Monday, August 07, 2006

Who cares who won? The racing was great!

First things first. Speaking of Superheroes, racing great Benny Parsons, having been diagnosed with lung cancer--a type of which has a 20% survival rate--showed up for his commentator job at NBC looking and sounding good. I am backing Benny 100% and pulling for him with everything I have, prayers, faith, spirit--anything it takes to help him pull through and beat the odds.
Also, I hope we are all pulling for Bobby Hamilton, who is in the midst of radiation and chemo therapy, and helping us feel positive about his recovery from head and neck cancer by showing up at the track to get back into whatever he is able to do concerning racing. Attitude is 99% of recovery, and Hamilton, another true Superhero, has an excellent attitude.
Congratulations to Jeff Burton on his--correct me if I'm wrong--third pole this season. I have a lot of faith in this man, for he has really given RCR, including his teammates, a step up.
I like IRP (Indianapolis Raceway Park)--I refuse to call it O'RP, even if it sounds Irish--and the Busch and Truck races there are always exciting there. The CTS races are normally pretty exciting anyway, but Friday night's race was exceptional. It's a .667-mile oval, and the racing there is reminiscent of the Fair Grounds races of my childhood, except with higher-powered cars. I didn’t matter to me who won, in the end, for both the Busch and the Truck series races were outstanding. I love short track racing, but IRP is really cool.
The Brickyard (Allstate) 400 is another of the best races on the NASCAR Nextel Cup circuit. As I write this, there are less than fifty laps to go in what has been a very good race. But, I have to say it; I'm kinda hoping that Jimmie Johnson doesn't win this one. Matt Kenseth, one of my favorite drivers, and probably the most underrated driver in the field, has been leading, and Igor just passed him. Still, thirty laps is a long way at the big, 2.5-mile squarval. Johnson's final pit stop, under green with 34 laps to go, was flawless, though, and after the green flag pit stops, he continued to lead by 2 seconds. The tension is high. "Come on," I scream. "Somebody catch that man!"
It's what Jimmie Johnson does. With the luck he has, you just can't put a jinx on him. When he has problems early in the race, he just comes back stronger at the finish. You have to admire that.
Earlier in the race Johnson had tire rub problems and fell back in the field. Chad Knaus, his crew chief is a genius, and they fixed the car during the race, and there he is going for his first Indy win.
I feel so sad for Elliott Sadler. This poor guy just can't get a break, unless it's his car that breaks. Very early in the race, that's what happened, and Elliott, one of the best of the best, finishes last. Damn, I hope he gets a better ride next year.
My favorite Frank Zappa look-a-like, Boris Said, also had some bad luck in the first part of the race, and lost the rear end of the car. It was one of those hard crashes where you are just happy to see the driver walk away. Said can be a good driver--he's doing well with a single car team when he can qualify, and with some more experience as an oval driver, he could do well in the future.
I also feel bad for Jeremy Mayfield, another good driver who can't seem to buy good luck. He hasn't officially announced that he is leaving Everham, but it is pretty much a consensus that he will. I hope he gets a better ride next year, too.
Kasey Kahne looked like he could be a winner. He matched Jeff Burton, who led the most laps, pretty well through most of the race. He had a fast car, and the talent, but toward the end, some bad adjustments and bad luck in the pits set him back. On the last lap, he crashed, and did not even finish. It was a hard hit, head on to the wall, and we held our breaths as we waited for Kahne to get out of his car and walk away, which he did. Too bad for the cute little guy--who deserves an Indy win--that he didn't finish.
I would rather have seen Matt Kenseth win, but it's The Brickyard, and whoever wins, deserves it.
The Gordon drove a car with a paint scheme that matches what I think his image makeover should be. Black with a yellow splash on the hood. All he needs is, at least, a black cape, and maybe some shiny black over-the-calf boots. He also needs some better luck, if he is to make the top ten by the cut-off, five races away, for he had some bad mechanical problems throughout the race. I might actually like him better if he goes for the out and out bad guy image.
I was cheering for Dale Earnhardt, Jr, there near the end of the race, even though I knew he was going to lose the lead on old tires, because almost everyone else had a faster car. Still, he pulled out a sixth place finish, which is very good considering his up and down season.
So Jimmie Johnson takes the victory, and I am actually happy for him. Damn! The beer throwers have made it into the Hallowed Halls of the Brickyard. That's sacrilege. Not only is it bad sportsmanship, but also they are throwing The Sacrament on the ground, and profaning a Shrine. They should be banned. Forever. We don't need race fans like that. Simply booing would be just fine.
It's actually cool how Jimmie "Igor" Johnson reacted to the beer throwers. He stopped the car on his victory lap, dropped the checker flag, and got out of the car to retrieve it. It was almost as if he was daring the Infidels to hit him. I like that attitude.
All the other drivers and teams are happy to congratulate Johnson--Tony Stewart's crew even went up to Johnson's to do so, with Zippy Zippadelli, Smoke's crew chief, telling him this was a "special day." The Brickyard is simply awesome.
Even though ninth place in the point’s standings is still a precarious position, I have no doubts that Smoke will make the cut. Next week is Watkins Glenn, a road course, and I will not risk jinxing Stewart by saying anything else here.
I will now go to the "pornolizer" and use it to reread this post and have a good laugh.
"Go, Monkey Woman, Go!"


NoStaplesPlease said...

I know what you mean about the classic tracks, the old names. I miss the NASCAR from when I was growing up.

Not to get too activisty on you, but that's why I signed the petition opposing the Kentucky Speedway's lawsuit against NASCAR. If they won they would be taking away a series race from another track. Sure, I understand some things change, but a lawsuit is the LAST way to go about it. My $.02. Love the blog!

RevJim said...

No Staples,
Thanks for your kind comments. I don't think Kentucky will win, because ISC holds all the cards. I am surprised ISC hasn't already bought the track and shut it down, like they did with PPIR.
I think the deal is, unfortunately, that there is a two-division Cup Series in the future. I don't even want to think about it--it gives me a headache.