I think NASCAR driving seems more like a physical skill than an athletic skill. That's a pretty fine line, and definitely a semantical argument, but I associate NASCAR more with something like being a jet pilot. It definitely requires lots of skill, training, and there is a physical element to it, but it falls short of calling the participants athletes. NASCAR sort of seems more like a job that is very labor intensive, like a construction worker or shipbuilder or something like that.
If you say "no", you should have an Actual Reason... not one that's just a tautology or one based on a falsehood.
I suppose my opinion is bordering on "I know it when I see it" territory, but isn't that basically what this entire question is about? It's not like we're all going to collectively agree on a definition here, which pretty means that it's undefined and open to personal interpretation.