Watkins Glen thoughts

So this is a little late in the week for a recap of the weekend that was, but the decision to hold off and run the thing on Monday turned out to be a grand slam for NASCAR (especially given the farce that was the Indycar race on Sunday). The Glen delivered, as it usually does, on excitement.

I was so stoked to see Marcos Ambrose finally get his first Cup win, especially after he had a sure-win taken away by a fuel conservation mistake at Sonoma last year. He went balls to the wall on that last restart to get by Brad Keselowski after Kyle Busch threw away the lead by blowing into the first turn on the Green-White-Checkered. So glad Ambrose was able to get redemption. Could not have happened to a better guy.

The day was punctuated by two vicious crashes: Denny Hamlin’s head-on romp into the tire barrier in turn one, and that wicked crash on the last lap involving David Reutimann and David Ragan. I didn’t place all the fault on Boris Said quite as clearly as everyone else, but I did agree with the consensus that the Glen, as entertaining as it is, is unbelievably outdated as far as safety goes. It was good to see Reutimann and Ragan walk away from one of the worst crashes I’ve ever seen, one that could have been at least a little less violent had there been SAFER barriers at Watkins Glen.

Overall, it was a very entertaining day in upstate NY, as the rain held off and the cream rose to the top of the field with the Aussie Ambrose taking the victory. Days like Monday are the reason that these road courses hold such novelty with fans, as they offer a great bit of change from the usual left turns. Monday was no different, as it delivered one of the most entertaining shows so far of 2011.


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