First page of the Racing archive.

Daytona 500

Posted by Fast on November 26, 2013 with Comments Closed
in News, Racing
as ,

It was one of those seminal moments you recall with incandescent clarity, like when President Kennedy was shot, or when O.J. was cruising down the freeway with his pal Al Cowlings in that white Bronco, the cops in pursuit but keeping their distance. A moment so graphic or so profound — or both — that when people ask what you were doing when it transpired, you remember. As do they.

And yet on That Day, at That Daytona 500, why is it the first image I conjure is of the great Dale Earnhardt reaching his hand out the window and throwing an Intimidator-sized middle finger at a whippersnapper driver from Las Vegas named Kurt Busch?

And am I wrong to think that of all the ways one could choose to remember this man, that he might prefer that one the best?

It’s conceivable, maybe even likely, that on That Day, at That Daytona 500, there were a few more Intimidator-sized middle fingers thrown at other drivers when the TV cameras were following other cars. The incident with Busch happened early in the race; there were lots of laps to run before the last one, when Earnhardt’s car would slide up the track and impact the wall at a critical angle.

But Busch wants to be the one: The last driver the great Dale Earnhardt flipped off in the heat of battle.

When they started asking the other drivers about their remembrances of That Day, Sunday being the 10th anniversary of That Daytona 500, that’s the first thing the whippersnapper driver from Las Vegas recalled, too.

“My ‘Welcome to NASCAR Moment’ was probably the finger out the window from Dale at Daytona,” said Busch, who has one Cup Series championship to Earnhardt’s seven. “It was my first Daytona 500, and I got the finger out the window. I thought I was minding my own business in the middle lane, but when it’s Senior, you gotta move over and let him through.

“He was on his way to the front.”

Yes, he was. He was always on his way to the front. A million words or more have been written about Dale Earnhardt since That Daytona 500 in an attempt to explain why so many people revere him so, why so many remember what they were doing when It Happened.

But those eight words from Busch probably do it better than most.

He was on his way to the front.

“Just his name and the Earnhardt legacy and Daytona mixed into the same sentence is so powerful,” Busch said.

“For him to go 20 years before he won his first race here in 1998, it was amazing to watch. The outpouring of support from all the teams, of course the fans, the other drivers. When he passed away, we lost so much of our leadership in the garage area, how he communicated with NASCAR to develop rules or explain to them how the cars needed to be changed or adjusted.

“The one thing that came from his passing was the safety innovations in our sport, and that has continued with his legacy. We’ve kept so many drivers safe since that point.”

It has been 10 years. It is still almost beyond comprehension that It Happened to him.

“That was my first Daytona 500,” Busch said. “To have that type of news, to have those type of feelings of ‘What am I getting into?’ We just lost the most iconic individual of our time, other than Richard Petty, and here I am starting my first race. It’s amazing that 10 years have passed since it happened.”

I never interviewed Dale Earnhardt one-on-one, don’t have an anecdote to share or surely I would. R-J sports editor Joe Hawk sat with him in the back of a limousine, 11 days after Earnhardt won the Daytona 500 after all those years of trying. The Intimidator was a pussy cat, Joe said. When he learned I was writing this column, it took Hawk all of three seconds to find his and print it out.

A week doesn’t go by that I don’t pull alongside a pickup truck with a gun rack in back, or a black Monte Carlo, or even a Toyota, for cryin’ out loud, sporting one of those decals that says its driver remembers Dale Earnhardt, usually accompanied by a big No. 3, his car number, displayed at a slanted angle that suggests a goodly amount of speed — as if it, too, were headed for the front.

For what it’s worth and for whatever reason, I have yet to see a decal with President Kennedy’s name or the number PT-109 on somebody’s back window.

Supercross Racing

Posted by Fast on November 26, 2013 with Comments Closed
in Dirt Bikes, Motorcross, Racing, Supercross
as , , , , ,

Have you heard of supercross motorcycle racing before Supercross motorcycle racing is a sport that is popular in America. However, despite that popularity, there are still many individuals who have no idea what supercross is. If you are one of those individuals, you are urged to learn about this sport. It is so fun, exciting, and action packed that there is a good chance that you will be a supercross motorcycle fan, in no time at all.
If you enjoy watching professional racing, especially NASCAR, there is a good chance that you will also enjoy supercross motorcycle racing. This is because, like most other forms of racing, supercross is an action packed, competitive sport. If you are watching a supercross race, whether that race is live or televised, you will likely be on the edge of your seat.
Although supercross was earlier compared to NASCAR, you will find that the two actually have little in common, besides the fact that they are both popular and both are focused on racing. While NASCAR uses traditional race cars, also sometimes referred to as sports cars, supercross uses motorcycles. What is unique about these motorcycles is that they are not the ones that you regularly see on the highway; they are offroad bikes made especially for offroad racing.

In addition to using offroad motorcycles, supercross varies from a number of other forms of racing, especially when it comes to the racing surface. Like many other forms of racing, including asphalt racing or traditional dirt track racing, you will find that supercross racing events take place on manmade tracks.

These manmade tracks are often indoors. The tracks will vary, depending on the type of supercross race, but most tracks have numerous obstacles, which include jumps. The goal of supercross is to maneuver your motorcycle throughout the track to finish first.

As previously mentioned, the type of manmade track will all depend on the type of supercross race being run. Supercross is a professional racing sport, but it is not just limited to professional racing. Men, women, and children from all across the United States have started taking part in this fun and exciting sport. Those riders are often referred to as amateur supercross racers. Amateur supercross racers may race at a local track.

In fact, many local individuals and business owners have come together to sponsor local supercross drivers, as well as provide funding for the tracks. Although these events may not be considered professional, they are rapidly increasing in popularity. In fact, they are so popular that you may even have a local supercross or motocross track in or around your neighborhood.

In addition to local supercross tracks, there are many individuals who have made their own. Although most professional supercross racing tracks are indoor tracks, most amateurs have or use ones that are outdoors. A large number of wanttobe professional riders have made the decision to develop a track in their own backyard or in nearby fields.

However, the only downside to doing this is that racers are often on their own. In the event that an accident occurs, it may be more difficult to obtain help, when compared to racing at professional tracks and sanctioned events.

Now that you know what supercross motorcycle racing is, you may either want to become a fan or a racer. Whichever you wish to be, there is a good chance that you will be enjoying the sport of supercross motorcycle racing for years to come.

Supercross Motorcycle Racing for Kids

Posted by Fast on November 26, 2013 with Comments Closed
in Dirt Bikes, Motorcross, Racing, Supercross
as , , , , ,

Are you a parent? If so, whether you are the parent of a boy or a girl, you will find that your child may be interested in supercross motorcycle racing. Supercross motorcycle racing is a sport that is popular among individuals of all ages; however, the action packed excitement is what appeals to most teenagers […]