Today is all about Daytona. The Superbowl of automotive racing. This is the 50th running of the Daytona 500, so it’s an even more special event. I’ll be watching and posting updates.
06:58 PM – RYAN NEWMAN WINS THE DAYTONA 500!
02:08 PM – Pre-race: 81F, warmest day for Daytona, FL for the big race.
02:11 PM – Pre-race: Sprint has a very creative ad with those moving light trails and stock cars. +1 for Sprint.
02:17 PM – Pre-race: Chatting with Jeff Gordon and Darrell Waltrip. Gordon unsure of his winnings, estimates over $80 Mil.
02:20 PM – Pre-race: Verizon FiOS has a rockin’ commercial. I hate you, Verizon. Thanks for teasing me. (Not available where I live.)
02:28 PM – Pre-race: Tony Stewart agrees to cut all his hair if he wins.
02:41 PM – Pre-race: FOX promotes their ‘Ask the Pros‘ feature on the Web. (Turns out, it’s a partnership with MSN.)
02:45 PM – Pre-race: Dan Heese (Sprint CEO) informs that Sprint customers can watch clips of the NASCAR coverage on their mobile phones. (Promotion)
02:51 PM – Pre-race: Still here, just more interviews with team owners and other influential folks. Darrel Waltrip tears up a bit for his words about Dale Earnhardt Sr. (#3).
02:56 PM – Pre-race: Fan questions answered by Dale Earnhardt Jr., most notably — his sponsors changed dramatically, from Dodge/Bud to National Guard/AMP.
03:00 PM – Pre-race: Sprint/Nextel mini-concert dedicated to the past 50 years of NASCAR. Kool & The Gang, Chubby Checker and more.
03:05 PM – Pre-race: Kool & The Gang makes an appearance. Sounded good, and good crowd pleaser. (mini-concert)
03:08 PM – Pre-race: Brooks & Dunn makes an appearance. Stronger response from the crowd. (mini-concert)
03:15 PM – Pre-race: Concert complete, finished with a dedication to Dale Earnhardt’s (#3) accomplishments.
03:29 PM- “Gentleman, Start Your Engines!”
03:34 PM – Pace Laps led by a 2008 Chevrolet Corvette Z06.
03:38 PM – Check out the full starting position list at NASCAR.com @ http://www.nascar.com/races/cup/2008/1/data/lineup.html
03:39 PM – FOX’s “Gopher Cam” is the best. I can’t wait to see it when they are moving at 190MPH!
03:41 PM – Green Flag Drops! “Let’s go Racing!”
03:44 PM – Average speed: 191MPH!
03:49 PM – Dale Earnhardt Jr. maintains 8300 RPM continuously on turns and straightaways.
03:54 PM – Thirteen “lead” cars making a break from the rest. Nice and stable. Good position changes.
03:59 PM – Nice Flash Widget to see LIVE track position, from FOX: http://msn.foxsports.com/name/public/FS/NASCAR/racetraxFlashLeaderboard
04:05 PM – Hilarious commercial from Toyota. Kids take remote control of cars with drivers in it. Good job, Toyota.
04:10 PM – Sam Hornish Jr. enters pits for unusual vibration (likely, tires). After him, several other drivers follow him into the Pits.
04:16 PM – Kyle Busch and Jeff Gordon pull away from the pack, as first and second.
04:20 PM – Speculation from DE Jr’s Team that he may have one loose lugnut (out of 4). FOX reports that NASCAR mandates a high-tempered plate between the wheel and the rotor as a safety mechanism.
04:26 PM – Hamlin and Busch are running Toyota motors, currently in first and second. Will they sustain till the end? We shall see.
04:32 PM – Joe Nemecheck’s car fails. In the garage, no backup.
04:42 PM – Casey Mears (#5) takes a 14.1 sec. pit stop.
04:43 PM – Another group of drivers head down pit road, going three wide (!); Dale Earnhardt Jr. reports there is no vibration in his car.
04:48 PM – Caution Flag — no known accident, probably track debris.
04:50 PM – The whole track enters the pits, except for four people.
