Viva Las Vegas Weekend!

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(Captain Blowdri and Clint Bowyer’s race car @ Las Vegas Motor Speedway)

Last weekend was my annual trek to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the NASCAR race weekend.  In addition to the Nationwide Series and Sprint Cup Series races at this facility, there were two nights of lightening fast World of Outlaws Sprint Car races on the 1/2 mile clay track, located behind turn four and to the west of the NHRA drag strip on this world class racing complex, consisting of 1200 acres.

I have only missed one race at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway since NASCAR started racing there in 1998.    This year the weather cooperated and was quite nice, in the mid 70’s during the daytime.  In the past, the weather was always of come concern.  The heat has been as high as in the mid 80’s one year, however in 2006, it snowed on us Friday night in our RV’s!  The weather in Las Vegas in the last of February/first of March is a crap shoot!

This year I purchased two weekend passes to the Neon Garage.  What a great idea!  The Neon Garage passes let you out into the infield.  That pass gives you access to pit road, the limited garage area, as well to an entertainment area that is really cool!

One of the many cool things about going to the NASCAR races in Vegas is the fact that the race track lies just across the street and a little NW of Nellis AFB.  During this time of the year, there is a wide a varied conglomeration of both US Air Force and NATO allies aircraft transiting to and through Nellis AFB.  But the treat of the whole weekend is watching the USAF precision flight team, known more commonly as the USAF Thunderbirds, practice and prepare for their upcoming yearly tour.

It is quite a show for all the race fans to watch on a daily basis!

For both the Nationwide race on Saturday, and the Sprint Cup race on Sunday, the dominate race car did not win the race!  Saturday “Blazingly Bad” Brad Keselowski had a sure win until he experienced a right front tire blowing out in the middle of turns 1 and 2 on the very last lap.  Luckily for him, he was able to hustle the car around to squeek in a third place finish.  On Sunday Tony Stewart was the dominating race car for most all of the race, however, some misguided pit strategy extremely late in the race relegated him to a second place finish!

There is just something magical about this place!

Check out this video! Viva Las Vegas!

httpvhd://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLUl8xkKSTk


Viva Las Vegas!

2009 Daytona 500 183 

THE  STORY LINES:

1.  TLVW (OL KYLIE BUSCH) WINS AT LAS VEGAS:

2.  ENGINE PROBLEMS UNRELATED AT LVMS:(espn.com)

3.  NATIONWIDE LAUNCHES NEW WEBSITE

      (nationwide series insider)

4.  TODD BODINE RACES AT ATLANTA FOR GERMAINE:(scenedaily)

5.  GEOFF BODINE DRIVES  THE #64 TOYOTA AT ATLANTA:

The NASCAR boys returned to Las Vegas last weekend and the ghost of ELVIS PRESLEY resonnated hauntingly throughout the weekend!  There were loud engines and show girls abounding!!  What a strange combination, but leave it up to Las Vegas to make it work!!

Ol Kylie Busch ( aka The Las Vegas Weasel, hereafter referred to as TLVW), finally pulled off a victory in front of the hometown folks in SIN CITY!!!  It was not his typical ” take no prisoners approach”!  TLVW  started out the weekend by posting fast time and winning the Coors Pole Award.  But becaused his team had to replace the engine, TLVW had to start at the back of the 43 car field.   The #18 M&M’s Toyota methodically worked his way thru the field so as to place himself in a position to race for the win.  TLVW really didn’t show his face till the last fifty laps.  But, sure enough there he was as the Checkers fell, out in front and bringing home the win!!!

There were a number of engine failures at  Las Vegas Sunday.  Most notably was the the winner of the first two races of the season, Rousch -Fenway Racing’s #17 Ford of Matt Kenseth.  His engine starting going sour at the drop fo the green flag, and finally went up in smoke on lap #7!  Following that engine death, there were a few more, most notably Roush-Fenway Racing’s #6 Ford of David Ragan, Hendrick Motorsports #5 Chevy of Mark Martin, and a few more along the way!  Since the re-configuration of the track, it appears that there is a greater toll on the engines.  The higher banking allows the drivers to run at greater speeds and keep the motors wound up in the 8500-9400 RPM band longer.  That really never allows the engine to “breathe easy” for any length of time!!

 

COMMENTARY

This reporter is still recovering from 5 days at LVMS!!  The  LVMS always puts on some great dirt racing during the NASCAR weekend!!  In addition to the Saturday Nationwide Series race and the Sunday  NASCAR Cup race, Weds. night at the dirt track the USAC midgets and wingless sprint cars put on one whale of a show.  There were race cars from all over the U.S. for this event!!  If that wasn’t enough, on Thurs. night The World of Outlaws put on a great show of 410 c.u. dirt slinging, high flying , all out haulin’ the mail sprint car racing!!!! 

But back to NASCAR, the racing at the LVMS is always very exciting, this race was no exception! There were a number of yellow flags early in the race, but as usual there seems to be a long green flag run in the middle of the race.  And, towards the end of the race, there appeared another round of yellow flags as the drivers feel the urgency of  ” GOTTA GO“!!  Las Vegas is one of my favorite tracks, along with Daytona, Talladega, and Atlanta.  These tracks seem to put on very close, exciting, and action packed races!  The fans walk away from these venues feeling that they got every dime’s worth of their money!!!  

Speaking of Atlanta, that is next up on the schedule!  It should be another great action packed weekend of high stakes racing!!

YES, I LOOKED IT UP SO THAT YOU WOULDN’T HAVE TO!!