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Joey Logano Says Fans Are ‘Spoiled’: Is He Right?

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Joshua Lipowski

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What’s Happening?

Driver accessibility is a hot topic amongst NASCAR drivers right now. Joey Logano recently gave his take on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio, calling NASCAR fans “Spoiled” by how much access fans have to their favorite drivers. What do other drivers have to say about this topic?

You Need to Know:

  • Joey Logano pushed back against a narrative that NASCAR drivers are not accessible. He noted how easily fans can access drivers on the grid or infield before a race. He also said that most drivers are “normal folk”.
  • This conversation started around the F1 race in Las Vegas. A couple of NASCAR drivers commented on the lack of accessibility fans had to Formula One drivers. It opened up an interesting discussion surrounding accessibility.
  • Not every fan agrees with Logano’s take on how accessible NASCAR drivers are. Other fans commented about how drivers being more accessible decreases the value of meeting a driver.

Analyzing Logano’s Comments

Logano calling NASCAR fans “Spoiled” may rub some the wrong way. However, drivers are accessible to fans during a race weekend. He mentioned how drivers sign autographs on the red carpet, and here is a video of that happening this past season.

There is something to be said for drivers being accessible at the race track. Fans love the opportunity to meet their favorite driver for a picture or an autograph. It makes the day for many fans, especially kids. Austin Cindric complimented NASCAR’s accessibility in this comment to Autoweek‘s Susan Wade.

You buy a general admission ticket (at NASCAR), and you can come take a selfie with your favorite driver and get an autograph nine times out of 10. whereas if I go to Formula 1 race, I’m never seeing Lewis Hamilton. 

Austin Cindric

Nine times out of ten may be a bit hyperbolized. A NASCAR fan who buys the average race ticket will likely not randomly bump into a driver in the midway before a race. It often takes some special access via a VIP pass, an extra infield ticket, or knowing the schedule for driver appearances outside of the track. Those schedules can be difficult to find.

However, if fans are savvy enough, connected enough, or willing to fork over some extra cash, they can find a way to meet their favorite driver. There is a relatively easy way to do it in NASCAR, and not every sport can say that.

The Value of Meeting a Driver

However, Denny Hamlin gave an alternate perspective on this in response to Cindric’s comments. He mentioned that something of high value is usually not easily accessible.

Why was Lewis Hamilton not accessible to Austin Cindric at the Las Vegas Grand Prix? Lewis Hamilton is a mega-star, and that popularity naturally makes him tougher to access for the average fan. The more popular someone is, the more security measures they have to take so that person can do their job.

Celebrities are often tough to access not because they are mean or hate their fans. It is to allow them to do their job without being constantly bombarded by people.

This is part of the mystique of athletes or celebrities. If you can meet one of them, it is a big deal because very few average fans get to. If NASCAR drivers are easy to access, what does that say about their popularity or the value of meeting them?

There are multiple angles to this argument. How generally accessible NASCAR drivers are is a debatable topic. However, a driver being easier to access says something about the value and popularity of the sport as well

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Joshua Lipowski

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