At long last, with the running of the Bud Shootout, the “off season” has come to an end! The format change for the 2009 Bud Shootout had this reporter somewhat leary of the quality of the racing that we would see. But let it be known that there was no let down in the “wild and crazy” compettition that the Bud Shootout has come to represent at Daytona!!
The Bud Shootout and the COT created a very aggressive and tightly bunched pack of cars vying for the lead all race long! It put the fans on the edge of their seats for the entire race!! I believe that same quality will exist for the 2009 Daytona 500 on Sunday. These race cars have become “a handful” to drive and that makes for some interesting racing!!
In looking forward to this Sunday’s “GREAT AMERICAN RACE” at Daytona, the plot lines thicken. With economy continuing to worsen, sponsorship money has gotten harder and harder to find. That has created a couple of problems/opportunites. Some of the race teams were forced to merge to “save their lives”. But that also created some opportunities for a few “privateers”. A few of those came in the names of Tommy Baldwin Racing, the former crew chief on the BDR # 22 Toyota, Jeremy Mayfield and Mayfield Motorsports, “Front Row Joe” Nemechek and NEMCO, Boris Said (who said?) and Brian Nemo, as well as a few more hardcore racers.
In all, some 56 cars timed at Daytona on Sunday. That is a very high car count for “troubled times”! Now the next test for alll of those race cars is Thursday and the Duel 150″s. There are about 22 cars racing for the final 8 spots of THE GREAT AMERICAN RACE. That will prove a daunting task for those teams. The old addage that Jim McKay ( may he rest in peace) from ABC’s Wide World of Sports coined years ago will ressonate loud and clear Thurday evening after both Duels are run. The 22 race teams will experience “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat” Those who have raced their way into the Daytona 500 will feel like they have just scored a huge victory, after all the last place finisher will receive slightly more that $250,000.00!!!
As this reporter gets ready to pack his suitcase this morning in prepartion for the journey to Daytona, there is excitement and anticipation in the pit of his stomach. If the Bud Shootout is any indication as to the type and quality of racing that this year’s “GREAT AMERICAN RACE” will produce, he is fully prepared to “tighten those belts down one more time”!!!
“BOOGITY,BOOGITY,BOOGITY, LET’S GO RACIN’ BOYS” (ol DW)
I have included a poll. I would be greatly interested in finding out your thoughts!!