So what exactly is this ‘Race Team Alliance?’ Is it an owners union? It sure seems like a Union, but in a phone interview with the Associated Press, Chairman Rob Kauffman says, not so fast.
"Calling it a union would be incorrect. A union would be for employees," said Kauffman. "The right way to characterize it would be a 'business alliance.' Unions are about employees directly trying to negotiate something. The RTA is pooling together to look at things we can be doing better.”
In case you missed the news the sport’s nine biggest teams formed this ‘alliance’ on Monday. It contains of NASCARs biggest teams and all of its stars. The say the idea is to come up with ways to lower costs and to create a single voice for the owners.
To me this begs a couple of questions. Is this a slippery slope toward to the troubles that sprouted up in open wheel in the 1990’s. This group has all the power in sport. The top owners and its biggest stars. If they were to decide they didn’t like what they saw and decided to take their steering wheels and come home. What would be left? The top drivers on a team this is not in the RTA? Casey Mears who is 23rd in the standings and has one career, AJ Allmendinger 25th win no career wins and Martin Truex, Jr. 26th with two career victories.
And secondly, what about the smaller teams. Why are there none of them in the RTA? Kauffman, who is also co-owner of Michael Waltrip racing says they will eventually be let in. But who has a better grasp on how to save money and get results than say a Furniture Row Racing? You may remember they became the first single car team to ever make the chase last season.
It is far too early to pass judgment on this group, obviously. And only they know their intentions. But the whole thing does make me a little uneasy.