The NASCAR Vortex Theory

The NASCAR Vortex Theory says that cars racing around an oval track create a rotational disturbance that repels oncoming storms. Truth? Or Myth? What’s a Vortex? A vortex is a region in a fluid (and remember: air is a fluid) where the flow revolves around an axis line. A physicist…

Does NASCAR Have a Momentum Effect?

Here’s a drinking game for you the next time you tune into any sports broadcast, be it motorsports, golf, rugby, boxing or tennis. Drink every time you hear the word ‘momentum’. You can play the game with pre-shows, post-shows, and even with elections or the stock market. Momentum seems to…

Montage of speed-related pictures

Winning vs. Consistency: The Delicate Balance of the NASCAR Playoffs

The NASCAR playoffs determine the season’s champion. Is the champion the guy who wins the most races? Or the guy who runs up front the most?

There’s no scientific way to answer this question, but there is data. NASCAR has modified their playoffs to try to create a suitable balance between winning and consistency. Have they succeeded?

The NASCAR Playoffs and Preordination

Preordination (n): The action of determining an outcome or course of action in advance; The fact of being determined in advance. The Oxford Living Dictionary You’d think with my interest in data that I’d be the type of person who loved brackets, right? While scientists usually have some idea of how…

Sciencing Out NASCAR Rules Changes

Rules changes in NASCAR are tricky.  There’s really no way to test them before implementing them. You’re relying on the judgement and experience of the NASCAR team, with input from race teams, drivers, Goodyear and tracks. How to Test Rules Packages? Robert Gauthier (@yetticrg) tweeted a question to me (You…

%d bloggers like this: