Xfinity race – ugly! It was tough sitting in the stands and realizing at 5:00 p.m. we were not yet to the completion of the first stage of 30 laps. One and half hours and we are sitting on our second red of the day. This new five minute rule was being tested by some of the best in the business. I just have to wonder if this sport has changed so much because of Jeff Gordon that we are now rushing kids to the top instead of seasoning these young drivers. We all know that Jeff Gordon started early and made it to the top but he had TALENT!
Money is the root of all evil. Think about that for a second and realize money is what is keeping some of the top racing talent in the country from reaching the top. Could this be a problem for the sport at the NASCAR level? The way it is today, Dick Trickle would have no chance, none, zilch, would not even be looked at, to become a 48 year old rookie of the year, God rest his soul.
Enough on that subject – the racing was very good and exciting once we got past the second stage. Lots of planning, lots of maneuvering, lots of gamesmanship. Will just take you to the end with a green white checkered coming, listening to Austin Dillon, his grandfather, Richard Childress, came on the radio and said the best thing would be to push the 22 to the front and let the race be settled between them. Then switched to car #16, Ryan Reed, and heard his spotter tell him, since he was in the number one position and had inside/outside restart position selection, take the outside the #2 will give us the push we need! Don’t think any of the more experienced teams were counting on that maneuver but the final results proved what a great call that was as Reed took the win! Good job Ryan Reed!
Another Kansas City connection is here at the track, our own Fireman Richard Christy. He texted me the pictures he took of the truck race on Friday night, some of the best pictures anywhere of Matt Crafton upside down. Not only that during the night when most people are sleeping, Richard was running a broom scrubbing oil off the track, that folks is commitment! There are so many like Richard who work in the background to make our sport the great sport it has become, let’s learn to emphasize these people and get them the recognition they so deserve. Let’s face it there would not be a sport like this if not for the track owners, the officials, the fans, the pit crews, the safety crews, the maintenance crews, who support all these drivers!
Now off to the Daytona 500, let’s hope it is a great race and not what we have witnessed the last couple of days. The statement of the day heard on the escalator, “well if xfinity was 5 hours long do we expect an 8 hour 500?, I don’t need time for a nap in the middle of the races!