There is only one American driver who went across the Atlantic to beat the Europeans at what they perceive to be their game – Phil Hill. Although Mario Andretti is American by the most practical interpretation of the label, he was born in Italy so he doesn’t really count. The last American driver, Scott Speed, was dropped by Toro Rosso after 1.5 seasons in the cockpit, now finding marginal success in NASCAR. And before him…? An overweight and overhyped Michael Andretti, who seemed to DNF more races that I could bother to remember.
And when it comes to the constructor / supplier end of things, Ford had good success with their program but it really wasn’t Ford considering it was Cosworth Engineering who was buildng all the engines. And Goodyear was a single supplier of tires to F1 for many years, but bowed out in 1998.
So you can say the red, white and blue hasn’t seen much return-on-investment when it comes to Formula 1 racing.
Over the last few weeks, there has been quite a bit of hype around USF1. Supposedly, the new team will unveil itself for the 2010 season, headquarted in (gasp!) Charlotte, North Carolina, with an operational base somewhere in Spain. All fine and dandy, I suppose, but I have some questions for the two gentlemen who are putting together this team:
– Where are you going to find the money to foot the hundreds of millions of dollars required to run a competitive team? With the global economy in shambles, current F1 sponsors not reupping their contract after 2009 and motorsports in a state of crisis, where will the $$ come from?
– There are reports that Danica Patrick is a contender for one of the drivers’ seats. Danica Patrick? Excuse me? She was competitive in the former Champ Car Atlantic Series, but hasn’t done much in the Indy Car series. For her to be a high-midpack driver in a spec series doesn’t say a whole lot about her potential in the highest (and toughest) form of motorsport in the world. And her only victory to date was at Motegi, a circle jerk track owned by Indy Car series engine supplier Honda (which, ironically, has dropped out of F1). Formula 1 is on courses where there are both left AND right turns… and they brake, accelerate and shift all day long. If you want to see how sad some of these Indy Car drivers are, just watch some of the road / street course races this year.
– Do we even need an American Formula 1 team? Americans are preoccupied with NASCAR and even that’s dropping in the ratings as we speak. The Indy 500 isn’t what it used to be. Open wheel racing in America as whole isn’t what it used to be. ALMS doesn’t seem to be in particularly good health. So why bring yet another distraction for motorsports fans? Sure, I’d love to see the F1 circus come back to America, but the existence of an American F1 team isn’t going to elevate my enthusiasm for it whatsoever.
– Aside from Danica – who said she doesn’t want to be on the other side of the pond to race – what other talent do we have that could fill these drivers’ seats? Certainly no American drivers pop into my mind… save for Marco Andretti. He certainly has the pedigree and the youth to develop into one hell of a driver, but I think it’s an awful lot to risk to put in a driver without the required European open wheel experience. And why do they have to be American drivers anyways? There are plenty of drivers from the GP2 feeder series that could do quite well.
So I’m still confused as to why USF1 even needs to exist. Or what their mission / plan is. The coming weeks will hopefully answer these questions.
The Cincinnati Bengals named kicker, Shayne Graham their franchise player this week. This is a move that enables the 8 year vet to sign another one-year deal with the team equal to the average dollar amount of the 5 highest paid kickers in the league.
While saving the Bengals a lot of money, you have to wonder where this leaves their relationship with other play-makers. Houshmandzadeh, one of the few highlights on a rather lackluster offense is now headed for free agency. Head coach Marvin Lewis acknowledged that the odds of him returning to the team will be odd. The Bengals could have retained TJ by placing the franchise mark on him, but would have had to do it at the sum of about $10 M for a year as opposed to $2.2…well, I guess WE ARE IN RECESSION.
Franchising Graham also gives Cedric Benson more options and allows him to seek other avenues.
I honestly can’t believe that The Bengals decided to go this route. Inevitably, they will return next season without the likes of Houshmadzadeh and possibly anyone to fill in as threatening running-back. They will be supported by a cranky primadonna wide receiver (Chad Johnson), an injury plagued quarterback ( Carson Palmer), a decrepit defense and… Chris Perry in the backfield??? Well at least they have a shot at sending their kicker to the Pro Bowl.
