Cagle: Random thoughts from Round 2

By: By Andy Cagle - Contributing columnist

While this has been a sad week in general with the senseless violence in Las Vegas, I have to take a minute to recognize the passing of Robert Yates.

The long-time NASCAR team owner died Monday after a lengthy battle with cancer. Yates, who hired Davey Allison as his first driver, will be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame next year.

He was a championship car owner with Dale Jarrett and, while he hasn’t owned a team in 10 years, he was a mainstay in NASCAR and racing in general with the engine program he started with fellow owner Jack Roush. If you run a Ford at any level of racing, there is a good chance it runs a Roush-Yates Engine. The guy was truly and innovator of speed and will be deeply missed.

You have to feel bad for poor Chase Elliott. He keeps chasing that first win and it keeps getting away from him.

Toothpaste is addictive for bears but toxic to dogs.

“We’re way underpaid as race car drivers. There’s no doubt, doing what we do, the schedule that we have and the danger that we incur every single week, NASCAR drivers should be making NBA, NFL money.” — Denny Hamlin

No Denny, just no. There isn’t that kind of money in NASCAR anymore.

Big surprise of the first round of the NASCAR Cup playoffs: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. He made it through to round two. I didn’t see that coming. Kurt Busch (a former champion) and the Richard Childress duo of Ryan Newman and Austin Dillon did not.

The last two speakers of the Mexican language Zoque are both in their 70s and refuse to speak to one another. The last speaker of the Amazonian Ature language was a parrot.

The first concert I ever went to was on Sept. 27, 1995. It was Tom Petty on his Wildflowers tour. Despite the fact that I was a senior in high school and went with my parents, we somehow managed to lose the car keys and, after a locksmith made a new key, I managed to make it home in time to get ready for school the next day and be on time. It was one of the seminal moments of my life. RIP Tom.

I kept up with the comments on the Daily Journal’s Facebook page on my column posting last week on the anthem flap. There was some civil discourse. That was the point.

I wrote about this last year in detail and it didn’t get any better. There are 12 drivers in the NASCAR Xfinity Series playoffs. Among the 12 of them, there are seven wins by four drivers on the season. Kyle Busch has five wins in his 10 starts in the series this year. Yeah, that’s a problem.

In the truck series, the situation is much better. The eight drivers vying for the championship have 13 wins. Kyle Busch only has three wins.

Once a year, on 15 August, Prince Hans-Adam II, the ruler of Liechtenstein, invites the whole country to a party at his house. You can also rent the entire country for $70,000 a night.

Jeff Gordon and Ryan Newman exchanged words after the race last Sunday about the way Newman raced Chase Elliott (Newman was a lap down and one could argue he held up leader Elliott allowing Kyle Busch to pass him). It got heated. That would have been the worst fight in history. Newman goes about 220 and I bet Gordon weighs maybe 160. It would have been ugly.

Very classy move by last week’s Xfinity winner Ryan Blaney to give a young fan the checkered flag during his celebration. And no burnout. I’ve said it before, but Blaney gets it.

The 1784 “Kettle War” between the Netherlands and the Holy Roman Empire involved only a single shot fired.

It hit, you guessed it, a kettle.

Andy Cagle, a former spokesman for Rockingham Speedway and motorsports public relations consultant, writes about NASCAR in a weekly column.

By Andy Cagle

Contributing columnist