From its raw beginnings on Southern dirt tracks, NASCAR smacked of
a slightly depraved spectacle, as if nothing but trouble could come
from the unbridled locomotion of a V8 engine. By the time NASCAR
roared into the twenty-first century, it had grown into a
billion-dollar sports and marketing colossus, its races attended by
hundreds of thousands of fans on any given weekend from
mid-February through mid-November, watched on television by the
second-largest viewing audience in sports, and bankrolled by the
marketing largesse of the Fortune 500's elite.
One Helluva Ride, a full-throttle account of the rise and reign of
NASCAR nation, is award-winning motorsports reporter Liz Clarke's
chronicle of how stock car racing exploded from regional obsession
to national phenomenon. In covering the sport for more than fifteen
years, Clarke has developed a strong rapport with NASCAR's drivers,
team owners, and hard-core fans. Through her reporting and
analysis, we get to know the public and private sides of NASCAR's
most iconic figures, including seven-time champion Richard Petty,
who set the standard for treating fans with respect, and the late
Dale Earnhardt, whose brazen, bullying tactics wreaked havoc on the
track, but whose heart was as big as Daytona's infield.
The sports world stopped in its tracks the day Earnhardt was killed
on the last lap of the 2001 Daytona 500. Some feared that NASCAR's
soul would die with him. But it has raced on, steered by visionary
promoters, the all-controlling France family (who founded the
sport), and, above all, the next generation of drivers to stir
fans' passions: Dale Earnhardt, Jr., son of the NASCAR legend and
now, like his father before him, the circuit's most popular driver;
Jeff Gordon, the beloved but oft-maligned outsider, bred from the
cradle to be NASCAR's winningest modern champion; and Kasey Kahne,
a reluctant heartthrob whose confidence derives entirely from an
accelerator pedal. Clarke also brings us inside NASCAR's most
triumphant and tragic dynasties: the Pettys, the Earnhardts, and
the Allisons-and reveals how faith, family, and a deep-seated love
of their sport helps them cope with grief and loss.
Clarke shows NASCAR to be at a crossroads. In pursuit of a broader
audience, NASCAR has severed its sponsorship ties to Big Tobacco,
abandoned racetracks in small markets in favor of speedways near
glitzy major cities, and welcomed Japan's Toyota into a sport
traditionally restricted to American-made sedans. As NASCAR races
toward mass appeal, some suggest it is leaving its roots behind. To
others, it is boldly extending its reach from the Southern
workingman to every man, woman, and child in the world.
Whether you're one of the die-hard NASCAR faithful or just a
casual follower, nobody brings you closer to the sport and business
of big-time stock car racing than Liz Clarke. This book, like the
phenomenon it profiles, really is One Helluva Ride.
"From the Hardcover edition."
Is the information for this product incomplete, wrong or inappropriate?
Let us know about it.
Does this product have an incorrect or missing image?
Send us a new image.
Is this product missing categories?
Add more categories.
Review This Product
No reviews yet - be the first to create one!