Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Start of the 24

Greetings from the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona!

The run up to the race was intense over the last couple days, as teams struggled to get their cars running and handling well with only three hours of practice and ten minutes of qualifying.

Even today started slowly, with drivers, teams, and fans trickling into Daytona International Speedway throughout the morning. Then all of a sudden, it was time for the drivers meeting, the autograph session, a quick bite to eat, and a team photo. By then, everything snowballed. 2:05: drivers dashing to pit lane for introductions on the pre-grid stage. The grid opened, and fans were everywhere.

I took the opportunity to walk up onto the banking of Daytona's front straight (check out the angle above), to pose with the wall (second photo above) and sign the start/finish line ... for both me and Kate Reilly.

Then back through the crowd in pit lane to the team pit wall, where I stood and watched Bob Varsha do the intro for the SPEED coverage and Juan Pablo Montoya be mobbed by fans. Before we knew it, the pace car was peeling off the track, and we were green, green, green!

And that's the next chapter. Stay tuned! (Also follow me on Twitter @tkaehler for more updates.)

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