The marathon trek back from Dega was completed in a record 11 hours 46 minutes and would have shattered the old record had it not been for a 30 to 40 minutes grid lock on I-20 in south Dallas. So after a couple of hours of unloading and cleaning the Alabamer red dirt off the RV, there was little time or energy to blog some observations from the past weekend's race, so better late than never I guess.
* We say it every year, but even with more camping areas, one needs to get to Dega by Tuesday night in order to find a nice spot in the 'free area'.
* Beads, beads, and more beads.....and the other activity that goes with the exchange of them. I still never really understood the reasoning by all of these shenanigans, but many seem to have a lot of a fun collecting them.
* Saturday morning, I wake up to the sounds of SEC fans getting fired up for their respective team's football games, flipped on the DISH to catch 'Gameday', enjoyed some good 'early' games, hit the track, then back to the camp grounds to enjoy more college football. Fall Dega in it's full greatness. (now we just need Nascar to change the date once agian, as to not conflict with the Red River Shootout, the first Saturday has been taken by the RRS since the mid 1930s, i don't think they will be changing that date soon)
* The new track surface seems to be a hit. The cars and trucks had enough grip to change their lines high or low in the corners at a rate I don't think we have seen before. The 8 car was making "online racing" moves, and making it work.
* Truck race and Dega are a perfect fit. Gave me some positive anticipation of seeing the C.O.T. in the near future. I would not be surprised to see with some creative rear wing aero and higher car profile, that the plates might actually be removed (or at least limited from current standards) and still be able to keep the cars under 200 MPH.
* Speaking of the CTS race, yes I saw it live, but I also brought a 5 inch LCD TV to watch the Red River Shootout, although the Sooner's results were not something I had wished for.
* It is no secret that I have been very critical of the off the track stuff of 19 PR Dude/Spotter, Brett Griffin. But I have said it before, and will say it again, he maybe the best spotter (at the very least top 5) in the business. This is not just at a track like Dega, but everywhere. He has the unique ability to watch the car he is spotting for, while still being able to see a straight or so ahead/behind. He also has a knack for clarifying the seemingly endless lack of communication and clarity from on top of the pit box.
* Speaking of spotters, probably something that went unnoticed was that the pole sitter had a backstretch spotter. That's the first time I have seen RYR use one at Dega. Very well could have been at the direction of Nascar and having a yellow stripe on one's rear bumper.
* Junior scanner chat after being warned by Nascar about excessive bump drafting. "well, no one is complaining to me about it." Also, there has been talk of the 'Dale JR' caution when the 8 car was injeopardyy of losing the Lucky Dog spot and Nascar threw out a 'debris caution'. Everyone can put their foil hats away as everyone on the back stretch could see the debris (looked like a piece of wadded up sheet metal right in the middle of the track). No 'JR Conspiracy' here. But I did wonder why the Power-aid bottle was left un-noticed for the last 50 or so laps, I guess it was because it was some 50 or feet below the yellow line. But I justdidn'tt understand why it was not picked up under the handful of a caution laps when there was opportunity to do so.
* The 'Incident' and what I saw. Was the 8 making his patented 'fake' block move (he did it a few years ago which initiated Sadler to do his airborne thingy) when the 48 dropped low in an attempted to get under the 8. When the 8 'faked', the 48 reacted as well and moved down further just a bit, just about the same time the 25 was going to bump draft the 48. The 25 bumped the 48 not in the center of the car, but more towards the 'tail light', causing the 48 to get squirrelly, and then the 48 touched the 8, and you know the rest. Just as i didn't lay blame on the 48 a couple of years ago for some of his antics on plate tracks, I would do the same here for the 25. Just one of the racing dealios.
* I was not surprised one bit about the 'reaction' by many fans after the race. After all, they fondly call this track, 'Dale-adega'. I cannot defend their actions at all, but I will say that in a weekend and at a place where pretty much 'anything goes' is not only the norm, but even commented on by drivers and such with them saying their 'favorite place to watch the Nascarcrazinesss is the Dega infield', this behavior can be expected. To the credit of many fans on the backstretch, for every one person I saw throwing an object, I saw and heard three or so others calling them out and telling them to stop. And while I only saw 6 fans in handcuffs after the race, (I am sure there were more), the 'good fans' were quick to point out to security the ones committing this stupidity.
* And lastly, should there be some sort of 'Man Law' against throwing and wasting a perfectly good and full beer? Who makes the call the Miller?