Originally Posted by M3Now!
I think one mistake that's being made in the racing comments is the focus on "pure" driving skill vs. racing skill. F1 does require more accelerating, braking, understanding of the line around corners, etc, which you'd think means an F1 driver has better pure driving skills. But NASCAR requires more ability to handle a car in a bunch, reacting to others around you, reacting to the car moving (either by itself or with help), avoiding crashes, and jumping on opportunities to link up and pass others.
So maybe NASCAR is "less" about the car and more about successfully racing in a crowded environment, while F1 is "more" about the car, and less about the activities of others in the race. Both are equally intense racing, but require very different car skills?
Top Gear did a bit about NASCAR and interviewed a Formula 1 driver who also drove in Nascar. He felt pretty much the same way. There's no substitute for experience.
I can't find the precise clip yet, but here's some of the off air discussion.