DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (August 27, 2022) – I didn’t cover any other stories for Sunday because I expected to be writing about the race. Turns out Mother Nature had other plans.

But it’s not been a total wash.

Starting with the sweet gal who registered my credentials Friday straight up until Saturday night when they postponed the race, even with the rain, it’s been amazing.

Spending the last 24 hours off and on in the media room as some of NASCAR’s most high profile drivers came through for interviews, it’s been one eye opener after another. Granted, I rarely watch the press interviews with drivers or if I do it’s trackside. This has been a reminder that even though these are guys who drive like bats out of Hell for a living, absolute professionals in their industries at best, they are also humans with lives and families, cares and worries, just like the rest of us.

Joey Logano talks TV, the track and teams during the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at the Daytona International Speekway on Friday.

It was a tiny peek behind the curtain at some of the world’s fastest drivers.

I’ll admit I didn’t think of Bubba Wallace as a funny guy, but he was, and hearing him say he had to earn his wins planted a seed of respect for him. Aric Almirola’s openness about the joy of helping coach his son’s baseball team, Joey Logano’s super laid back vibe, and Truex, Jr.’s analytical delivery, were glimpses of each driver’s personality, making it easier to connect them to their style of driving on the track.

And then there was the elephant in the room.

When Kyle Busch rescheduled his Friday media presser for Saturday, everyone’s interest was piqued. Either he was coming in to say he was retiring or coming in to announce a deal. Taking center stage on Saturday promptly at 4 p.m., he let it rip – the announcement is … there is no announcement. A funny moment for everyone waiting with bated breath to see what he would say.

Kidding around with the press, it was the cool side of Kyle Busch. The side that’s grown up from the hot headed youth of yesterday into a mature driver and businessman who understands what’s at stake and has developed the finesse to balance it all.

Full disclosure, I’m 99 percent sure everyone who covers NASCAR secretly has a favorite driver. Mine is Kyle Busch. My love of NASCAR started in the very early 2000s when my friend Dave would always have the races on when our families hung out. Tony Stewart was his driver and he would have walked through fire for that guy.

I don’t know when Kyle Busch became my driver but it was sometime during that period because I would talk with the guys at work about drivers – one in particular was a big Ryan Newman fan. Dave would go with me to the Rolex 24 or the Daytona 500 because my family was into football, not fast cars.

Starting at WNZF NewsRadio early in my career I met my first NASCAR drivers, Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski when Terry Turner and Randy Dye were hosting a Trackside radio show meet and greet event at the Daytona AutoMall.



Later I got to meet Kyle Busch at the M&Ms store in Orlando, and after solidifying my support, the only other driver I would cheer for was Danica Patrick because she was a b****s girl in the sport.

But back to this weekend.

I won’t even pretend not to be in awe.

President of the Daytona International Speedway Frank Kelleher joins Sarah Reece, Marketing Director for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, North Dakota rancher Clark Price, Vice Chair of the NCBA Federation Division, and retired NASCAR driver Richard Childress to announce the continuation of the NCBA’s partnership.

It’s my first time getting to cover NASCAR live and sitting in the media room processing photos, researching details, getting the info on the announcements today like the Princess Cruise contest opening up September 2nd with Trackhouse Racing (Pitbull is a team partner) to give away 10 cruises if their guys come in the Top 10 and if their driver Daniel Suarez wins at Homestead to give away 99 cruises (for real) in honor of his race car number, I’m taking copious notes.

Princess Cruise Lines President John Padgett, NASCAR driver Daniel Suarez and Trackhouse Racing team owner Justin Marks announce promotional contest during the Coke Zero Sugar 400 on Saturday, August 27, 2022.

And then there was the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association sponsorship of the Xfinity Series ‘Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner 300’ next year that caught my attention (along with the half dozen cowboys hanging out with Richard Childress and talking about Tomahawk steaks) because we have an awesome Cattleman’s Association here in Flagler. I was able to interview a super nice rancher from North Dakota, and the association even catered a buffet dinner. It was beef for dinner, and it was delicious. Thank you!

It’s just been this really neat look at what goes on behind the scenes.

Confidence radiated from NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace while talking with reporters on August 26, 2022 at the Daytona International Speedway.

Now for the seasoned reporter covering their 150th race, maybe the shiny has dulled a little, but for me it’s a personal milestone of professional achievement. It’s the learning of something new, getting to do something new, especially something I’m interested in with local and regional implications, that has made this whole experience even more fantastic.

So while the race is postponed tonight and set for Sunday at 10 am, it’s an extra day to expand on the opportunity to develop great stories about NASCAR, the Daytona International Speedway, and of course, who’s going to win tomorrow.

One thing’s for sure.

At the World Center of Racing, you just never know how it’s going to work out.