NASCAR has begun…..

The 2011 season of NASCAR has officially started with the running of the 53rd Daytona 500 today. I recorded it due to some church stuff going on, but I made it home with about 75 laps to go so I watched it in the garage while getting some stuff done. My son hung out with me and we did some guy stuff along with working on his bike as the laps ticked off.

As it got down to the few remaining laps left, things started getting crazy — as they normally do at the end of the 500. I have had the Daytona speed week on TV while in the garage this last week and caught interviews and summaries. One kid that caught my eye was Trevor Bayne. He is a Sprint Cup rookie and hails from down the street in Tennessee. In his interview he brought up his Christian faith which immediately bubbled him up on my list of favorite NASCAR drivers. It would be interesting to watch this new 20 year old in this highly competitive sport of stock car racing.

So fast forward to the last handful of laps of the Daytona 500. Trevor and another favorite of mine, David Ragan, were paired up helping each other, at times, leading the race. It was cool to see two young racers with zero cup wins between them lead a pack of hungry veterans who have won before. On a restart, David Regan dropped down low and broke a NASCAR rule I didn’t know existed and he was black flagged a lap. Couple this with a wreck and you had Trevor leading for a green, white, checker finish. He was able to fend off some awesome drivers to cross the finish line first making him the youngest Daytona 500 driver. He didn’t even know how to get to victory lane which was pretty funny. But the best thing was his post-race interview and acknowledgement of God.

Fox interviewer — You are a Daytona 500 winner. Has it sunk in?

Trevor Bayne — No. I keep thinking I’m dreaming; I really do. I mean, I, man, we said a prayer before, you know, we pray a lot, and we expect a lot of things but this just shows how powerful God is. Man, I am so thankful for the job that these guys did on this race car because its unbelievable. I mean, this thing is….our first 500, are you kidding me? To win our first one, our second ever cup race. I mean this is just incredible. I can’t thank the guys that worked with me all day enough. I mean, there were 10, 15 different drivers that pushed us. Carl helped us there to get across the line. I don’t know what happened with David there that one point but, wow, this is unbelievable! I mean, these guys, Ford, Ford Motorcraft, the Wood Brothers. How cool is it to see the Wood Brothers back in victory lane. You got Leonard over here, he is the man. And, uh, you know, I just, it’s unbelievable. Thanks to Sprint and everybody for the series. Thanks for the fans that are out here. I mean, I’ve never been to a racetrack with this many people here and to win on this kind of platform is just incredible.”

And to also hear Carl Edwards commend Trevor as a really good guy was cool. Looks like I need to go get some #21 Trevor Bayne stuff.

Congratulations, Trevor! What an exciting Cinderella story.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net