Wednesday, August 31, 2016

From "Kill the Umpire!" in "Casey at the Bat" to Dirt Late Model Racing's "Sue the Referee!"

Taunting sports officials has been a part of sport for a long time where Ernest Lawrence Thayer's “Casey at the Bat” had a spectator say, “Kill him!  Kill the umpire!”  Later we have seen real-life assaults on officials (including a few fatal football pitch incidents where an official was actually beaten to death) by unhappy players and or parents.

But now we have seen the ultimate in official taunting.  Instead of “Kill the umpire,” now we have “Sue the referee!”  In Bloomquist et al v. World Racing Group, Inc. et al, five dirt Late Model drivers and their teams have sued the sanctioning body of a dirt Late Model race at Ohio's Eldora Speedway, in addition to the track and its owner (Mr. Anthony W. Stewart) in New York Northern District Court, after five drivers were disqualified for illegal chemical treatment of tires, a violation of DIRTcar UMP rules prohibiting the practice to make tires softer, creating more grip, after the Dirt Late Model Dream race in June.  The illegal treatment resulted in a three-month suspension from World Racing Group events (UMP, DIRTcar, and World of Outlaws Sears Sprint Car and Late Model) for the competitors in question.  Bloomquist added insult to injury as the lead in the case, valued at $16.5 million, by charging his penalties damaged his reputation as a professional race car driver, with standing with sponsors being reduced by the disqualification and suspension in this year's Dirt Late Model Dream, and a disqualification in last year's Dirt Late Model Dream where he even charged the circuit's scales were underweight, in addition to the five drivers being unable to participate in World Racing Group (one of a few sanctioning bodies for dirt tracks) events for the severe violation

So instead of killing the umpire, as we learned in the poem, now we have sue the referee.  What absurd thing are we seeing next?

(Video:  Bloomquist's lawsuit charges the disqualification for a car 25 pounds too light was unmerited – this is the evidence from the official track video.)  

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