In a press conference Graham un-excitedly stated, “I appreciate the Bengals’ recognition of my value to the team. I would have preferred to enter a long-term market value contract, either with the Bengals or through free agency.”
So, I suppose, no one is really happy today in Cincinnati. Not even newly franchised Graham. Let me check the weather… Yea everyone is miserable.
Good luck, Cincinnati, compiling a decently respectable team in the off-season.
And THAT’s what the StatDragon is breathing fire about!
The Cowboys have yet to find an official sponsor for their new stadium. So if you have some extra money in the ol’ piggybank you don’t mind parting with, $400 M for 20 years will get your name on the dome. Personally, I won’t be able to hack this kind of deal with Mr. Jones and the Cowboy organization. For one, the StatDragon has a vice for gin and tonics AND happy hours at The Spearmint Rhino Strip Club…both of which cost a bit of money. Seriously, I’m more into this Russian stripper there named Nadia than Mickey Rourke’s character was into Marissa Tome in The Wrestler. Secondly, the economy has left a proverbial “Cleveland Steamer” on my chest. And last but not least, I live at home with my grandma and make a living off blogging…awesome.
The steroid ship sailed for me about four years ago. At that point, I dropped my Bob Costas “For the Love of the Game” naivete and began thinking anyone in the game could have been a user. No discrimination, no hesitation. I viewed steroids and PED’s in baseball in the same way I viewed cocaine use in the mid-1970s. Everyone was doing it, so don’t judge individuals. Instead judge the era. The latest A-Rod information isn’t such a big deal except for people who still thought of A-Rod as the savior who was going to erase the villainous Barry Bonds from the National Pastime’s ledger. Well, too bad, and you folks who villify Bonds had better start spreading the hate around.
From day one, Barry Bonds has been the prime target. Even Clemens, McGwire, Palmeiro, and Sosa have gotten treated with kid gloves compared to Barry Lamar. Now Barry’s buddy A-Rod should share some heat. But, instead of spreading the heat I suggest going to the source. The source, you ask? The source is one George Walker Bush. Liberal cynicism? Nope. Kicking the cowboy while he’s down? Nope. Think about it. Who stood up in front of the nation and gave Major League Baseball the come to Jesus talk as a part of the State of the Union address? It was one, George Walker Bush. Yet, which organization was at the forefront of steroid use when the era began in the mid-1990s? The Texas Rangers. Who was running the Texas Rangers at the time Canseco, Juan Gone, and Raffy Palmeiro were sticking each other in the booty? That’s right, George Walker Bush. Bush’s political legacy will take generations and gallons of “white out” to fix. His social legacy needs to suffer as well. How is the guy who “cowboyed” up to hunt down drugs in baseball going to be the actual source of the problem? That shows how ridiculous this issue is. The steroid ship has sailed. Let’s sink it at sea and just admit that baseball has been screwed up for a long time. Stop this damn posturing about who gets into the Hall of Fame. If cats from this tainted era have the numbers, put them in the Hall. Don’t sit there and not vote for McGwire because he didn’t say anything. Do you want a Hall of Fame filled with Melky Cabrera’s and Steve Finley’s? Vote for McGwire. Vote for Bonds. Vote for A-Rod. But first vote for Pete Rose. If not, the Hall will end up looking lamer than it already does.
FlyMaster Signing Off…For Now!
Forget steroids for a minute. Forget Olympians bong-toking. Forget the Lakers tapping the Celtics and Cavs in back-to-back games. It’s time to break out the full-court coverage on the greatest American sporting event. That’s right, my friends, it is Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show time. Some of you may consider this coverage ludicrous, cynical, and even irrelevant, but you’re straight up wrong. If there’s one thing the FlyMaster loves, it’s bitches. Bitches of all shapes and sizes. Loud bitches. Quite bitches. Black bitches. White bitches. Brindle bitches. Bitches that drool. Bitches that like pools. Bitches that eat meat. As long as that bitch has four feet, she can compete.
