Collaboration is a wonderful thing. Consider baseball defense: Alan Trammell and Lou Whitaker were both individually great ball players, but together they were the best double-play combo of all time. Each was terrific, but the two together defined the idea of teamwork.
Life is not an individual pursuit. Humans are a social species. We live together, we gather with friends, we form families. We work together; intense amounts of cooperation and the passing of vital information are essential to making any business work. Especially a racing team.
Jim: Hey Bob, Ford wants us to get started on the new Fusion for the next Cup season.
Bob: Alrighty then. When are they delivering a Fusion for us to work off of?
Jim: They ain't, Bob. It's not actually a Ford Fusion. It's just a tube frame with a shell that looks like a Fusion.
Jim: You're new here, ain't ya?
Bob: Um...I started yesterday. I'm supposed to help with the suspension tuning.
Jim: Alright then, lemme learn ya a little somethin'. Y'see, NASCAR cars ain't actually stock. They got almost nothin' in common with the cars on the dealer lots that they share names with. They're all pretty much just giant engines strapped to a race transmission an' rear-wheel-drive drivetrain. All that stuff is dropped into a tubular frame that passes for an actual chassis, then we bolt the seats an' roll cages an' stuff inside o' that. Finally, we make a fiberglass shell that looks just enough like the original production car so that people can recognize which brand is which after their first six-pack o' Bud Light.
Bob: But that's not the same as them being stock. How can they be called stock is they're nothing like the stock production cars?
Jim: Well, they's gots restrictions, like how much power an engine can have an' how much the cars can weigh and all that. It makes a level playin' field.
Bob: Wait...so how the hell is it 'stock car' racing if the cars ain't stock?
Jim: Oh, gotcha. Stickers.
Bob: Like sponsor's stickers?
Jim: No, ya idjit. Those ain't stickers, those are decals.
Bob: Dammit, Jim, I'm a mechanic, not a sticker expert!
Jim: I just said they're called decals, not stickers.
Bob: But we were talking about stickers, Jim.
Jim: Oh yeah. What about 'em?
Bob: How in Hell do stickers make these race cars into stock cars?
Jim: Oh, right! Well ya see, once ya put the body shell on, then ya start puttin' on the stickers of all the recognizable parts of the car.
Bob: Well how do you get those stickers?
Jim: Oh, easy. You make the stickers out of stock photos. Stock photos of the headlights, stock photos of the taillights, stock photos of the badge, stock photo of the grill, stock photos of the fog lights-
Bob: Jim, just stop.
Jim: What's wrong?
Bob: I'm not drunk enough for this shit.
Jim: Welcome to NASCAR.
Photo Credit: Chuck Welch