04:57 PM – Green Flag, Resumed.
04:57 PM – FOX’s “Crank It Up” facilitates heaven for TV viewers with surround sound. Thank you, Fox! (Hi-Def Sound of the Track)
05:00 PM – Dale Earnhardt Jr., reports that his shifter is malfunctioning; plans from team in pits to toss him a new one with duct tape to fix it. (lol)
05:03 PM – Lead pack now going four wide into the turns, at 184MPH!
05:06 PM – Another intuitive commercial: Craftsman. I want a Craftsman robot…
05:09 PM – Ooh, Gordon almost slips and crashes due to draft bumping. Lost some speed as a result.
05:14 PM – Kevin Harvick touches the grass, going four wide to maintain position. Wow!
05:19 PM – An ass-kicking commercial from Gillette, featuring top drivers and John Cena sharing moves on wrestling. Nice one, Gillette.
05:25 PM – Busch, Newman, Bifle, DE Jr., currently leading. 119 laps completed.
05:34 PM – @ 128 laps, 27 lead changes; Toyota lead well more than a majority of the laps.
05:37 PM – Curt Bowyer takes the second position, 0.1 second behind Kyle Busch.
05:41 PM – 138 Laps completed out of 200. Things should become a little interesting soon.
05:42 PM – FOX demonstrates the safety side panel which includes strong Styrofoam from Dow and a carbon fiber panel.
05:48 PM – According to Yahoo, it’s 77F right now in Daytona. http://weather.yahoo.com/forecast/USFL0106.html
05:54 PM – A lot of drivers enter Pit Road for last minute adjustments, tire changes, etc. 152 laps completed.
05:55 PM – Amusing FedEx commercial. Good burnout with that Lexus.
05:59 PM – Jeff Gordon heading into the garage, major mechanical problem.
06:01 PM – Tony Stewart takes third due to caution flag pit positioning rules.
06:03 PM – Gordon: “It’s a suspension failure…” Unofficially declared ‘out.’
06:05 PM – Yellow Flag- #6 and #17 hit the fourth corner wall, debris everywhere, sparks and smoke. No injuries or other impacts.
06:09 PM – @ Lap 163/200.
06:12 PM – DE Jr., now takes first.
06:14 PM – FOX cures ED singlehandedly with another “Crank it Up” session. Thanks!
06:17 PM – Tony Stewart takes first. Very aggressive position changes… “I hear thunder…”
06:19 PM – DE Jr. takes the first … battling it out with Tony Stewart.
06:20 PM – 4 Wide!
06:23 PM – Yellow Flag – Jimmie Johnson rear end slid out, taking out Hornish with him to the inside.
06:25 PM – All but five drivers head down pit road for final adjustments, tires, fuel.
06:26 PM – Confirmation reported by FOX, no injuries from the last caution.
06:29 PM – Green Flag! “Go, Go, Go!” 20 laps remaining.
06:32 PM – Bowyer burns out, Caution flag issued. No injuries, no impact into a wall.
06:32 PM – Yellow Flag.
06:35 PM – Current lineup: Newman, Montoya, Burton, Biffle, Busch, Stewart.
06:38 PM – @ Lap 186/200.
06:39 PM – Green Flag!
06:40 PM – 12 laps remaining. It’s gonna get wild!
06:41 PM – Yellow Flag, while going four wide, #22 was bumped by Harvick, slip up to the wall impacting three other drivers.
06:44 PM – @ 190/200 Laps. Ten to go!
06:48 PM – Green Flag issued! Jeff Burton Leading.
06:49 PM – Yellow flag issued. #5 hits the wall, sparks, smoke, debris everywhere. No injuries.
06:52 PM – @ 195/200 laps. Discussions of “Overdrive” (aka, Overtime, green/checkered flag) in the air.
06:55 PM – Green Flag issued! Jeff Burton continues to lead.
06:56 PM – 2 laps to go!!!!
06:57 PM -FINAL LAP — Tony Stewart takes the lead.
06:58 PM – RYAN NEWMAN WINS THE DAYTONA 500!