On the real side, the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show is a gem of the highest carat weight. Each February Madison Square Garden becomes the world’s fanciest dog park. Last week Kobe and Lebron both left their mark on the Garden. This week there will be all sorts of marks left on the garden. America’s blue bloods parade their canine compatriots with more pride than when Yury Andropov surveyed and approved the Soviet Army in Red Square. You know you’re dealing with a blue blood, conceited, four legged spoiled brats when they sport names like “Champion Dulymus Arbuckle on High Quartermain,” and “Winchester Trig Palin McCain We Lost Damnit.” The FlyDog is named Del. Keep it simple, muffy. Now that the backstory is set, let’s break down the 133rd Westiminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
Last year’s champion was Uno, a beagle that took the City by storm and did it his way. With his dynamic personality and semi-tolerable breath, Uno was a lock to go back-to-back, but alas Uno is currently embroiled in ACL rehabilitation and a performance enhancing drug scandal that prevent him from competing. The field is wide open, just like the NL MVP race once Barry Bonds removed himself from the league. This year’s early favorites are Lincoln, a Brussels Griffon from the Toy Group, and Carly, a corgi from the Herding Group. Here’s a group by group breakdown.
The Sporting Group is replete with every type of retriever, spaniel, and pointer you’d ever want to see. While many of the pundits laud the accomplishments of the English Springer Spaniel, and some of the overseas prognosticators are lining up in the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon’s corner, Sir FlyMaster will be sticking to his preseason pick, the Vizsla. The Vizsla is a little-known Hungarian dog that puts all thes other Sporting Mutts in their place. Watch out for the Nova Scotia Duck Toiling Retriever to make a splash as well.
The Terrier Group features a bunch of glorified rat and rabbit hunters. If that’s your dharma, you don’t deserve an award show. But since they’re in the competition we’ll pick a winner. Eeny, meeny, miny, mo. Pick the Norwich Terrier and get on with the show.
The Toy group is a disgrace to the animal kingdom. These dogs are the preferred choice of B-list celebrities, gay mafiosos, old ladies with skin that looks like a well tanned kangaroo hide, and the Sportsfly office. This year it was tough to make a decision, but FlyMaster is rolling with the Japanese Chin for two reasons. Japanese Chin sounds like a disparaging disease name from the mid 1800s and the name “Chin” is Chinese, so who the hell is Japanese Chin? Conspiracy in the making.
Non-Sporting Group:All bastard dogs that really don’t serve a purpose and can’t be classified in any of the other groups get thrown in the Non-Sporting Group. Here you’ll find your Poodles, Dalmations, Chow Chow, and other ungodly concoctions. Put some money on the Bulldog (British) because he’s really trying to distance himself from the rest of these ragamuffins, but his leg length and genetic predisposition for hip problems are severely limiting. Mercy vote the Bulldog to glory.
The Herding Group features some new entrants this year. This begs the question, were there new dogs discovered last year or has that Human Genome Project taken a turn toward the realm of Doctor Moreau? Anyhow, look for the Swedish Vallhund to make a huge debut this year. Word is, the Vallhund looks more like a shrunk down buffalo with goat eyes and a forked tongue, so you know it will stand out. Other contenders are the Bearded Collie and the Corgi. Either way, it’s going to be a heated competition.
BEST IN SHOW:
No doubt the best in show comp will come down to the Boxer and the Swedish Vallhund. This year’s competition has been switched up to boost ratings. Word has it that Michael Vick will be asked to referee the Best in Show match, with the losing dog being placed on the Signature #7 Rape Stand, where all Chihuahuas are released upon the loser. It ain’t pretty, but it’s sports. Look for the Boxer to take down the Vallhund with some nice punching skills and adept ankle-biting. Sorry Sweden, maybe you can invent another new dog in 2010 and enter again. Until then, 2009 is the year of the Boxer.
