Which Carmaker Really Cares The Most About Motorsport?

"On any given weekend, there's more Mazdas on the road-race tracks of America than any other brand of vehicle." So Mr. Dempsey tells us in the oft-repeated Mazda commercial. It sounds good and may be true. But is it relevant?

We've asked the always loquacious and often-times polarizing Jack Baruth, the author of SpeedSportLife's "Avoidable Contact," reigning champion in the high-stakes game of auto forum trolling and three-time runner-up for the "Color Blind Drivers of America Annual Achievement Award" to step in this week on Question of the Day. — Ed.

As a club racer and occasional Grand-Am competitor, I'm up to my ears in Miatas every other weekend. There are also a number of high-profile open-wheel series which rely on Mazda rotaries and Mazda-branded Duratec fours. Still, Mazda is conspicuously absent from the two biggest shows out there (NASCAR and Formula 1). And there are plenty of other manufacturers who have a strong presence across the racing community.

What matters more: paying $500 contingencies to autocrossers, or spending the eight-figure sum to bring Michael Schumacher back to the F1 grid? If you had to throw your support to a particular carmaker based solely on their involvement in motorsports, whom would you chose? Personally, I'd choose The New Chrysler, but I'm biased: when I'm not pulling Zanardi-esque moves down in the inside of the Corkscrew in somebody else's MX-5, I race a Plymouth Neon.

(QOTD is your chance to answer the day's most pressing automotive questions and experience the opinions of the insightful insiders, practicing pundits and gleeful gearheads that make up the Jalopnik commentariat. If you've got a suggestion for a good "Question Of the Day" send an email to tips at jalopnik dot com.)

Photo Credit: Leo Chou