I Wanna Go Fast

Well, I know I abandoned everyone for a NASCAR race during the last weekend in June, but I’m afraid I’m abandoning you again this weekend. DHS should probably take my blog away from me.

For most of the pandemic, NASCAR wasn’t allowing fans into the tracks, which sucked. At the end of May. racetracks started opening up again. Pocono was not one of the tracks because our governor is a leftist a-hole. We searched for a race somewhat close, and decided to purchase tickets for the New Hampshire Motor Speedway. It’s about a six-hour ride, but it was the best we could do.

Shortly thereafter, Pocono decided to open up, so we got tickets to the Pocono race as well. My kids really like racing, and this was a chance to get them out of the house. The Pocono race was terrific, and it was Kevin’s first race. Today, the entire family will be at the track, and it will be Princess P and Mrs. Earp’s first race.

The only thing we’re concerned about is rain, as it’s in the forecast. Hopefully, they’ll get the races in – there are two today – and if it gets rained out, we would be able to get the same tickets for next year’s race… on the house.

Oh, I will have posts set up throughout the weekend.

Are You Trackin’ Me?

While there will be posts today and tomorrow, I will likely be scarce during the weekend. You see, for the first time in I don’t know how long, the boys and I are going to Pocono Raceway for a doubleheader NASCAR race. We would have brought the entire clan, but Julia has her second recital this evening.

(It’s okay, we’re taking the entire family to New Hampshire Motor Speedway in July.)

Despite some of the wokeness creeping into NASCAR, the kids and I still really enjoy racing, and when we realized we could snag some tickets, it was a no-brainer. It’s a two-hour ride to the track in the northern part of PA, and there is a Truck Series race at noon, and the Cup race at 3pm. It’ll be a long day, but it will also be Kevin’s first race. We’re in the second row, so it’ll certainly be loud enough.

I’ll have posts up for the weekend, and I’ll try to comment if I get a chance.

It was a very long day, with two pretty good races. Here’s the view from our seats. Turn up the volume.

The Noose Is Loose

By now you likely heard of the NASCAR incident at the Talladega Superspeedway this weekend. Bubba Wallce, the only African-American driver in the league, allegedly found a noose hanging from his garage pit stall on Saturday. Now, as a NASCAR fan since 1998, I wanted to abide by the seventy-two hour rule for racial incidents, since so many of them seem to be contrived.

Here is ESPN’s ridiculous take:

To the one(s) who thought they could dip into the tired, old 1934 or 1964 racist playbook and elicit fear by placing a symbol of hate — a noose, for heaven’s sake — in the garage stall of a Black race car driver, I really need to make sure you are paying attention to what I have to say to you.

Oh, and the grown adult or adults who spent hundreds of dollars to fly a “DEFUND NASCAR” banner and Confederate flag behind a plane over Talladega, you should listen up too. Same for you rednecks who drove a parade of pickups around the perimeter of the racetrack with that same flag flying out of the beds of your 4x4s. Or even you, who wandered onto the property at Sonoma Raceway and hung “a piece of twine tied in what appeared to be a noose” from a tree.

Have their been legitimate racial incidents during NASCAR’s seventy-two year history? Of course. Are there still “rednecks” who attend races? Certainly. It the sport or the fan-base filled with raging racists? Absolutely not. I know, because I have been to many, many races at tracks across the country (Pocono, Dover, Richmond, Daytona).

I can also tell you every time I have been to a race, the fans have been nothing but friendly to everyone of every creed and color. I have never seen a fight at a NASCAR race. Ever. Can the NFL say that?

My initial reaction was while this incident may have happened, I sincerely believe this is either a misunderstanding, or an outright hoax…

Continue reading “The Noose Is Loose”

Racing To Immortality

Jeff Gordon's Final Race

Gretzky, Elway, Ripken. I have had very few sports heroes in my lifetime, but those I had were class acts. My final sports hero, Jeff Gordon, participated in his last NASCAR race today. Gordon finished sixth at Homestead-Miami and finished third overall for the championship. It was not the result I would have preferred, but Gordon is going out at the top of his game.

I started watching NASCAR in 1998, the year Gordon won an incredible thirteen races on his way to his third championship. I always poo-pooed NASCAR and threw out the redneck cracks… until I went to a race. NASCAR is like the NFL – it’s a giant, all-day tailgate party. Unlike the NFL, you don’t see fistfights in the stands, the fans are courteous, and everyone has a great time. In 17 years, I have yet to see a fistfight at a NASCAR event. The people are just, different. Good different, but different.

Gordon finished third overall in NASCAR career wins (93), won four titles, and was instrumental in making NASCAR a mainstream sport. He was literally the face of NASCAR for two decades, and was always a class act. (And his wife, well… wow.) In my opinion, Gordon is the greatest driver of the modern era, with Dale Earnhardt a close second. I will miss seeing him on the track, but I feel blessed I could see such a talent perform his craft in person.

Thank you, Jeff, for everything.