As promised I have decided that I would start posting about racing more often on this blog. Now I know most of my visitors are here for beauty reviews and things of that nature; however, beauty is not my only passion. If you are a long time follower of this blog you may already know that I picked up my passion for racing of all types from my dad. Growing up he was always out in the shop behind our house tinkering on whatever race car we had at the moment and when it was time, we would all load up into our Ford Excursion with the race trailer behind us and make our way to the track for a long weekend. My dad was a hobby racer, and I have recently graduated with an Engineering degree so I can go work in racing full time.
Bristol is a special place for me. It was the first NASCAR race my dad ever took me to way back in 2005 and we went together almost every year after that until I went away to college. It was our special time together and I will always remember that when I return to that sleepy part of East Tennessee.
|Photo: Brad Keselowski wins Truck Series Race at Bristol|
Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images
I will fully admit that I forgot all about the Truck race's start time and wound up tuning in for the last 16 laps. What I saw; however, was nothing short of great racing. In the end, Brad Keselowski wound up holding off a late race charge by Darrell Wallace Jr. to score his first victory in the Truck Series. While Brad has won in both the Nationwide Series and the Cup Series including a championship in each of those series. With his win in the Truck Series; however, he became part of the first ever father-son duo to win races in the Truck Series. Not to mention he won driving for his own team. As for post race inspections, three trucks were found to not meet minimum height requirements. These three trucks were the driven by Brad Keselowski, the winner, Ron Hornaday Jr., and Cole Custer. Fines and penalties were handed down today and were the same for all three trucks, $5,000, 10 points deducted from the championship driver and owner points.
As for the rest of Thursday, two practice sessions were held for the Nationwide Series where Chase Elliott was fastest in the first session and Kyle Larson was fastest in the second. Also on Thursday Food City Family Race Night is held in Downtown Bristol. During this traditional festival, many drivers appear for autograph sessions for the fans, there is live entertainment and show cars. And for the first time, Bristol hosted a 5K race dubbed the "Night Race 5K" where the course took runners around the dragway, campgrounds, and of course the high banked oval. The final event of the night is the traditional hauler parade where the NASCAR Sprint Cup haulers drive into the Speedway while fans line the road and cheer for their favorite drivers.
Friday at the Speedway is also traditionally a crazy day that is filled with practice sessions, qualifying sessions, and finally the Nationwide Series race. The Cup Series had two practice sessions that began at 11 A.M. and resulted in Kyle Larson having the fastest time. The second session began at 1:30 P.M. and resulted in Ricky Stenhouse Jr. having the fast time. Next on the schedule was the Nationwide Series qualifying session which left Kyle Busch with the pole position. If you haven't seen the new rules for the qualifying sessions, you can see those here.
|Ryan Blaney wins at Bristol Motor Speedway|
Photo Credit: motorsport.com
|Denny Hamlin and Dale Earnhardt Jr. wreck at Bristol on lap 162|
Photo Credit: NASCAR.com
As for leaders of the race, there were 16 lead changes among 9 different drivers. Some of these leaders included Kasey Kahne who was seeking a win to ensure a spot in the Chase, the last ten races of the season, also Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski, and the eventual race winner Joey Logano.
|Joey Logano wins at Bristol Motor Speedway|
Photo Credit: AP Photo/The Bristol Herald-Courier, Andre Teague
So that's a wrap on Bristol for 2014. The series will return to Thunder Valley April 17-19, 2015. As for this weekend, the Truck Series will be going to Canada to run at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park while the Nationwide Series and the Sprint Cup Series will be going to Atlanta.