Monday, February 15, 2010

Going Fast


I have always enjoyed racing...whether go karts, snowmobiles, motorcycles, boats or is thrilling. Perhaps, in a different life, this is something that I could have done full-time, as I just enjoy the thrill going fast...sort of a metaphor for life, it would seem. :-) I do have the goal of doing a drive-around as part of Texas Motor Speedway's program at some point...but it will have to wait for now. I will have to continue to be happy to do so, virtually, on the computer...and to write about it.

I have watched Nascar racing for as long as I can remember...back to when I was a teen. This past weekend at Daytona was about as exciting a weekend of racing that I can remember. This is due, in part, to rule changes on the part of the Nascar governing body to make cars faster and more able to move around and pass. This is appealing to the fans, who disliked the sterile races of the past few years where restrictor plated cars (on their carburetors to slow them down) would go around the biggest, fastest tracks all together in a pack. This would result in very little action until someone would would make a mistake and trigger a big wreck...ugh. Despite a pothole in the greatest and grandest track delaying the action yesterday, the racing was fast and furious. The result was nice guy, Jamie McMurray (who showed that there is still crying in Nascar, even though there isn't any in baseball :-), getting a big push from friend, Greg Biffle, in the end to win the race. This was a good a racer, who has been deemed to be on the down side of his career, hooked up in the off season with owner Chip Ganassi (who needed a driver with Martin Truex's departure) and won the sports most prestigious race -- pretty cool. A quick shout out to Junior, who finished second...hopefully, the start of a better year for him.

I will take a moment to comment on Danica Patrick. I am happy that she brings some attention to Nascar...and she significantly helped to elevate the viewership and spectatorship for the minor leagues Nationwide race on Saturday. I find it distasteful, however, that she has to seek to bring so much attention to a sex symbol with her commercials and the like. I understand that this is 90% of the public's appeal for her...yet, let's see what kind of racer she will be.

I also have been a long time fan of the Winter Olympics, even preferring them to the summer games. Much of this has to do with, once again...going fast. I love watching downhill skiing, bobsledding, speed skating, and the luge. Like many other people, I am saddened by the death of the luger from Georgia. It really brought a melancholy start to the games. There is a great danger involved with speed events, and the athletes understand when they are going 70, 80, 90 mph, that there are great risks. It is thrilling to see a downhiller racing down a mountain...and I hope that Bode Miller and Lindsay Vonn both do very well. It is also exciting to watch the luge, bobsled and skeleton...but I hope and pray that there will be no more accidents...and that everyone will be safe.


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