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On to Vegas! If You Don’t Want To Watch – Don’t February 25, 2009

Posted by claireblang in 2009 Season, Trackside.
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Hey all! Here’s my broadcast schedule this weekend:

Wed. (Feb 25) 7-10 p.m. EST (“Dialed In” – LIVE from Satellite Studios at Claire’s House)
Thurs. (Feb 26) 7-10 p.m. EST (“Dialed In” from Las Vegas Motor Speedway LIVE)
Friday (Feb 27) “Dialed In” – On after Sprint Cup Series Qualifying until 11 p.m. EST

Saturday (Feb 28) 2-4 EST – “Dialed In” pre Nationwide Race
AND “Dialed In from the end of the Nationwide Race until 10 p.m. EST

Sunday (Mar 1)
CBL Anchors pre race with Steve Post 12:30 -2:30 p.m. EST pre race

Post Race: CBL live in victory lane — with SIRUS TEAM until 11 p.m. EST

NOTE TO ALL: Thanks for all the emails at insidercbl [at] aol [dot] com. I have gotten a bit behind from my normal mode of answering all emails just because of the trip from Daytona to California and back to Vegas. Be patient if you have not had an answer yet – and keep sending the emails I love them. Thanks – great conversation and I appreciate it.

Here’s something to chew over:
If You Don’t Want To Watch – Don’t
Covering Auto Club Speedway – On to Vegas!

Ok – I’m going to say it – and it’s unlike me to be so up on the wheel. I am not afraid to say what the heck it is that is on my mind. No one has ever told me not to. But in the world of cynical journalism – I have looked around and I guess that I have figured that I am simply the eternal optimist.

I usually see the best in people and while I relish good hard questioning of the values and rules and officiating of our sport each week, which is good healthy discussion, and callers who might ask the hard questions, which is also good, I am not one to want to spend hour after hour of my life on national radio being unduly negative.

I want to hammer home the truth, ask the question others may not and dig deep for the real story –even when its tough tickets or may cause uneasiness – it’s the job of a journalist. I just am interested in doing it in a way that does not include bashing for the sake of bashing. Salt in the soup is good. A vat of salt is too much to take. Enough said.

I have a new philosophy. That is this – if anyone listening doesn’t like the racing, or a particular track or our sport– then don’t watch, don’t listen and don’t come. Let folks who have saved their money to go, finally got a day off work, or carved out precious time in the week to enjoy the sport they love have some fun.

I repeat, I am not looking for a ban on great discussion- even rants and arguing or mentions of dislikes and fan to driver rants— not at all. In fact, bring it on. I don’t even expect you to understand how I feel – because it’s hard to explain. If I’m wrong tell me – black flag me – and tell me to my face on the radio.

Here it is. I get calls occasionally from race fans who are going to their first race, taking their wife to their first race, or going to the race they have gone to for twenty years. I hear the excitement in their voices as they call in on the air and they sound like people I could be friends with. I’d love to sit next to them or camp next to them cause I can hear right through the radio what genuine people they are and I only know them from what they say from the heart and it touches me.

Occasionally they will tell me that they are having hard financial times but they found a way to go to the race and they are so excited they almost can’t stand it — that their race weekend has started. I actually get to feeling happy for them that they are going to have some fun in these tough times. They are packed up, they are on their way, they are at the campground, they are hunkering down at home in front of the TV to watch and they love racing.

Mind you- I am not trying to sell tickets with the above comments or to fill up race tracks. I cover what happens. I don’t try to make the news. I am telling you, though, that I hear such excitement and happiness in the voices of these callers and I am so happy for them and so appreciate that they would call my show and I want to be able to talk racing with them, have fun doing it, enjoy the discussion – and leave them less than beaten down and depressed for planning the trip and calling or tuning into my show.

Ok – yes, I know I’ll get letters from people who had a problem and didn’t have fun because of a logistic issue – and when you gather that many people in one spot that happens. I also know that I was working in the media center and had media access so I enjoyed it from a different level. I always seek to find the story of the race, that no one thought of –and I really enjoy trying to find that ever elusive nugget that will make following the race more interesting. It seems I am never bored with trying to find that story – and dig deep into it.

You know – I’m just the kind of person that covers what is there – I work to bring what is happening to life. Maybe that is it – I’m not trying to change it – I am simply covering it and I find our sport fascinating every single minute of every single race. Some races are more exciting than others – but I really never ever am uninspired by what there is to cover.

I can always find a story waiting around the next turn.

Talk to you on the radio!
Claire B

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Comments»

1. Diane - February 25, 2009

My cousin, his wife and their 5 year old granddaughter attended their first ever Nascar race last Sunday in Fontana. When they first mentioned this to me, in the form of asking me what should we bring/do etc. I almost cringed at the thought – of California Speedway being anyone’s first race but then also at the 500 and a 5 year old. But I bit my tongue, suggested earplugs for sure, a scanner or fan scan and mentioned that they might want to be prepared to leave early as I was afraid it would be a looonnggg day for a 5 year old. Today my cousin told me about what a wonderful time they had, how the 5 year old LOVED it, and they hung to the very end, what an exciting race, and how it was a once-in-a lifetime experience. I was so glad I that I had kept my own personal thoughts on Fontana to myself and allowed them to experience this as newbies without my filter slapped on to their experience.

2. Ken - February 26, 2009

I’ll watch the race on Sunday because I’m stuck in the house for the next 5 weeks due to surgery. I normally do productive things while the race is on and spend about an hour watching the race later on my DVR (and I don’t miss a thing other than Digger and DW rants).

3. Jim - February 26, 2009

Claire- you’ve said it well. For example, besides my work, I once followed the NBA as a fan. Somewhere along the line, the game ceased to be the one I enjoyed. It didn’t seem to make any sense to sit adn grumble about- I mean it wasn’t like David Stern had me on the phone begging for mercy.
I just stopped watching.
It makes me wonder how much people REALLY hate what’s going on in NASCAR.Sometimes I just think people like to gripe.


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