Roger Clemens’ legacy sports more tarnish than a Rodin sculpture left out in the Paris weather for 150 years, but the latest revelations from Tom Verducci and Joe Torre’s book “The Yankee Years” are just way too much information. For years Clemens’ workout regimen was put on the pantheon of athletic asceticism alongside Jerry Rice and Walter Payton. “The Yankee Years” may have just revealed how weird a guy Roger Clemens is and odd effects steroids can contribute to deranging an already slightly deranged mind. In the book, Clemens pregame ritual on pitch days was revealed. Steve Donahue, Yankees trainer, claimed that on pitch days Clemens would start by taking a whirlpool bath in scalding hot water. Donahue said that Clemens would emerge “looking like a lobster.” Okay, that’s not too weird. Slightly masochistic, yes, but not altogether weird. Clemens would then have Donahue take the hottest liniment and rub it into his testicles. You read it right. Rub it into his testicles. Donahue continued to say that Clemens would “snort like a bull” and that was the sign he was ready to pitch. Weird.
Clemens’ fall from grace doesn’t need anymore coverage, and getting liniment rubbed into his nuts may just be par for the course. Instead, let’s think about poor Steve Donahue. How many kids dream about wearing the famed pinstripes when they grow up? How many of those kids actually realize that dream? Steve Donahue realized the dream, donned the pinstripes, and once he made the big leagues he ends up rubbing Tiger Balm on the Rocket’s testes. At that price, you can keep the pinstripes. He might as well be in prison and Clemens was his “big brother.”
Imagine going home at night, washing your hands for 2 hours only to have your wife or girlfriend say “how was work…what did you do today?”
“Oh, same ol’ same ol’. I did some therapy on Giambi’s mustache, did rehab work with Hideki, and then rubbed some liniment on Clemens’ genitalia.”
“Isn’t that a little gay?”
“Yeah, a little bit, but he’s the Rocket.”
“Did you touch his rocket?”
“No, baby that’s just gross…strictly the nuts.”
That conversation can’t ever go well. Sorry, Steve Donahue did you not ever see that Beverly Hills 90210 episode where they teach about “No Means No”? Rub your own testes. That should be a rule across society. Rub your own testes.
FlyMaster Signing Off…For Now!
The Super Bowl experience increasingly wraps and intertwines itself in a bind of hype, hyperbole, and overexposure. Turn on your TV, radio, or computer today and everywhere you turn Super Bowl 43 stares at you like that money you would have saved if you signed with Geico. From Sunday to Sunday the coverage is simply too much. There is no way the game can ever live up to the hype that precedes it. It’s Monday morning and I’ve already heard the following stories.
- Hines Ward is waking up every 3 hours to take medicine and ice his knee. Big f’*cking deal. So does the FlyGrandma.
- Tampa Bay is bracing itself for a week of record crowds. New York just called to say “shut the f up.”
- Arizona players are spending Monday and Tuesday dealing with the logistics of giving out tickets. All of America is busy ducking creditors, so giving out tickets seems mighty easy.
- This just in…Kurt Warner thanked Jesus.
- Mike and Mike on the Radio just went through their top Super Bowl moments. Every other media outlest will publish their lists by noon on Tuesday.
- The weather in Tampa is nice.
- Ben Roethlisberger is happy to be back in the Super Bowl. What is he supposed to be, pissed off?
- Arizona feel like underdogs and nobody respects them. You know who’s not respected? The homeless, three-legged dogs, middle-aged call girls, honeybees, and teachers.
- John Madden is riding a bus to Tampa. No shit. Wow, is it filled with Turducken?
- Vegas is bracing for a record in bets. Of course it is, everyone who’s broke is looking for the quick come up.
Brace yourselves for the wave of inundation. If the game can be 1/10 as good as the hype machine says it will be, we’ll have ourselves a game worthy of being played in week 12 of any season.
FlyMaster Signing Off…For Now!
If you haven’t heard, the New Jersey Institute of Technology snapped a 51-game losing streak Wednesday night beating the Bulldogs from Bryant. NJIT held the longest losing streak in the NCAA for a team playing a D-1 schedule. This team had not won a game since 2007 and they were celebrating like Marisa Tomei was giving them all lap dances. Coach Jim Engles said, “We deserve this. We deserve to win most of our games, because we work so hard every game. The kids never quit. I’m really happy for them,” Yeah you really deserve it, congratulations you are now 1-18.
