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|Speed Mail Steve|
Pit PerspectiveIt was great to see David Gilliland win the Kentucky Busch race. I've covered his dad, Butch Gilliland, for a long time when he was racing Winston West, and I've even gotten to know David a little bit over the years. Butch couldn't be a nicer guy, and his son is the same way. I'm glad he's now known as something other than somebody who played high school golf with Tiger Woods because he's a heck of a racer. It was a stunning win, and I'm thrilled. All we've been hearing about is how the Nextel Cup drivers are dominating the Busch Series this year, and here's a guy winning in only his seventh start. It should send a message to the rest of the Busch teams that if he can do it, they can do it.
Finish LineTemperatures going to be in the mid to upper 90's this weekend, and it's already a pretty demanding race track on the drivers. We always think of it being mild and pretty in the wine country, but this is a rough stretch for the teams. They go from California on Sunday to Daytona next Saturday night so they have to be focused on what's in front of them. After scoring a top-five finish at Infineon two years ago, Jimmie Johnson told his team that it seemed like a win as he crossed the start/finish line. Last year, Elliott Sadler told me that a top-15 finish would have been a great day for him, and he wound up sixth. Drivers must have a goal. For Jeff Gordon, Robby Gordon and Tony Stewart, the goal is to win, but they also have to be realistic. You can't win every race because road racing is tougher than racing at ovals so have a realistic goal and stick to your game plan.
NASCAR on FOX and SPEED host and reporter Steve Byrnes has covered racing for more than 20 years, and he gives kids a close look at a real stock car and its driver with Ryan's Racecar, a 30-minute video/DVD. For more information, go to RyansRacecar.com