Tradition. On Sunday, we learned that tradition means something. We learned it is actually worth waiting for its return, though why it took NASCAR a decade to solve the hot, muggy conditions of a day race in early September by simply moving it to the evening still boggles the mind.
The weather was nice this past weekend up in my neck of the woods. Sadly, I paid the price for a root canal. No sleep Friday night. Zip for Saturday night. Sunday? The feature race was from Loudon. However, just as I rarely hurt after a visit to the dentist, maybe Loudon would go against type and be just wonderful. A race for the ages. Damn it, I deserved it.
Popular. Iconic. A “must be in” race. If that is what you were looking for, you were disappointed. A 37-car field was the smallest in 21 years. Tight, pack racing, the kind that leaves you swooning each and every lap. If that is what you were looking for, sorry, Sonoma is coming up next weekend. No, this week it was Michigan.
Pocono has a great name, a long tri-cornered track, but visually the action there is not exactly stimulating. To paraphrase Stacy Musgraves, round and round they go, but trash on the grill really blows.
Martinsville might have started a wee bit boring, got real interesting in the second half, then went plain nuts at the end. Jeff Gordon, the star on this day, was leading, trying to fend off team-mate Jimmie Johnson for the win with three laps remaining.
Watching Loudon on Sunday was a whole lot like watching Shawshank Redemption. I have seen bits and pieces of that movie, maybe, a couple of dozen times or more. The first half of the New Hampshire race had me watching nothing but our favorites of this year over and over and over.
The Chase continued on Sunday, at the iconic Kansas Speedway for the legendary Hollywood Casino 400. The race formerly and memorably known as the Protection One 400, the Banquet 400 Presented by ConAgra Foods, the LifeLock 400, the Camping World RV 400 presented by Coleman, and the Price Chopper 400 presented by Kraft Foods has been making memories since 2001.
In NASCAR, it is also all about family. It was started by a family and has featured such families as the Pettys and Allisons. We were thrilled by their success and crushed by their tragedies. They were and remain a part of us.
“Stay on the bottom, stay in line, and they can’t pass us.” For 199 laps, Darrell Waltrip’s observation of the 2016 Daytona 500 was dead on. Then, it became dead wrong.
Last week I wrote that California wasn't your daddy's NASCAR venue. I was wrong. It turned out to be not only your daddy's but your grandpappy's as well. Both would have loved what they saw, be it from a 1953, 1983, or 2013 perspective.