Race Weekend Central

Happy Hour: Was the Hail Melon Ball Dropped?

On this week’s episode of the Happy Hour podcast, Frontstretch‘s Bryan Nolen, Michael Massie and Vito Pugliese break down how NASCAR failed to capitalize on its most viral moment in recent memory: Ross Chastain‘s Hail Melon at Martinsville Speedway last fall.

But first, the guys debate whether Denny Hamlin really is the best ever without a championship after a DNF at Homestead-Miami Speedway left him on the wrong side of the cut line. They each give their take on who is the best without a title.

Then the roundtable talks whether the playoff system should be changed if Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr. miss out on the Championship 4 after having incredible regular seasons.

See also
Did You Notice?: Chase Elliott on Wrong Side of Hendrick Hierarchy With Another NASCAR Title Closing In

Finally, in the YouTube portion of the show, Nolen, Massie and Pugliese were all fans of NASCAR long before they covered it and they each had a favorite driver. In light of Jeff Gordon‘s recent comments about how teams need fans to become fans of them and not the drivers, the trio each detail what they did after their favorite driver retired.

Listen here or on all podcast platforms.

About the author

Michael Massie joined Frontstretch in 2017 and has served as the Content Director since 2020. Massie, a Richmond, Va., native, has covered NASCAR, IndyCar, SRX and the CARS Tour. Outside of motorsports, the Virginia Tech grad and Green Bay Packers minority owner can be seen cheering on his beloved Hokies and Packers.

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Bryan Nolen is the Operations Manager and Multimedia Director for Frontstretch.com. He also hosts the Bringing the Heat with Bryan Nolen Podcast and occasionally makes appearances on The Happy Hour Podcast. He has a Sportscasting degree from the Dan Patrick School of Sportscasting. He resides in Boise, Idaho, with his wife, his French Bulldog Archer and two rabbits.

Follow him on Twitter @TheBryanNolen

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Vito is one of the longest-tenured writers at Frontstretch, joining the staff in 2007. With his column Voice of Vito (monthly, Fridays) he’s a contributor to several other outlets, including Athlon Sports and Popular Speed in addition to making radio appearances. He forever has a soft-spot in his heart for old Mopars and presumably oil-soaked cardboard in his garage.

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