Thursday, May 21, 2009

Raceweeks Part Deux

NASCAR gets back to points racing this weekend in the Coca Cola 600. the Sprint Cup series took the week off from the "regular" season to run for that big bag of dough in the All Star race last Saturday. Tony Stewart winning the cool million after a sweet pass with 2 laps to go.

There has been on recurring theme with the drivers over the past 2 weeks. They all love being at home for the All Star race and 600. It takes me back a couple of years, when there was talk about the series moving the All Star race to other tracks. I said it then, and I'll say it now: doing that would cause a mini-revolt from the drivers. The Sprint Cup season is long enough as it is. The drivers relish the chance to be home for 2 straight weeks, and race at the same time. Luckily, correct thinking took hold, and that sort of talk has been dissolved.

Qualifying for the 50th running of the Coca Cola 600 rolls off tonight, and we'll be live from the track for all the coverage. Pretty cool deal, being involved with the golden anniversary of this race. I can't see myself doing this in 50 years for the 100th running, so I will drink all of this in with you. You can find memories of 600 milers gone by, at our Carolina on Demand Channel, 1234 on your digital cable. It's free, and best of all, it's loaded with great racing memories and finishes from the track.

Gotta get a note in about the Carolina Hurricanes...Carolina could be in some trouble if Tuomo Ruutu and Erik Cole are out for an extended period of time. Both are officially gametime decisions, but it would be remarkable to see them in uniform tonight.

Have to call out Penguins forward Matt Cooke, though. Cooke is the guy that called for extended league punishments for knee-on-knee hits (as a result of Alexander Ovechkin's collision with Sergei Gonchar in round 2). Cooke then goes out, and intentionally submarine's Cole's leg in a knee-on-knee incident. Game 2 could be ugly as a result, and that's fine. It would be nice to see the Hurricanes come out physically, and carry the play to the Penguins. If Cole is out, they lose a bit of that jam. Should still be a fun game to watch.

See you at the track!

Mike Solarte

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