I hope everyone enjoyed the Day O’ Racing.
The day started out with the Indy 500. It was nice to see Jim Nabors back this year singing the traditional “Back Home in Indiana”. He was sick last year and was unable to make the festivities.
Congratulations to Scott Dixon for winning his first Indy 500 and doing it from the pole. Say what you want about Danica Patrick, but she isn’t afraid to let you know how it is going to be. After getting crashed into along pit road by Scott Briscoe with 29 laps to go. She got out of the car and headed towards Briscoe’s pit. Luckily for Briscoe, Danica was directed away before she got to his pit stall. It would have been interesting to see what she would have done and said once she got there. In the words of Danica…“Probably best I didn’t get down there anyway.”
After the Indy 500 was over, I didn’t have to wait much longer for the festivities to begin for the Coke 600. I always get chills during the prerace festivities on Memorial Day weekend. I loved the bagpipes playing amazing grace and the ultimate salute to our members of the military, the 21-gun salute and the playing of Taps. I wish the people on pit lane would put their hands over the hears when the Pledge of Allegiance and the Star Spangled Banner is played. It just bothers me a little bit.
Now onto the race…
The race started out with Kyle Busch leading the field to the green just as he did last Saturday night. Early on Kyle Busch began having alternator issues, but as we all know this is a long race and anything can happen. First part of the race was pretty much uneventful. I have to give driving props to Juan Pablo. He spun out without hitting anyone and right across the Circle K logo “I Love This Place”. I just had to chuckle when I saw this. I felt bad for Brian Vickers. He had a great running car, but you just can’t run a race car on three tires. His tire bouncing all over the place reminded me of that McDonalds commercial with Larry Bird and Michael Jordan shooting hoops…Vickers tire when off the track, off #38’s hood, off the catch fence, over the infield wall, onto the camper roof…nothing but net! I thought someone was going to have a great souvenir, but the NASCAR people came to take it away. Party poopers!
The next part of the race begin to fall into place. Nothing really exciting happened. Kyle was still having voltage problems but still making his way around the track and staying somewhat competitive. Sorry for all you Dale Jr. fans (well sort of). I can’t say that I was upset by this chain of events. Dale Jr. cut a tire and ended up scraping the wall. I don’t know if JJ Yeley’s spotter let him know about Dale Jr…but dude…you had to have seen Jr. up against the wall. Oh yea…it was mentioned that this was probably going to ruin Junior’s chance to get a win. During this caution, Kyle came in to get his battery switched out.
Once again…Jimmie was making his way through the field and he eventually got to the front of the pack. This didn’t surprise me one bit, because Jimmie has a way of rising to the top, but just like his teammate it wouldn’t be Jimmie’s night. Jimmie’s engine decided it had had enough racing for the evening. With about 50 to go Jimmie’s night was over. Once again the face of the race changed again.
Well…guess who was in position to lead the race? That’s right Tony Stewart. I held my breathe though. With the way things were working out, I was hoping Tony could pull it through to the end. He came into the pits around lap 13 to top off with gas so he could make it to the end of the race. And just like Junior and Jimmie, it wasn’t going to be Smoke’s night. Damn tires! I guess that bitch Karma came back to bite Tony is butt. I think I said every kind of “not so lady-like” words at the television set. With this set back, this gave the lead to none other than last week’s winner Kasey Kahne. With his victory, Kasey became only the 6th driver to win both the All-Star Race and the Coke 600 in the same year. Oh by the way…Kasey broke his 52 race winless streak tonight as well! And Junior STILL hasn’t won.
With all the problems and struggles tonight, Kyle finished 3rd, Jeff Gordon finished 4th, and Junior finished 5th. Where did Tony finish? 18th. Ugh! I have to give a high five to Elliott Sadler (8th), David Reutiman (10th), Bobby Labonte (11th), David Ragan (12th) and former Indy 500 winner Sam Hornish (13th). Way to go guys!
Thanks for the memories Humpy! You may be stepping down, but your impact on NASCAR will be felt for years to come.
One more thing…
There were couple of commercials that I have to say made me laugh. I love the Holiday Inn commercial where Jeff Burton is asked questions by random people. My favorite question, “How come you don’t have a mullet?” The look on his face when asked the question is hilarious. The latest Vitamin Water commercial with Carl Edwards was funny. Gotta love Ralph Macchio. I am going to assume this was paying homage to his most role as the Karate Kid. But of course these commercials don’t even come close to this one by Budweiser.
This commercial does remind me of the first race I went to at TMS. I don’t recall who was on stage at the time performing during the prerace show, but when soldiers were walking out to prepare for other prerace festivites, everyone in the stands stood up and cheered for them including myself. As we continue to move throughout the rest of the night and tomorrow, remember the real reason for Memorial Day. If you see a soldier or know a veteran, stop and say “Thank You”. I would like to say thank you to my Uncle Cecil, Uncle Junior, Uncle Bill, Uncle Chris, my cousin Joe, my father-in-law, and my father. Thank you for serving honorably for our country. I love you all.