It means that instead of what is normally expected of Talladega, we are going to feature and discuss the latest fall fashions. We will have plenty of corduroy pants, flannel shirts, fleece pull-overs, down-jackets, wool socks, plaid coats, blaze orange vests, camouflage hats, Aran Isles sweaters, and sweatshirts emblazoned with various College Football team logos.
Everything will be built for warmth and comfort as fall’s chill has come rushing in like the very wind. There will be nothing at all form-fitting or revealing. But I can assure you though it WILL be as colourful as the swirl of falling leaves at their peak.
Clothing, after all, is meant to be worn.
So if you came here expecting the usual parade of boobs and young girls….safe for driving, but NOT SAFE FOR WORK, well….you’ve come to the wrong place.
This is the place for tweed sport coats, button-down shirts, turtlenecks, flannel-lined khaki slacks, and sturdy walking shoes. This is a place for sportsmen and sportswomen to array themselves in a timeless and civilized fashion.
A virtual couturier if you will.
It is not a place for THIS:
Nope. Expect none of THAT on the day here, gentlemen.
Instead, we shall explore some tips on:
- How you can effortlessly sport the perfect layered-look
- The proper occasions to wear a chesterfield coat and how select the one that’s right for you
- How to accessorize the latest fluorescent snowmobile suits
- 6 things you need to consider before buying a monogrammed gun-case
All that, and….
Cue the Invocation, the National Anthem, and the Flyover.
It’s Talladega, Baby!! And you know what that means!!
One milestone of note was missed during last Saturday’s Bank of America 400 at Charlotte. Not missed so much as gone virtually unnoticed. As Junior zipped past the start/finish line on lap 34 to take the lead, the crowd rose and cheered as they do whenever Junior takes the lead or leads a lap, never realizing that Junior had just reached a NASCAR milestone—he’d logged the 1,000,000th mile of Electronic Fuel Injection racing this season.
I’d wager a guess most of y’all had forgotten that EFI was introduced to Sprint Cup for the very first time this season. Despite some teething problems initially…fuel pickups, throttle linkages, pump configurations, and so on….it’s worked flawlessly, without fail or controversy.
No car has had to retire due EFI problems, and no crew chief was hauled before Mike Helton, Ryan Pemberton & Co. on charges of Actions Detrimental to Stock Car Auto Racing ((they made the system Chad Knaus-proof evidently)). While a work in progress, the data derived from the EFI during the race has been invaluable. Every pit box and war wagon sports an array of laptops these days. My only hope is that NASCAR doesn’t get too technological. There is something to be said for the more visceral, hands on, simpler days.
But enough about the relative affability of EFI vs Carburetors, it’s Talladega after all.
Here’s former Newcastle United star Faustino Asprilla to remind us what Talladega is all about:
Absolutely spot on. (Newcastle drew 2-2 at home to Liverpool today, btw) On with the show!!!
Qualifying for tomorrow’s Camping World RV Sales 500 was rained out. There just wasn’t enough time to get the track dry and get qualifying in before the Camping World Truck series race.
Under the new rules this season, when qualifying is rained out, the field is set by the 1st Practice times. This puts Aric Almirola on the pole alongside Jeff Burton. Almirola clocked in with a 202mph 1st practice speed, on the dot. Burton laid down a 201.987 mph lap during the 1st practice.
The top 2 Chase contenders, Jimmie and Matt, both start alongside each other in the 6th row….Jimmie rolls off 11th and Matt 12th.
Speaking of Aric Almirola, his crew chief Todd Parrott has just been banned indefinitely by NASCAR for substance abuse. No word on what the wonder drug was, but it seems surprising to me that it was Todd Parrott falling off the wagon….unless I’ve missed a few meetings along the way, which wouldn’t surprise. RPM’s VP of operation and competition, Sammy Johns, will be on Almirola’s war wagon for the rest of the season.
But honestly, it is surprising. Parrott has been a solid championship crew chief for many years. He was Dale Jarrett’s crew chief when Jarrett won the 1999 championship. And trained many younger crew chiefs over the years including his brother Brad, and Justin Allgaier’s crew chief, Jimmy Elledge.
