Saturday, March 31, 2007

Readers: A Response To Your Anger Over Eric Medlen's Passing

First of all, thank you for taking the time to express to me your frustration and anger with the media coverage of the untimely passing of Eric Medlen. I am an avid fan of the NHRA, and have been for over thirty years. It has also been my pleasure to have been involved with the NHRA in many capacities during my television career. They are truly a wonderful group of people.

The sentiments expressed to me about television's inability to cover, explain, and then follow-up on Eric's death are also shared by me. As we know, there is currently a significant credibility gap between the TV groups producing the events in the field, and the studio production staffs at the cable network news shows.

Even though ESPN hosts the NHRA coverage, and does an outstanding job, that does not translate to a base of racing knowledge back in Bristol, CT. Even though SPEED dedicates an hour to The SPEED Report, it does not increase the understanding or racing knowledge of the current hosts. Even though CNN covers the world, that does not allow them to understand how personal an incident like this becomes to those of us who live through racing...and how we yearn to know...why?

In my early days, we lost racers through a wide variety of problems that have been addressed, and fixed, over the years. Today, we are much more deeply upset when someone we value loses their life in racing. We all believe that these things are now, somehow, prevented from happening by our modern technology.

In time, the NHRA will release the information about how and why a normal testing run at an approved and safe facility can turn so fast. In the meantime, we can only continue to provide our support through the internet racing sites and There are several moving video tributes created by fans available on by typing Eric Medlen in the search function.

At this time, I am going to continue to limit the content of this site to NASCAR racing for the season. I greatly appreciate the fact that so many concerned people turned to The Daly Planet after this situation occurred. Perhaps, in the future, we will expand this media project to include TV coverage of other forms of racing. In the meantime, thank you again for taking the time to email us, and I join all of you in mourning this loss of a fine young man.