NASCAR Will Now Penalize Wall-Riding Technique Popularized In Video Games
NASCAR is taking steps to discourage a driving technique popularized in part by video games. For anyone just catching up, on the final lap of a huge race in 2022, NASCAR driver Ross Chastain spun his car into fifth gear, slammed it into the wall and passed several drivers to finish fourth and qualify for the championship final. Chastain said he learned the “wall-ride” technique by playing an old NASCAR game for GameCube.
Well, unfortunately for Chastain and any other drivers looking to try the same move, it’s now a NASCAR penalized technique. In a blog post, NASCAR said Chastain’s decision “provided an exciting finish” to the event, but came with a safety risk that NASCAR is not comfortable with.
A NASCAR rule states that “safety is a top priority”, and as such, “any violation considered to compromise the safety of an event or pose a dangerous risk to the safety of competitors, officials, spectators or ‘other people is treated with the highest degree of seriousness.’
Going forward, NASCAR officials will issue a time penalty for attempting a “dangerous maneuver” like the one Chastain pulled off in 2022.
“Basically, if there is an act that we believe compromises the safety of our competitors, officials, spectators, we will take it seriously. And we will penalize for this act in the future,” said the director of NASCAR, Elton Sawyer.
At the time, Chastain said, “I played NASCAR 2005 a lot on GameCube. I never knew if it would actually work. [in real life]. I did this when I was eight years old. I just made the choice. I grabbed fifth gear…and fully engaged. Once against the wall, I practically let go of the steering wheel…”
The tactic absolutely worked, but as you can tell from watching the dramatic video, things could have gone horribly wrong for Chastain and others involved in the race. Back then, however, there were no rules against it. Even so, other runners criticized the move, saying it was “just a bad look”.
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