Nepotism or Family Tradition? A Study of NASCAR Drivers

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Peter Groothuis Ph.D., Professor (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
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Abstract: Of the drivers who raced National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) cup series in 2005, 23 out of 76 had family connections. Family career following is not unique to NASCAR, it is common in many careers such as law, politics, business, agriculture, medicine, and entertainment. Children enter the same career as their parents for reasons of physical-capital transfer, human-capital transfer, brand-name loyalty transfer, and nepotism. Using a panel data of NASCAR drivers from the last 30 years, the authors test to see which model best explains career following in racing. Their results suggest that nepotism is not present in the career length. Sons do not have longer careers than nonfamily-connected drivers, given the same level of performance. The authors do find that fathers end their careers earlier than performance indicates. Their results also show if nepotism exists, it occurs only with second brothers who follow their first brothers into racing.

Additional Information

Groothuis, P.A. and Groothuis, J.D. (2008) Nepotism or Family Tradition?: A Study of NASCAR Drivers. Journal of Sports Economics, 9(3): 250-265. (June 2008) Published by SAGE. doi:10.1177/1527002507309990
Language: English
Date: 2008

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