Here are two somewhat different definitions of what is “sport” that may help answer the eternal question: should NASCAR be considered a sport?
sport [spawrt, spohrt]
- an athletic activity requiring skill or physical prowess and often of a competitive nature, as racing, baseball, tennis, golf, bowling, wrestling, boxing, hunting, fishing, etc. dictionary.com
- an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment. oxforddictionaries .com
What’s Your Answer to Whether NASCAR Should Be Considered a Sport?
The two dictionary definitions listed above highlight the basis of the dispute, raged by NASCAR drivers, fans and critics alike about NASCAR’s worthiness of being a sport.
If you look closely at the two definitions, you’ll notice a glaring difference in just the first three words. The Oxford Dictionary definition omits the adjective “athletic” before the noun “activity”.
Many people who feel that NASCAR races aren’t a sport point to the lack of athleticism involved. Their argument goes something like this. How can any activity that involves sitting and driving a car, only turning left in the majority of races, be considered a sport? Where’s the athleticism?
Proponents of NASCAR auto racing as a true sport have a somewhat different view. They point to the difficulty of racing a car at speeds approaching 200 miles per hour, often for 500 miles, as being a very athletic feat. They are also quick to point out that NASCAR isn’t a driver-only sport. The pit crew make it a team sport as their speed and athleticism during pit stops helps win races.
Where does that leave the debate about NASCAR as a sport? It’ll probably rage on for as long as NASCAR is around because, very simply, it’s up to each of us to decide for ourselves.
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If you enjoyed this post, check out our recent article on scenic drives near Toronto.