.  I disagree with that statement, but that's not related to this post.  What is related to this post is that many No. 48 fans disagreed with that statement and shared those sentiments with Petty via Twitter.  The problem is that many of them insisted on defending "Jimmy Johnson."  Sorry, but if you can't spell the guy's name right, you're not a fan of his.  At least that much I can agree on with Petty.

4. SPEED Needs Online TV

ESPN does a great job with Watch ESPN, which allows users to access their vast amount of programming.  That includes the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series when it's on the "Worldwide Leader in Sports."  SPEED, the official station of motorsports, doesn't allow the same opportunity.  NASCAR.com did a great job streaming the morning sessions, but it's crazy that Friday afternoon's wreck wasn't readily available to those of us at work that don't have TV in our offices.

5. DeLana Harvick Needs To Take More Responsibility With The No. 29

In the event you spent 2012 living in a log cabin, the Harvicks had a child.  Not that I needed to tell anyone that.  One look at how ugly Harvick's car looked this week and you can tell that a woman didn't give her aesthetic eye for this box on wheels.  Not only does the sponsor look haphazardly slapped on, but the number on the roof isn't even complete.  I'm sure that even if she wasn't there in person, DeLana probably shared her disgruntlement with this jalopy via Twitter.

6. Nothing Is More Exciting Than The Groan Of An Engine

As a race fan is there anything better than hearing the sound of a racing engine as it turns laps around a hot track?  Yes, actually, there is: when you hear that noise after two months of silence.  It won't be long now until we officially wave the green flag on racing in the 2013 NASCAR season!