Road Courses Are a Gas

It’s Father’s Day tomorrow and there is no better thing to do with your dad, especially if he is a NASCAR lover, than sit down and watch the Toyota/SaveMart 350 at Infineon Raceway.

When I first started to get interested in NASCAR I hated the road courses like Infineon but as my knowledge and appreciation of the sport grew, so did my love of road courses.

There are a lot of technical driving skills needed to perform well on a road course.

Instead of hating road courses, I now wish there were a few more road races on the NASCAR schedule, with one being in The Chase.

I hope this upcoming race will have as an exciting ending as last weekend’s race at MIS. I turned the TV on with about 20 laps left in the race and watched Johnson and Biffle fight it out for the lead only to have Johnson run out of gas with one lap left and then Biffle doing the same thing shortly after handing the first place spot and the eventual win to Mark Martin. Martin knew he had a fast car but put it in conservation mode to save gas so he could get a good finish and stay in the top 12 of the standings.

Biffle and Johnson just raced each other too hard and burned up their fuel while Martin stayed his course and conserved his fuel right up to the checkered flag.

Fuel mileage races are starting to become more common place this year and I wouldn’t be surprised if this weekend’s race came down to fuel mileage as well.

The drivers to watch this week are Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson but I would also keep an eye on Juan Montoya, Mark Martin, Kyle Busch and the Australian driver Marcos Ambrose.

One thing about road courses is that some teams decide to sit their regular drivers and bring in road racing “ringers” like Canadian Ron Fellows who will be in No. 09 Miccosukee Resort & Gaming car owned by James Finch with technical support from Hendrick Motorsports.

Other road course experts who will be in this race are Brian Simo, Boris Said, Max Papis, P.J. Jones and, the other Canadian in the field, Patrick Carpentier.

Out of this group I’d be watching Carpentier because he will be replacing NASCAR regular Michael Waltrip in his No. 55 NAPA Toyota which is a good car to be in.

Honestly, it really wouldn’t surprise me to see a Canadian sweep of the top two spots in tomorrow’s race. That would be cool. In fact that would be a great Father’s Day treat.