DAYTONA BEACH FL - FEBRUARY 16: Kasey Kahne driver of the #4 Red Bull Toyota Greg Biffle driver of the #16 3M Ford Tony Stewart driver of the #14 Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevrolet and Clint Bowyer driver of the #33 Cheerios Chevrolet practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 16 2011 in Daytona Beach Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
I have a little confession to make, if you're willing to listen. I'm feeling a bit guilty about it because Tony was very generous to let me play a role here on Pop Off Valve, which is, after all, an IndyCar blog.
And I haven't exactly been burning up the interWeb lately with my deep thoughts and observations on open-wheel racing. Although news has been coming out a bit slower lately than it was toward the end of last year, there have still been some ideas kicking around my head, but none that made me rush to find a piece a paper to write them down.
So, after a night of soul searching, I've decided the best thing to do is just make a clean start, confess my issue to the Pop Off Valve audience, and get on with it.
I like to watch.
NASCAR, that is, I like to watch NASCAR. Say, isn't that a heck of a place to put a page break? Who thought of that?
Anyway, I spent all day yesterday watching NASCAR practice at Daytona International Speedway. First I had to wait for the rain to stop, so I quickly did some work while monitoring Twitter for track-drying updates.
But once dry, it was Cup, then Nationwide, then more Cup and more Nationwide and I finished the day watching the trucks - my favorite series - making laps in the dark.
Make no mistake about it - I felt pretty guilty about spending so much time watching the "tin tops," the "fenders and hoods," boys and girls of the rainbow sherbet logo'd racing series, the ... well, you get it. But it seems like it's been SO LONG since the Rolex 24, and I'm sorry, but watching repeats of the Goodwood Festival on SPEED just haven't been enough. (Ed: Although the very real benefit of watching that is no Larry Mac, DW or Digger ...).
I work at home, having built myself a nice little "man land" with a desk, TV and easy chair, so I often have some form of racing on in the background while I tap away at the laptop. Normally I keep the sound pretty low - or muted, depending on which talking head is commentating - but yesterday I had to tear myself away from the TV screen to do some actual work.
And it was just practice, for gosh sakes. I rarely watch practice or only pay scant attention to qualifying. But, it's been so looooonnnnnngg since we've seen live racing. So, I watched that, and I watched the Bud Shootout a couple days before that, too.
I've already told my wife I'll be too busy this weekend for honey-do projects, what with the trucks racing on Friday and Nationwide on Saturday leading up to The Great American Race on Sunday.
Hey, lots of people like to watch the tin tops race. I don't really have a problem with NASCAR, all right? I mean, when IndyCar gets started in a little more than a month (Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, Sunday, March 27) I'll be all over it, I promise. Because I can stop watching NASCAR anytime I want to.
But in the meantime, it's just a little harmless fun, watching those brightly colored cars with the fenders and big numbers on the side, right? Just a little fling, as it were. That's not a problem, right? (whispers: and maybe to play a little fantasy nascar too? okay?) Sure it is, and if you'll forgive me, I've got to go. The Duels are coming on.
Not that I can't stop if I want to, because I can. And I will.