Why You Can’t Predict Anything Based on the First 10 Races

The plot below shows the cumulative number of cautions per mile since 2007.  I’m using number of cautions per100 miles to 1) make up for races that were not run to completion; 2) compensate for green-white-checkered finishes; 3) compensate for tracks that have shortened races; and 4) compensated for changing…

Are Cautions Really Going Down?

I honestly cannot help it – scientists are naturally skeptical. If you make an assertion, I will have to question you on what data you have that supports it. This is second nature to the people I work with, but I realize it is damned irritating to non-scientists (aka “normal”) people.

So when I started reading everywhere that “cautions were down 35%”, I had to go look into it. This is a preliminary post – more detailed analysis will follow as soon as I’ve read my students’ final projects and gotten comments back to them.

More Ragan vs. Allmendinger Statistics: Running at Finish

Great comment from Robby on my post statistically comparing AJ Allmendinger and David Ragan:

One thing you didn’t really factor which is a big deal to car owners is busted equipment. David Ragan destroys alot of race cars…AJ is one of the least wreck prone drivers in NASCAR. Ragan’s low finished were often a result of a wreck. AJ’s bad finishes were generally the result of bad handling cars or bad luck (Dover, Indy, Texas).

How Likely are You to Win the TNT Million Dollar Challenge?

TNT is offering a million dollars to anyone who picks the top ten drivers – in order – at any of the six NASCAR races they broadcast. You have up until 25% of the race has been run to lock in your selections, which means up to mile 100 at Daytona this weekend. How likely are you to win?

100 Million vs. 78 Million is not the Numbers Question for FOX vs SPEED

The NASCAR pundits have again simplified a complex situation. Incorrectly.

The NASCAR Net is a-twitter since FOX floated a trial balloon about moving races from ESPN to SPEED. I’ve heard the argument over and over, in print and on radio that this is a bad idea because EPSN is in 100 million homes and SPEED is in “only” 78 million homes. They argue this would be a decline of 22 million potential viewers. The question not being asked how many of those 22 million ESPN watchers are actually potential viewers?

Why Six Points is About Right for What Used to be a 25-Point Penalty

I was watching the movie A Clockwork Orange the other night.  There is a scene where Malcolm McDowell, having been “rehabilitated” and returned to society incapable of defending himself, is being beat up by an old man.  He can’t even defend himself.  For some reason, it made me think of…

Was Patrick’s Pole a Fluke?

Patrick Carpentier is usually smiling, but his smile was special Friday after he won the pole at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Nanoseconds hadn’t elapsed before commentators started attributing his win to the 1 hour, 45-minute delay that was caused by rain. Clearly the changing track conditions were responsible for one…

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