Volume X, Issue 10, Page 104

: Is there any chance that you’ll ever have a points system? There are people who wish you had a regular points program so that the guy who performed at a high level throughout a ten-race series got some recognition for that rather than the Battle for the Belts, where you can have one bad round and be done? Have you given any thought to having two things?

KN: I’ll tell you a couple of things. From a fan’s perspective, the Battle for the Belts is a great race for several reasons. First, you get to see the top eight in the world duke it out. I’m a huge college football fan, it’s almost as close to my heart as drag racing is, and I’ve always wished they’d just take the top eight teams. Now the argument is always going to be, what about number nine or ten? Number one doesn’t always win.

The reason motorsports have always lagged behind stick and ball sport, in my opinion, is that stick and ball sports have the playoffs, which, with MLB playoffs having just started, you’ll see their television ratings, their merchandise sales, everything goes up dramatically during the post-season. I don’t know that we can ever create an entire post-season environment, but the Battle for the Belts offers guys one though eight an opportunity to go and fight it out.

Now as you said, if Josh Hernandez goes and loses in the first round to Dennis Radford when he would have won a conventional points championship, is that unfair? I don’t think so. Look at the New England Patriots last year. They were 17-0 and they lost in the Super Bowl. I mean, no one was crowning them champion because of the regular season, so they had a bad game. I look at rounds as games. You get so many rounds in the season, but at the end…

: That’s true. You get four quarters in football, four quarters in basketball, but you get one shot.

KN: You get one shot. I think a big part of our responsibility is certainly to the racer, but I also think we have a big responsibility to our fans, and if you look at our championships next year, having ten races with four rounds, that’s forty rounds to try and win a championship. And theoretically, you could have a guy win a championship having never made it to a final. That’s the other side of the argument, just to be consistent. I’m not saying our way is the perfect way, but it’s the best way right now, and I don’t see it changing in the foreseeable future. Although I can tell you that for 2009, the championship purse will double, so there will be more to shoot for come Friday night in 2009.

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