Hey Cletus, “Dere’s a racin’ track in Chicago?” ~ Week Twenty One NASCAR Update + NHRA

Yeah, but the hillbillies aren’t allowed in the city… While the Sprint Cup teams were idle this week, the Nationwide Series rolled into Chicagoland Speedway, which is about 45 miles southwest of Chicago in Joliet.

To be honest, most of the race was quite boring and I was more interested in the live NHRA action I discovered. That’s right…Until Sundat, I always thought ESPN3 was a cable channel I didn’t have. Now, I have a pretty nice channel lineup from DirecTV, so I looked online to see what’s up with this ESPN3 the drag racers talk about on twitter. I’m such an idiot… ESPN3 IS A WEBSITE that features live streaming video. Live NHRA can be pretty boring itself when the track workers have to tend to the track between rounds or after crashes…

I know.. not the best video quality, but it’s what I could find. Terrible accident, but Paul Pittman was fine. Notice, at the top of the track, how the safety crews are moving about a second after the car becomes sideways.. The NHRA has fantastic trackworkers… dubbed the Safety Safari.

I guess since I’m on the NHRA, I might as well stick with it and swing back around to NASCAR. All four John Force Mustangs made it through the first round of elimination. It becomes a bit tricky for round two, as Courtney has to race her teammate, brother-in-law and current points leader Robert Hight (I think there’s a lot of inbreeding at John Force Racing…!).

Round two: Mike Neff loses his race, John Force wins his and Courtney takes out Robert. Two Force cars left for round three…

Round three: Here’s where I made a bold prediction: If John and Courtney both win their races and face each other in the finals, Courtney will win her first trophy. How do I know this? Because it’s his daughter! He’ll blow it right at the line so she can win. He’s done it in the past… Didn’t work out that way, however… John lost his race to Jack Beckman via an extremely rare red light. A red light situation is basically when the driver starts to soon. In this race, he left .005 of a second too soon. Not noticeable to the naked eye… but the timing equipment doesn’t lie. Courtney kicked Ron Capps’ ass in her race. She got off the line quicker and ran away from there… textbook win! So Courtney is off to her second final!

Funny Car final: Courtney got off the line quicker over Beckman (In the past, Courtney has struggled with her reaction time off the line. She is clearly improving and will win a race soon) but her car appeared to be a real handful as she was all over the track. All that driving she had to do allowed Beckman to catch and pass her at the stripe. He beat her by .0091 seconds; 4 feet! Again, Courtney is heading in the right direction..

BACK TO NASCAR.. As usual, Danica ran a very pedestrian race. She started thirteenth, hung around all day and finished fourteenth; last car on the lead lap. That’s actually a win for Danica….because she didn’t crash twelve times!

Austin Dillon had a typical Austin Dillon race. Started second, stayed with the leaders all day and finished sixth. Bold prediction: If he continues to do well, which he will, look for him to move up to the Sprint Cup Series driving the old number “3” of the late Dale Earnhardt. The black “3” of Dale Sr. hasn’t seen the track in NASCAR’s top series since he died in it on February 18th of 2001.

Elliott Sadler won the race. Apparently he was sick for several days before the race, and during, and battled through that to win. That’s impressive, as these cars are a bitch to drive when healthy. Regardless, Elliott talks real funny because he’s from Virginia. I enjoy trying to figure out what he’s saying…

Derp!

Numbers after week twenty one:

Austin…
Starts Wins Top 5 Top 10 Avg. Start Avg. Finish
18 1 10 14 8.8 7.1

Dale… (Not pictured… instead, one of my favorite pictures of Diane & myself)

Starts Wins Top 5 Top 10 Avg. Start Avg. Finish
19 1 8 14 14.3 8.3

Danica…

Starts Wins Top 5 Top 10 Avg. Start Avg. Finish
18 0 0 1 13.6 19.6

Hug your children and love them every day

Related Posts:

Week twenty
Week nineteen
Week eighteen
Week seventeen
Week sixteen
Week fifteen
Week fourteen
Week thirteen
Week twelve
Week eleven
Week ten 

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