[Written just prior to the race, fingers flying over the keyboard. Sat, Feb 13 2010]
Daytona Beach FLA : While 49 of the 50 states have snow on the ground, the Camping Season begins for all of us who follow professional auto racing. Minutes from now, the Camping World 300 Nationwide Series race sends us the sure roar of spring.
The infield defined by Daytona International Speedway's two and a half-mile track overflows with RVs from all around the country. The stands are packed with NASCAR fanatics. The smell of high-octane racing fuel and hot dogs fills the air. This race runs 300 miles in 120 laps, bringing us the incomparable thunder of 43 stock cars at full throttle. The sounds and smells of Spring!
Temps are lower than normal for this famed Florida venue, and the wind may even be a factor. With a cooler track, cars should handle better. We'll see plenty of daring side-by-side racing. Six former Camping World 300 winners join the pack, along with eight previous Nationwide Series champions. Rising star newcomer, GoDaddy's darling Danica Patrick hopes to give 'em a run for their money.
From the warm comfort of an upstate NY living room, we'll be watching AFLAC's Carl Edwards (my wife's employer is AFLAC). Edwards finished a video-replay second last year in this race. Also in the spotlight: Dale Earnhardt Jr. (of course!), Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, and a slew of Wallaces.
The pre-race interviews are done, the anthem sung, the flyover a sleek and stunning symbol of freedom and speed.We humbly thank Camping World for bringing us this splendid harbinger of better weather and camping adventures.
"Ladies and gentlemen: Start your ENGINES!" makes it official. Let's go Racing -- and Camping, too! May the best man -- or woman -- win.
Reprints available on request. _______________________________________________
Did you attend the race? Love to hear from you if you did!
I'm a husband, father, and small-business owner living in upstate NY, near Rochester. My specialty is residential remodeling: kitchens, baths, and countertops. Originally I provided design and blueprint services for my customers; hence the name "D'Zyne."
When I'm not busy working I love to go camping with my family in our 80's-era Shasta camper. I always take a good book, too, in case it rains.
What else makes me smile? The NFL, playing golf, great music (mostly Country these days), thunderstorms, bicycling with my kids, and puttering around in my garden. Oh yeah, and making new friends, like you!