Thursday, January 1, 2009

Welcome to KP's World!

Welcome to my first attempt at a blog!

I just returned from the Polar Bear 150 at Rockingham Speedway, where about 65 cars took the green flag under sunny, cool conditions. Honestly, in the sun, it wasn't all that bad. Now, when I left and walked behind the grandstands, in the shade, it was a bit cold. Karate-chop cold, as Colleen would say.

What did I think of the race? Glad you asked. The racing itself was great, very enjoyable and very impressed with the drivers. The organization of the event left a little to be desired, with each caution taking much too long and the laps clicking off slower than I would have liked. Nothing really can be done with somebody crashes, so not sure what could be done to speed up everthing. Maybe let the pace car travel a bit faster, to at least put in some laps.

The size of the crowd surprised me a bit, so hopefully owner Andy Hillenburg thought it was worth his while to hold this race. No clue on the exact figure, obviously, but my brother and I estimated it was close to 5,000. And that was only what we could see on the frontstretch. It doesn't include the suites, which I heard were packed, or the infield. I would imagine the race will return next year.

Speaking of racing, I saw a disturbing report that Petty Enterprises officially will close its doors when a merger with Gillette Evernham Motorsports is complete. The ends about 60 years of fielding a NASCAR team. For race fans such as myself, it probably feels much as it did for fans of the Brooklyn Dodgers when the team left for Los Angeles. Hard to believe there isn't an opportunity in today's sport for the King. RIP, Petty Enterprises.

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