Tuesday, January 29, 2008

24 Hours of Superbowl

Sometime like 7-8 years ago I developed a way to not make myself absolutely hate football, and although its half-way late this season you still have time...

The moment the NFC and AFC Championship games are over, turn off EVERYTHING that deals with the NFL. You've already got way more information coming in than is necessary, the last thing you need is two weeks of absolutely no news happening but 52 news outlets and reporters "dedicating" themselves to this no news. For 2 weeks you'll hear about absolutely everything that anyone can fathom and yet, they will all be wrong about what actually happens anyway (most superbowls, most notable Patriots over Rams) ... OR worse, they predict exactly what happens (last year).

Instead take those 13 days off, it can only serve to make you not only hate the reporters, but the sport itself.

What you may have missed was the great 24 Hours of Daytona on Saturday/Sunday.
For the first time ever, a team (Ganassi Racing) has managed to win the race for 3 years in a row, which is an astounding feat if you think of a couple of factors; the race averages 60 entries (yes only 25 DPs) but with 24 hours numerous things can happen; drivers can move around, conditions can be all over.

This year I think it went, rain, dry, rain, dry, cloudy windy, rainy, downpour, dry, windy, dry.

Its bad enough that you have to simply try and coordinate schedules and pit strategy for 24 hours, but add in all the conditions constantly changing and the larger than normal cautions (record this year) and its a heck-of-a feat. Many records went down this year, most lead changes, most cautions, most different leaders. I was most impressed by 2 teams in particular, Vision and Penske. Penske most understand, first time in forever and they pull off 3rd place after serious car contusions... Vision however made 23 of the hours but more importantly ran competitively when the car actually ran, now if they put a little more time in it I'm sure they could contend.

5 teams were still on the lead lap with about 4-5 hours to go and then the endurance part of the race kicked in as stuff started breaking on all kinds of cars, so the finish itself may have been undramatic, but the first 18 hours were spectacular. I personally wish for more coverage because ending at 9pm (central) and having to go to radio updates till 5am is a killer...

In the meantime, no Indy Car merger has happened, but we're about to get in the thick of team/driver announcements and testing while NASCAR has already started testing... we're not far away from the various season's and count the 24 Hours of Daytona as a true start to the year, it had everything from wacky problems and fixes to crazy strategy (teams starting a lap down for slick tires) and wacky behavior and interviews from loopy drivers...

Quote of the weekend from my wife: "We could drive to Daytona and catch the last quarter of the race..."

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