There is something magical about honoring the past in it’s present form. For one weekend a year, the beginnings meet the current, and lead to a bright future.
The only appropriate place that this can be done is at an old track, but this old girl is always up to the task, and this year was no exception. This “Lady in Black” ages with such grace, than seeing her past return for one weekend makes her feel young again. Many feel this track has always been “Too Tough to Tame” yet many have conquered her biggest challenges.
Whether it is by a 14-lap margin, or just 0.002 seconds, a victory at Darlington still means something.
Now, back at it’s traditional weekend, things mean that much more, as many of these drivers remember when the race happened always around Labor Day, and then saw it move to later in the fall, then to Mother’s Day weekend. But all agree that having this event, back at it’s traditional date, is what makes it that much more special. Many have yet to win at Darlington, but on Sunday, one man could erase that mark from his resume.
Ironically, it was a retro look from a driver that had never won at Darlington representing another driver who had not won at Darlington in his career. Driving the first look of the Miller Genuine Draft machine, before he began piloting “Lightning,” Brad Keselowski finally worked his way to make it into victory lane at a place that Rusty Wallace wasn’t able to in his career.
Cheers to victory on this night.
That victory did not give a win in the league this week, although one did earn a little bit of playoff points to try and make a run towards the finish. Here’s the updated standings following the Bojangles’ Southern 500:
Penny Whitecotton – 937 – Kevin Harvick finished 4th (7) 39
Sal Sigala Jr. – 906 – Kevin Harvick finished 4th (4) 23
Trisha Rodisch – 905 – Kevin Harvick finished 4th (5) 29
Ashley Hobbs – 875 – Kevin Harvick finished 4th (5) 26
Dustin Parks – 819 – Denny Hamlin finished 10th (1) 9
Billy Fellin – 818 – Kyle Larson finished 3rd (4) 31
Rob Tiongson – 808 – Martin Truex Jr. finished 11th (3) 17
Rob Blount – 783 – Kevin Harvick finished 4th (2) 16
Misan Akuya – 741 – Jamie McMurray finished 9th (4) 23
Next Race: It’s finally here. The regular season finale has arrived. This is the final opportunity to earn some playoff points, and a win, before the reset. If this was hockey, it’s the final five minutes in the third period. In baseball, its the bottom of the ninth, and the pitching change is the one to get the save for the victory. In football, the two minute drill has arrived, and the need is a touchdown.
Under normal circumstances, as has been the case in all previous years, a short track would host the finale. This year, it’s the opposite realm.
To finish out the regular season campaign, NASCAR is going to another enormous hub of racing history…the Brickyard.
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway moves from it’s late-July or early-August date to early September, and now the 2.5-mile rectangle will be the track to decide who wins the regular season championship, who will make it into the playoffs, who unfortunately will miss the 16-driver cutoff, and less we not forget, who will actually win the race.
League participants, it’s your last chance for some playoff points, as we will crown a regular season champion at the end of Sunday. Then, after adding in the final round of playoff points, with 15 going to the regular season leader, we will jumble everything up, reset the standings, and also reset the rules for the playoff run.
So, have your picks locked in this time by FRIDAY, September 7, at 5 p.m. ET for the Big Machine Vodka 400 at the Brickyard.