Friday, February 28, 2014

Daytona weekend

Hey you guys. This is my take on the Daytona weekend.

Friday was the Truck race. Kyle Busch won with 25 laps led, followed by Timothy Peters, Johnny Sauter, Ryan Truex and Ron Hornaday, Jr.  Rounding out the top-ten were Ryan Blaney, Jeb Burton, Joe Nemechek,  Jimmy Weller and German Quiroga. Pole-sitter Ben Kennedy was 15th with 52 laps led.  Travis Kvapil, the 22nd place finisher led 3 laps.

Saturday was the Nationwide race. Regan Smith won with 35 laps led, followed by Brad Keselowski who led 11 laps, Trevor Bayne, Kyle Busch, who led 44 laps and Elliot Sadler. Rounding out the top-10 were Brendan Gaughn, rookies Ty Dillon and  pole-sitter Dylan Kwasniewski, then Ryan Sieg and Kyle Larson, who led a lap. Dale Earnhardt, Jr., the 11th place finisher led 28 laps and 27th place finisher Jamie Dick led 2 laps as well.

The Cup had two more practices on Saturday as well. Ricky Stenhouse. Jr. was fastest in the first one, followed by Greg Biffle ,  Danica Patrick, David Gilliland , Tony Stewart , Jeff Gordon,  Paul Menard,  Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne and Denny Hamlin.   Kurt Busch was fastest in the final practice followed by  Kasey Kahne,  Jamie McMurray, Carl Edwards, Martin Truex. Jr., Clint Bowyer, Jeff Gordon, Kevin Harvick, Ricky Stenhouse. Jr. and Bobby Labonte .

 Sunday was the Cup race.  NASCAR's weird, my dad says to have their biggest race the first week when most sports have theirs last.  They call the Daytona 500 the Super Bowl of NASCAR, since it's their biggest race, like the Super Bowl's the big game of football, which I decided I didn't like somewhere after my sporty phase I had as a kid (it started when I was about 7 and ended when I was 11) and by 17. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was the winner (my dad liked that) with 54 laps led, followed by Denny Hamlin with 16 laps led ,  Brad Keselowski with 13 laps led, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson with 15 laps led. Rounding out the top-10 were Matt Kenseth , Ricky Stenhouse. Jr., Greg Biffle with 8 laps led , rookie and polesitter Austin Dillon with 1 lap led and Casey Mears. Joey Logano, the 11th place finisher led 2 laps.  Carl Edwards, the 17th place finisher led 8 laps.  Kyle Busch, whose finish was 19th led 19 laps and his older brother Kurt Busch, the 21st place finisher led 15 laps.  A. J. Allmendinger, the 26th place finisher led a lap.  There was a late race accident that ended rookies Justin Allgaier, 26th place finisher after 4 laps led, Cole Whitt and Parker Kligerman's night. Kasey Kahne was 31st after leading two laps. Paul Menard was 32nd after 29 laps led.  Trevor Bayne ran strong with 2 laps led but hit the wall late and finished 33rd . There was an accident a bit before this that ended the night of rookies Michael Annett and Kyle Larson as well as Aric Almirola who finished 39th after 5 laps led, Danica Patrick ,the 40th place finisher with 2 laps led and 41st place Michael Waltrip after he led 4 laps. Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex, Jr, who was Bowyer's teammate last year had engine issues that ruined their nights.

The Chase, which is like the Cup playoff will have 16 drivers with four eliminated from contention every three races with the last four standing at the final race in a winner-take-all situation then.  The highest finisher of the four in that race is champion.  The lower series still use the old way of most points all season.  My two favorite drivers are possible contenders for their championships. Joey Logano, currently just outside the top-10 could win multiple races this year and be one of the final four.  Trevor Bayne's a potential Nationwide title contender, if his MS stays in check. He's a well spoken young man and has one of the best personalities in NASCAR, so he could be a spokesman to help push to find a cure for the disease, I read somewhere.    He's in second place six points behind leader Regan Smith.  He needs to avoid the problems of last year, which were just bad situations that got him in a points hole, like car trouble and race incidents, as well as a penalty, so he can win and finish top-5 more. His performance is unaffected he says.  He has a full-time sponsor now, Advocare and Travis Pastrana left Nationwide, but Chris Buescher and Ryan Reed are still around. Pastrana may have dragged the team down and not have been a good teammate, but Buescher and Reed who shared a Roush ride last year should be better teammates.  They're full time now. Buescher failed to qualify at Daytona, though. By the way, my family has had some more personal connections to MS.  When I was a kid, my mom took care of a neighbor lady with it. She died of a stroke and my mom got another job then, which she retired from just before Christmas. A woman who went to our church before she moved to Missouri's another MSer my family knew.  She's in a wheelchair now.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Speedweeks Start

Well everyone. It's baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack! NASCAR that is. Speedweeks is here. I don't usually cover practices, but other than the Unlimited, it's all practice and qualifying and I'm making sure it's substantial enough.

