Thursday, February 28, 2013

Two More Views of Daytona Wreck

You can never have enough of these crowd shots of bad wrecks.

This is the best one so far

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Mayhem at Daytona

It finally happened. After years and and years of dodging bullets with these big crashes at Talladega and Daytona, NASCAR had the wreck they've been denying. A car flew into the fence and fans were injured by debris. A tire actually flew twenty rows up into the stands. A tire flew into the stands at Charlotte Motor Speedway in 1999 during an Indy car race. That tire killed three people. Yesterday NASCAR got lucky. They have been bunching up their cars by using restrictor plates and last lap crashes at the start finish line are now standard and very scary. I think one of the reasons is the safety of the cars. Drivers now accept wrecking at 190 mph at the finish line because they know they are going to walk away. It wasn't like that in the 1990s before Earnhardt died. Today there will be a Daytona 500 and fans will be sitting in the lower grandstand next to the fence. Let's hope the big wreck at the end of this race doesn't injure more fans.

Maybe yesterday's wreck will cause NASCAR to finally seriously look at altering these tracks so the cars can race there without restrictor plates. The only real choice is to lower the banking at Daytona and Talladega. That will cause a lot of whining with the fans but if you lower the banking enough at these tracks and keep the top speeds under 210 then you will have a field more spread out and you won't have last lap carnage and fan injuries which is what we have now.

I know NASCAR representatives and race announcers (sometimes the same thing) are going to talk about how this wreck was a rarity. That is bull. After Dale Earnhardt died the Charlotte Observer published an investigative piece on deaths at racetracks around the country and it was sobering. There is no such thing as a freak accident or an accident that could never have been predicted. NASCAR knows that big packs at high speeds cause cars to fly into the fences. A similar wreck took place in 1996 at Talladega. NASCAR knows this is dangerous. They've done nothing to really address this issue. They are fully responsible through their neglect for the fan injuries yesterday. They need to fix this.

There are a couple of fan videos of the wreck. These views from the stands are incredible and terrifying.

This guy was sitting a few seats over from where the tire landed. Kudos to the fan who takes his shirt off and tends to the inured person.

This is a shot closer to turn 4. You can see the tire fly off.

This is from higher up but the car hits the fence right in front of you. Terrifying. This video shows really well how much distance these cars cover during the wreck.

A view from the infield

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Intentional Holding

Today I learned that the Baltimore Ravens offensive line blatantly held the 49ers defenders during the play where the Ravens punter took a safety. They did that because the penalty for holding in the end zone is No matter what happens the time runs off the clock and they give the ball over to the 49ers. Committing the holding penalty doesn't hurt the Ravens. In fact since it extends the play, breaking the rules helps them in this situation.

What is interesting is that before I read this blog post by Joe Posnanski I was unaware that this had taken place. Watch the replay below and check out how the Ravens players are wrestling the 49ers rushers. It's comical. You can view the play here.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Wintery Morning

This morning Melanie and I got out of the house and walked the neighborhood so we could take in some of the winter scenery before the snow melted today. I almost busted my ass on some ice. It was a great save.

A shed!!!

A house!

Cherry blossoms in the snow

More blossoms

Stupid joggers

The house across the street

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Individual Star Wars Characters to get Movies?

The gaming website Kotaku published a story saying that at the very least we will get a Boba Fett movie and a Han Solo movie. Done right this could be great. One of my biggest complaints about Star Wars after the first two movies was that the franchise got caught up in the Big Story of the creation of Darth Vader and the rise and fall of the Empire. What made the first Star Wars movie great was that the Empire and how it worked wasn't really important. Darth Vader was evil and Luke and Han had to save the princess who ended up saving them. Shit blew up, Han Solo was funny and everyone loved it. Now, if we can get movies focusing on Boba Fett and Han Solo that have nothing to do with the Big Story then we could have something to sit back and enjoy. How about a move featuring Han Solo that is about nothing more than a smuggling trip gone wrong? If you needed to you could even loosely tie it into the Big Story by having the movie be about the smuggling mission that got him into trouble with Jabba the Hut. My money is on that, by the way.