Now this story hits real close to home. Being an alumni of the Bryant Bulldogs I received about 12 emails with the same sarcastic wit. They ranged from:
“How bout them Bulldogs”, “That can’t be good for business”, “Bulldogs, more like peeing Poodles” and finally “NJIT beat Bryant? Who the F*** cares!”
First of all, we’re in the rebuilding process. We’ve just become a University and starting playing division 1 schools. I mean we only lost to Maryland by 19 points. Now that’s something we can work on. The sky is the limit, we can only get better from here. Alright, enough with the clichés, I had to get down to the source of it all. So I made a phone call to a friend we once called the Prince of Pawtucket. An alumni of Bryant who not only played hoops but moved like a graceful Acie Earl. His name was Georgie “High Tops”. Since he lived in Rhode Island, I figured he’d have the scoop of what actually went down Wednesday night.
George was out eating some baklava down in Pawtucket when I disturbed him. He quickly turned to code language once I addressed the issue of the Bryant loss. He said, “Yeah I know what went down, it was a business thing.” A business thing…what do you mean? “They paid off the President of Bryant, Bulldogs being a business school…we took a dive.” And there it was. Now it all makes sense. Being new to Division 1, we are paying our dues even if that means giving the worst team in the country a victory. I knew Bryant made dreams happen but never the impossible come true. This compares to the time Barack Obama walked on water in D.C., if you can dream it you can do it. So don’t worry fellow Bryant alumni’s, we’ve only just begun to bring the terror to the D-1 basketball. Remember, anything is possible.
*Bryant President told me to go screw and never call him again when questioned, story probably not true.
Mark McGwire did steroids. We know this. This isn’t a big deal anymore. Silence is admission of guilt, and when was the last time you heard Mark McGwire speak? That’s right, it was when he pleaded the fifth like a Chappelle’s show skit. Well, in a story that’s about as tired and used up as a hooker at a 1994 house party at Michael Irvin’s house, Mark McGwire’s younger brother Jay is making headlines (more like footnotes) with a proposed book that details brother Mark’s steroid use. Big whoopty-do. It should be noted that Jay and Mark are estranged and Jay claims that he introduced Mark to ‘roids after Mark saw Jay win a bodybuilding contest. Jay’s looking for a payday and that’s where the FlyMaster’s ire gets raised.
Assaults on filial piety, the sanctity of the family, and sibling bonds are the lowest of the low. Rats are dealt with pretty severely in prison, and thus they should be karmically retributed against with the utmost impunity when they betray their family. All families bicker, fight, become estranged, burn each other’s houses, beat each other’s puppies, but that all stays in the family. That’s rule number one. Jay McGwire broke the golden rules of being a family member and in his meager attempts to capitalize on his brother’s demons only make him a demon of higher caliber. What’s next, Jay? Are you going to rat out your other brother Dan, one of the worst NFL QB busts in the last 30 years, for being a hideously bad gunslinger who was a product of the San Diego State offense of the late 1980s? You jerk!
Please allow the FlyMaster to make an open statement to the FlySister. FlySister, if you ever rat me out on all the ridiculously dumb, dimwitted, nefarious stuff the FlyMaster is responsible for the FlyMaster will find you. Find you he will. However, if you choose to write some memoir of FlyMaster’s foibles please ask for more than $100K, although I doubt you’d receive more than $4 bucks, a six pack of Pabst, and some gummy bears. But, on the real side, the FlySister understands this agreement as an unsaid code of siblings. That’s what makes Jay McGwire even more of a douchetard. He didn’t even realize the idiocy and ignorance of his actions. Remember people, nothing is more important than maintaining belief in your family members even if they’re a walking petri dish of HGH, horse testosterone, and cow urine. Back acne and rages aside, he’s still your brother.
FlyMaster Signing Off…For Now!