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February 21, 2016

Ladies and Gentlemen, Start Your Engines!: NASCAR 2016 - Niedermeyer's Dead Horse

Welcome to another year of NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series racing.

It couldn't possibly be a more beautiful day for racing in Florida. The forecast for the 58th running of the Daytona 500 is for a high of 74 degrees with only a few clouds in the sky. Then again, it's Florida. The forecast could change on a moment's notice and advise us to be on the lookout for torrential downpours and swarms of locusts.

I haven't been to a race at Daytona Speedway in 40 years, so it's changed a lot in that time. Driving past it as you head from I-95 to Daytona Beach, you can't miss it. It's a massive structure. A few Track Facts from their website:

- The Speedway covers 480 acres with 180 of those being infield. In the infield is a 29-acre lake, Lake Lloyd.

- The track is a 2.5 mile Tri-Oval. Pit road is 1,600' feet long.

- Until recently, seating capacity was 147k, which did not count infield capacity. Following renovations, capacity is still a whopping 101.5k, (More on that later)

It's a big ass facility.

Despite the growth in the popularity of NASCAR, the Speedway itself was seriously lacking as a facility. Top row seats required walking 7-stories of stairs. Many of the seats were folding metal chairs. Bathrooms were too few, and were outdated. The issues went on, and on, and on. Then... Daytona Rising

This year's 500 fans will enjoy the results of the $400M Daytona Rising renovation which includes new, wider seats, each with a back and armrests. Elevators and escalators ensure those seated in the tops rows will walk only a few feet to get there. And, once they arrive, the view will be improved due to the elimination of the Superstretch bleachers which previously obscured the miles-long view of Daytona Beach itself.


Last year:

This year:

In addition to the improved seating, the more numerous and quality bathrooms, dining pavilions, corporate boxes, and clubhouses mean it's really now like a massive NFL stadium.

It's an amazing transformation as can be seen in this time lapse video of the more than two-year long renovation.

I would absolutely love to meet the Morons for a race at Daytona. If any of you might enjoy that kind of thing, let's set it up.

The 2016 paint schemes.

I like this one:

and this one

Chase Elliott and Matt Kenseth will be in the 1 and 2 positions. The full lineup can be found here.

I also see that there's a fantasy league, which might be fun.

Okay, that's it for this week. I can't promise much, but 'll try to put up something each week.

Race time: 1:00 pm on Fox.

Enjoy the race, folks

UPDATE: I have been remiss in my duties.

How about a pic or two of Samantha Busch to make it up to you.

digg this
posted by Open Blogger at 12:35 PM

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