Hopefully, Parrott ‘ll take the Almendinger route. Go through the treatment and rehab and see if he can get reinstated. One thing is sure though, he’ll probably never work for Richard Petty Motorsports ever again. Petty is righteous about drinking and substance abuse. No drinking. Rule G strictly enforced. They don’t accept any beer or alcohol related ads, and they don’t participate in the Budweiser shootout or the Coors Light Pole award.
As for me….it’s still a fairly stunning development. So stay tuned.
Today’s Camping World Truck Series race started brightly. Jeb Burton, Ward’s son, was on the pole. Jeb must take after his uncle Jeff instead of his old man, or maybe Jeb was just raised on the north side of the house like his uncle was, since his pre-race press conference did not require English subtitles to convey it’s message. Jeb seems like a good kid, and I think he’ll do well going forward. But his bright start found mayhem on the final lap as he precipitated and was swept up in a huge Talladega trainwreck that took out (it seemed) most of the field. Jeb finished in 15th on the day, and Wisconsin’s very own Johnny Sauter, who was leading at the time of the wreck, cruised off to an easy finish.
It was not easy on most everyone else. Miguel Paludo, who Jeb Burton had tapped to set things off, went spinning and sailing down the track, on his hood, backwards, sparks swirling everywhere like little devils spawned by the Lord of the Night. Kyle Busch, who was in fifth at the time, was suck into vortex of the wreck, and after the dust had settled, his was sitting on track, leaning against the wall like he was Dufnering. Justin Lofton, who was caught up in the wreck, was taken to the hospital for further evaluation….injury not disclosed as I write this.
So Talladega can mean what I’ve jovially have been alleging it to mean for years, but Talladega can also mean destruction, both literally and figuratively. Which makes tomorrow’s Sprint Cup Race a dodgy proposition for those in the Chase, especially the two drivers who are out front, Matt and Jimmie.
It will be squeaky bum time for both of those lads.
One oddity to consider is that no Chase driver who has won the Fall Talladega race has gone on to win the Championship. And while I don’t want Jimmie to win tomorrow (unless Matt finishes second and leads the most laps) to jinx his chances, I honestly don’t want Matt to win it, either….as strange as that might sound. I don’t want to see Matt tempt fate to try and become the exception to the rule.
Chase or not, and going back to 1969 when the inaugural race at Talladega on September 14,1969 ((a race that most of top drivers boycotted)) which was won by Richard Brickhouse, winning the Fall or 2nd ‘Dega race AND the Championship in the same year, was a rare feat. Only three drivers in the history of NASCAR have done that.
And if I actually have to tell you which 3 drivers those were, then you definitely do not wear the firesuit in your family ((to steal a convenient and jocular turn of phrase from Joey Logano)) and you should be put on probation for a year for Actions Detrimental To Stock Car Auto Racing.
The feat was accomplished only 5 times. One driver did it 3 times, the other 2 once apiece. All in the Pre-Chase era (obviously) and all when the 2nd Talladega race was run in either July or August.
The 2nd Talladega race was moved to October in 1997…a race won by good ol’ Terry Labonte on October 12th in the Kellogg’s Chevrolet, for those of you keeping score. Noted Wine Connesieur Jeff Gordon won neither ‘Dega race that year, but he won the Championship.
So I’d rather not chance it.
Let’s say Danica Patrick will pick up her first win here and call it a day. She rolls off 20th, and I like her chances. As long as Matt finishes ahead of Jimmie, and no further than 20 back of Harvick and The Biff, it will all be good.
Those of you who got the three drivers who won the 2nd ‘Dega race and the Championship correct, join me for a nice cold beer of my choice.
As they say, a little DAB ‘ll do ya. And I say it too.
It’s Talladega, Baby!! And you know what that means! Safe for Driving, but NOT Safe For Work.
Cue the pre-race music…Mobile, Alabama’s very own, but live from Macon, Georgia: