With the growth of environmental consciousness over the last three decades, major automobile racing circuits in the United States and around the world have started green initiatives. This article will provide an examination of recent press reports, United Nations studies, press releases, and research to consider whether these green initiatives have made a positive difference in terms of environmental impact, or whether they are changes with little substance designed to maintain the public’s goodwill. Particularly relevant is the debate over the use of cleaner-burning fuels such as ethanol. Specifically, the question exists of whether the use of fuels with cleaner emissions outweighs problems that arise from these fuels’ production. Public perceptions of these green initiatives will also be discussed, as major racing series, such as NASCAR and the Indy Racing League, publicize initiatives in marketing efforts. Using mostly anecdotal evidence, this article is an analysis of recent literature on the subject. Implications of questions relating automobile racing to various needs for natural resources around the world are broad, as consumers, scientists, and governments must consider the long-term effects of recent drives to reduce petroleum consumption and pollution.
In this article, we review the major dimensions of the sports celebrity literature on David Beckham. We identify first and second ages of Beckham’s celebrity, describing a shift from the emphasis on his status as a sports star toward a mainstream celebrity that resonates more broadly than his original career, specifically in terms of fashion, family, and lifestyle. Throughout both stages, however, there has been a focus on his representation of masculinity, particularly in terms of how he both reflected and contributed to transformations in masculinity toward a more “metrosexual” norm. We then argue that the emphasis on Beckham’s athletic prowess will return to centre stage in the next phase of his celebrity. Although this may be understood chronologically as his “third” phase of stardom, we suggest that it will emerge because Beckham has reached the threshold of the sociological, rather than chronological, “Third Age.” Using the example of Beckham, we argue that the key components that ageing celebrities model for the Third Age have a keen affinity with the qualities associated with sports stars. We conclude, therefore, that we will see an increasing use of ageing and retired sports celebrities to model and promote Third Age identities and lifestyles to ageing consumers, in a way that reintroduces their athleticism as central to their celebrity status.
Although some research has demonstrated an association between sports activity and lower levels of alcohol consumption, contradictory research suggests alcohol use may be typical for adolescents involved in sport. To address these opposing findings and the current lack of Canadian data, this study examined whether adolescent drinking behaviors differed by gender, type, frequency, or context of sporting involvement in one school system in western Canada. Self-report questionnaires were completed by 497 grade 10 students. Results demonstrated that males reported consuming more alcohol than females. Student participation in sports outside of school was related to increased alcohol consumption. Students participating in hockey, boxing, or wrestling outside of school self-reported consuming significantly more alcohol than students who did not participate in these sports. Gender by sport interactions were also found. These findings suggest participation in sport is not a protective factor against alcohol use for all youth in this sample. Instead, there appear to be differences in alcohol use specific to sport, gender, context, and frequency of sporting involvement. This study informs coaches, educators, and parents regarding youth drinking behaviors in relation to sport, guide further research, and aid in the development of educational material in sport development programs.