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September 2, 2014

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Who’s the new “Mr. Excitement?”

NASCAR driver Jimmy Spencer’s aggressive driving style won him the nickname “Mr. Excitement” when he drove in the Cup series. Is there a new “Mr. Excitement” on the horizon for this season?

O.K., I know what your thinking. Kyle Busch is “Mr. Excitement,” and he isn’t new to the series. I agree that Busch resembles that nickname, but the guy I had in mind is Brad Keselowski.

Last year’s dust-up between Keselowski and Denny Hamlin during the November Nationwide race at Phoenix, demonstrated Keselowski’s brash attitude. After being tapped by Hamlin, Keselowski retaliated by hitting Hamlin twice. The second hit sent Hamlin spinning. This may go beyond the limits of the type of driving NASCAR had in mind when it said the drivers can “have at it.” After all, cars can’t be used as weapons. The question is, how much leeway will NASCAR give to aggressive drivers?

Personally, I can’t wait to see how NASCAR’s new approach plays out. Hopefully, we’ll see more physical driving this year and, as a result, more emotion in the sport. The past few seasons have been too antiseptic for the fans, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that corporate sponsors don’t interfere with the drivers’ newfound freedom.

Who knows, maybe we’ll get lucky and there will be a huge rivalry between Kyle Busch and the new “Mr. Excitement.”

This week's StockcarToon pokes fun at complaining fans.

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