Hey, Have You Heard the News?

Daytona is Coming-Daytona is ComingDaytona is Coming

Yes – Daytona is Coming!!!

(Editor’s note: In waiting for the Daytona 500 we got the Rolex 24 hours this weekend and Vivian Simons article below to help us overcome a next couple of weeks. TV coverage from Rolex 24 hours in US are on the different NBC channels, check your local station for details, here in Sweden, Viaplay got the coverage.)

Auther’s note: My articles are based solely on my thoughts and observations. Normally I do not offer statistics, although at times I may reference what different broadcasters, among others, have said or alluded to.

Each year about this time, there is an excitement in the air that makes it very hard for racing fans to contain their impatience, so they want time to pass just a little more quickly. After all, racing will be here soon, and Daytona is coming! We seem to sometimes forget that time doesn’t pass more quickly or more slowly. It just seems that way because of how we live and use our time, so our mind convinces us that it is passing faster or slower. Just like some race cars seem to be faster or slower, right? However, we must remember that there is still only 60 minutes in an hour and 24 hours in a day as our calendars and clocks prove over and over again.

The first 24 Hour event in 1966 

Why do we look forward to Daytona so much? One reason is because the track has been silent for quite a few months. The main reason though is because we are all race fans and are anxious to see and hear the cars, see our favorite drivers, and most of all, see all of that combined and put into action on the race track at Daytona. We will then start talking about the field of veterans and rookies and everything speed. While doing so, we will be creating new memories to pass down to future generations of fans.

But… it won’t be long after the race starts that a lot of us will be complaining about something or someone in that race. It will either be about the announcing, what we see as the obvious bias of the announcers, certain racers and their type of driving or their attitude, certain brands of cars having an advantage over the other makes, innovation mistaken for cheating because you are not a fan of a particular driver or brand of car, and the list goes on and on. Based on this, we may also decide to, or not to, use certain sponsor products.

Let’s talk about the announcing. Possibly, each of us looks at that with a certain attitude because we either like or dislike a certain announcer. If we like the personality of the broadcast team, then we will think the broadcast is okay. When some of us pick up on what we feel is bias or favoritism being shown to certain drivers, which in turn may affect how we feel or begin to feel about certain drivers, we tend to turn away because we think they are jamming certain drivers and teams down our throats. Then again, it probably molds the minds and thoughts for a lot of newer fans to NASCAR. In our world today, younger people are being taught to follow the crowd more than they are being taught to be individuals and to think for themselves. Another thing I have noticed is that there are many times I wonder if the broadcast team is even watching the same race I am. This is because I feel they are too busy advancing their own agenda, therefore missing a lot of chances to tell us about all the drivers and all that is happening on the track.

Now we will briefly touch on certain drivers. All of us have favorite drivers based on several things. Some like drivers because they have been conditioned to like them by their family, friends or by the announcers who tend to only talk about and praise certain ones. This is good advice some fans feel, because they like to go along with whatever they are told, rather than analyze and think for themselves. But then, some of us feel we will definitely take time to watch and analyze and then form our own conclusions based on what we see from each individual driver. Or it could be formed because of our loyalty to a certain brand of vehicle. At any rate, that particular conclusion is based on several things, including personality.

Let me give you a for instance of this: There has been a lot of talk about Kyle Busch lately because he feels the newer, rookie drivers are getting more promotion by NASCAR, even though they have not proven themselves on the track like a lot of the older veteran drivers have. Because I live in the Pacific Northwest now, I normally pay more attention when drivers from the Western states enter the racing world, especially NASCAR. When Kurt Busch began racing, I naturally watched him more closely than I would have watched a newcomer from back East. I thought he was okay and had good possibilities. When Kyle came onto the scene, I watched him as well. It did not take long for me to tell some of my friends that he was going to be a much better NASCAR driver than his older brother. As time passed, I began to admire the way he could wheel a race car, but I was definitely not a fan of his personality. Therefore, I personally feel his complaints about the rookies are not really important. IMO, he has turned a lot of fans away because of his attitude and personality.

Another complaint a lot of us have is that one car brand may have a definite advantage over the other car brands. There is not much to be said about this because it will never change for some of us, especially the older generation of fans since we are very brand loyal. This loyalty was based on several things. For the older generation of fans, our parents taught us that dependability was the most important thing in a vehicle, with style and looks being secondary. For younger fans, it seems to be based on looks, colors and the current whim of the time.

One of my New Year’s Resolutions is that I will try very hard to be more tolerant and understanding of all things NASCAR. I hope each fan will look upon the new racing season with the same attitude. The bottom line is that we all want a safe and competitive race season and would love to see the best team and driver win races. The championship is secondary to some of us because of convoluted rules. We want each driver to get their fair share of promotion, not only by NASCAR, but by the broadcast team as well.

Thank you for reading and commenting here. Your thoughts, ideas on the subject and opinions are very welcome. I remind you to keep them clean and no bashing, please.

Vivian Simons

(Editor’s note: This story is published with the permission from the author! It was originally published on Race Fans Forever. More of Vivian’s articles; (Here)

Photo Credit (cover); IMSA: Today’s Starting lineup for the Rolex 24 at Daytona – AutoRacing1.com


  1. Well said, Vivian. I really wish I could feel that way – I have a PTR piece in the works that started with more hope but ended with my typical rant of why I don’t. I miss the excitement, and I envy you that you’ve been able to hold onto it.

    I smiled at your Kyle Busch reference and recalled that September night in 2001 when, at age 16, he made his third-ever start in the truck series. If you look at the results, it seems nothing special: 22nd place, three laps behind. But before an on-track issue, he was running well enough that everybody knew he was a really special 16-year-old. Then, less than two months later, he was in effect banned for more than two years out of tobacco company concerns about an underage driver creating legal problems for them. In the years since, his controversial personna has helped keep NASCAR in more conversations than the bland batch that followed him to the top.

    I’m starting to plan my short-track schedule for this year, but I guess you’ve inspired me to leave a little room for Daytona, too.

  2. Frank, thank you for your response and thoughts. I sincerely hope you don’t desert NASCAR, but do stay true to your short tracks as long as you can travel and visit them. Wish I still could.

    I do remember the fiasco with the tobacco companies and Kyle Busch. I have always admired his racing, just not his personality.

    I look forward to Tony in the booth at Daytona. He is still my fav…

  3. Having favs and not so favs is what really made the racing experience great. At our local Richmond weekly track, fans of certain drivers sat together. I recall back in the day when I would not buy a ticket in the Ford grandstand section at Charlotte – only the GM or Chrysler. Wonder if they’ve added a Toyota section? You’re right about this being a special time of year, Vivian. We all looked forward to the beginning of racing again – regardless the series. Let’s hope there’s some great racing this year.

  4. Dave, you wouldn’t sit with the Ford fans? I probably would not have either, lol…We had winged super modifieds and sprints at our local track and we would sit just right of the flagman about 4 rows up. One of the sprint drivers said he could spot red best in the grandstands so I always wore red! Then, lo and behold, women were allowed in the pits so that took care of that situation!

    Thank you for reading and for your comment.

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