The NASCAR circuit made it’s first stop in the Irish Hills of Michigan, where for the past few years Ford cars have been dominating, but the last five races Hendrick Motorsports has been on fire. It was also a very busy weekend for me. I was doing double duty, covering NASCAR 65 miles away from my house and the Toledo Mud Hens. Covering 8+ hours of nascar then covering 4+ hours of baseball is extremely exhausting, but it made for a great work weekend which I am very thankful for.
I am slowly working towards getting the opportunity to visit ever NASCAR track and Kansas Speedway has been on the list for a long time. Everyone had negative things to say about the track but I was very impressed. There was no traffic entering or exiting the track, the garages were nicely lit and Kansas makes for some awesome sunsets!
Bristol Motor Speedway is known as the fastest half mile on the NASCAR Circuit. It’s one of my favorite tracks, it’s small, loud and holds 160,000 people. Unlike most NASCAR tracks the teams work in a garage area, but at Bristol their cars are line up along pit lane working out in the open. After a few rain delays they finally raced at night, which it my favorite place to night race. Enjoy the photos.
The Daytona 500 is the Super Bowl of NASCAR; after a week in half of practices and qualifying it was finally time for the Great American Race. We left the hotel at 8am to make sure we didn’t get stuck in traffic, but that didn’t happen. A mile and half away from the track we were stuck in bumper to bumper traffic due to the no police directing traffic.
Finally we got to the track and it was time shoot pre-race features.
The truck race was delayed two hours due to heavy rain in the Daytona Beach area, but after the rain cleared they dropped the green flag at 8:30pm and the race was on! The race was crash free until the last 50 laps, which ended up being the only crash of the evening. Kyle Busch brought home the checkered flag for his first Truck Series win at Daytona.
The finishing order of the two 150-mile races Gatorade Duels, held on the Thursday before the Daytona 500, determine the starting lineup for the Daytona 500 held on Sunday. The first race didn’t have any crashes but the second duel made for a thrilling finish as Jimmie Johnson crashed into the wall causing Clint Bowyer to go airborne going into the tri-oval. Everyone was walked away from the crash safely.
During the first Sprint Cup practice of the evening, there was a crash involving 5 cars and one of the cars got up in the catch fence and tore a massive hole in the front part of the fence. I made the 2 mile walk from the infield to the outside grandstands to make a few pictures of the track crew working on the damaged fence.
Today was the busiest day so far at the track. I arrived at 8:30am and I left at 11:30pm. It was chucked full of practices and racing. I started with the Daytona 500 practice that lasted for a few hours then I shot the Arca race later in the day then the Sprint Unlimited at night. Easy event made for some awesome photos, so enjoy!