Now I understand why people say what they say, but hear me out. Competition among series is good for the sport of drag racing. It's just as important as cars competing against each other.
Let's look back at a time when competition was not good for an industry. Sorry I can't seem to find one. The reason for that is because it's never good not to have competition. All you have to do is look at what happened when the real FFW closed it's doors. Drivers went home and the NMRA was able to do whatever they wanted because there was/is no competition. Another example of this, for you wrestling fans is when WCW closed it's doors and WWE was the only big game left in town. The product suffered because of a lack of competition.
Competition breeds success. Fact is the if the NHRA has competition the product would be even better than it is today. If NMRA had competition like it did in the early 2000's the product would be better today. If PDRA had like competition, the product would be better than it is today. This is not to say that the product isn't good. This isn't to saying that the racers and cars aren't amazing. This is to say that everything can always be better.
The purpose is to drive fans and racers to the track for a couple of days and put on an exciting event that is affordable. To many times, organizations have neglected the fact that this is a business, and it's a business about making money. I stated in previous articles what I think of pay structures and of entry fees for both drivers and spectators. And again, this isn't the early 2000's anymore. This is a day and age where people have a million reasons not to go to a race, one of which is the entertainment value.
When you have a product that rivals another product of the same type it forces one or the other to make decisions about the product. Should product A lower prices, keep prices the same but add features, develop a new product, or just sit by and hope that people will buy product A over product B just because. The only true exception to this rule is Apple and their products. I think they could charge $500 for a thumbtack and people would buy it.
What I hear a lot of the time in the media from fans and racers is about the expenses. From a fan perspective, don't ever tell me that it's too much. People are spending hundreds to go to concerts and other events, but not spending that money in drag racing. The reason is because to them the product isn't worth the investment. There is not a valuable brand recognition there that will justify spending their money on. For a second, let's take a look at someone who is the gold standard from entertainment value in drag racing and that is Donald Long. Yes, he is loved by most and hated by some, but the fact is that his place is placed to the gills for an event. Some doubters say it's because it's a big sideshow. The fact is that it's entertainment value is through the roof! When you are talking about entertainment value in drag racing that means the racing has to be amazing, the smack talk has to be strong, and the money has to be solid. It also means that it should be affordable. It will cost you over $100 per person to go to a weekend at an NHRA event, it will cost you $95 to go to some four day NMRA events, yet it will cost you less than $60 to go to Donald's week long event.
After reading that you should understand what value is. Value, in the mind of the consumer is when they are getting what they believe to be an amazing product at a discounted, or value rate. The same thought process can be said for movie goers. Chances are that you aren't going to spend $15 a ticket to go see some random film that doesn't seem to have value, but you can bet that you are going to wait in line for a day and a half to see the new Star Wars movie at that same $15 or even if it was $25 you would. It's the perceived value of the product or service that you are receiving.
The reason that Donald's races do well is because he isn't stupid. He understands the value that he presents to the consumers. He knows that there are other great races out there like OSCR, YB Nats, WSN, World Cup, etc. And these other promoters know that they have to bring value as well and they do a really great job at it. It's a competition between not only the promoters, but a competition within themselves to make the next event even better.
There are three series in my mind that have no competition at all in the U.S. and that's NHRA, PDRA, & NMRA/NMCA. Now why is that? Are people scared to compete against each other? We live in a world of competition. Drag race is competition. Yet there seems to be reason why no one will compete against these series. While I know that the NHRA is more of a monopoly than anything else because of their track ownership along with their corporate backing, but the other two, there is no reason that PDRA and NMRA/NMCA don't have competition.
You will have those that say having a competing series just hurts themselves and the other series because there are too many races. Well guess what, you are 100% incorrect. You assume by saying that, there is an interesting in swapping back and forth. The objective of one is to have a better product at a better price than the other. If you look back at the Pro 5.0 days of old, the FFW racers didn't worry about crossing over to NMRA and vise versa. You were either or and not both most of the time. So stop with the uneducated excuses. If there is competition it creates rivals and discussion. You have people arguing which is better and who has the better product, the faster cars, the better events, etc. This is exactly what drag racing needs. Those that say competition doesn't breed success are absolutely wrong.
So next time you see something on the internet that challenges your thoughts about a product and suggests competition, why not look at it from this perspective. Competition will in fact force your product to improve, and if it doesn't than your product wasn't made to last in the first place because it wasn't designed to handle competition.