There was the Sprint Unlimited and Daytona 500 practice last week. The Sprint Unlimited practice sessions were Friday and the race was Saturday night.  Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was fastest in the first practice and Denny Hamlin was fastest in the second. He won the race from the pole.  There was a lot of cars wrecked, so only eight were running at the end. Behind Hamlin were Brad Keselwoski, Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick,  Jamie McMurray, Marcos Ambrose and Ryan Newman. Dale Earnhardt, Jr was ninth, but crashed with ten laps to go. All the others crashed on laps 35 or in the case of Jimmie Johnson 28, except Terry Labonte, who had a vibration after only one lap and parked. The first two Daytona 500  practices were Saturday, one in the morning and the other in afternoon.  Paul Menard was fastest in the first followed by Ryan Newman, Matt Kenseth,  rookie Austin Dillon, another rookie Brian Scott, Martin Truex, Jr. Greg Biffle, Marcos Ambrose, Joey Logano and Trevor Bayne to round out the top 10. Ryan Newman was fastest in the second followed by his teammate rookie Austin Dillon, another rookie Kyle Larson,  Kevin Harvick, Casey Mears, Marcos Ambrose, Greg Biffle, rookie Brian Scott, Jimmie Johnson and Aric Almirola to round out the top 10.

There was a qualifying session on Sunday to set the front row, more practice  plus the qualifying races called Budweiser Duels which set positions three to thirty-two this week. Austin Dillon and Martin Truex, Jr. are the front row, which was set Sunday, so unless either one blows an engine  or is in need of a backup car come race day they're set. If either one has go to the back, a Duel winner will be the  replacement. Wednesday's first practice had some wrecks in it.  Brian Vickers and Cole Whitt were involved in the first and Joey Logano caused the second when he hit Matt Kenseth. Parker Kligerman got the worst of it, but Ryan Truex, Dave Blaney, who went home as he has no backup car, Casey Mears and Trevor Bayne.  T-Bayne was the Birthday Boy that day and had just some nose damage, it appears. This wreck ended the practice. A. J. Allmendinger was fastest followed by Brian Vickers, Joey Logano, Trevor Bayne, Michael Waltrip, Ryan Truex, Jamie McMurray, Alex Bowman, Dave Blaney and Casey Mears to round out the top-ten.  Denny Hamlin was fastest in the second practice that day, followed by Kasey Kahne, Michael Waltrip, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Greg Biffle, Eric McClure, Clint Boywer, Brian Scott, Matt Kenseth and Austin Dillon to round out the top ten.  The drivers whose performance in the Duels means they make the race based on that are Matt Kenseth, Denny Hamlin(won their Duels), Kasy Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Marcos Ambrose, Kurt Busch, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Paul Menard, Josh Wise, Brian Scott, Aric Almirola, Trevor Bayne, A. J. Allmendinger, Kyle Larson,  David Gilliland, Landon Cassill, Ryan Newman, Clint Bowyer, Tony Stewart, Jamie McMurry, Cole Whitt, Terry Labonte, Greg Biffle, Bobby Labonte, Danica Patrick, Casey Mears, Alex Bowman, Carl Edwards, Brian Vickers and Jimmie Johnson. The rest of the field was set by speed and owner points provisionals as past champions made it in via qualifying speed and the Duels.

The Truck and Nationwide series had practice as well.  The Trucks had three practices and the Nationwide had two.   Ben Kennedy was fastest in the first Truck practice, followed by Ron Hornaday, Jr., Matt Crafton, Joey Coulter, John Wes Townley, Johnny Sauter, Ryan Sieg,  Joe Nemechek, Parker Kligerman and Jeb Burton to round out the top ten.  Rookie Tyler Reddick was fastest in the second Truck practice followed by Ryan Blaney, Ryan Truex, Darrell Wallace, Jr., John Wes Townley,  Tyler Young, Jeb Burton, Timothy Peters and John King to round out the top ten.  Ryan Blaney was fastest in the final Truck practice, followed by Kyle Busch, Matt Crafton, Ross Chastain, Jeb Burton, Joe Nemechek, John Wes Townley, Timothy Peters, rookie Mason Mingus and Chris Cockrum to round out the top ten.  Elliot Sadler was fastest in the first Nationwide practice followed by Matt Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., rookie Ryan Sieg, Brad Keselowski, Brian Scott, rookie Chase Elliot, Trevor Bayne and David Ragan to round out the top-ten. Bobby Gerhart was fastest in the final Nationwide practice followed by Scott Lagasse, Jr., rookies Ryan Reed, Dakota Armstrong and Chris Buescher, then Trevor Bayne (Reed and Buescher's teammate), Mike Wallace, Joe Nemechek, Johnny Sauter and Brendan Gaughan to round out the top ten.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Personalities+NASCAR Preseason

Sometimes, I take personality quizzes online.  One sort of test like this involves four personalities, sanguine, choleric, phlegmatic and melancholic or some variant of this.  I always test as choleric or sanguine or a blend of these two. This theory says people have two main ones, with maybe a small amount of a third.  Phlegmatic would be third, since I don't have too many melancholic tendencies. I'm deep, but that's about it. Sanguine and choleric are the extraverted temperaments.  Phlegmatic and melancholic are introverted. Sanguine and phlegmatic are people oriented, while choleric and melancholic are task oriented. The natural blends are double extravert, introvert, or double people oriented, task oriented. Basically, one trait has to carry over for the blend to be real. Some people have learned to act a certain way and have unnatural blends, like choleric with phlegmatic or melancholic and sanguine.

Sanguine/choleric mixture can have either one dominant at a given time, as this can be a 50/50.  This is a talkative, energetic, busy type of person.  These are confident, optimistic people.  The emotions are strong and come quickly with these people. The double extravert creates this. Sanguine's a dominate the conversation type, which I can be.  A person with this element to their personality will be sensitive to people and what people think of them, funny, spunky, enthusiastic, happy, mostly, changeable emotionally and creative. Sanguines like bright colors and are fond of accessories.   Choleric people are leaders, quick to show anger, intense, passionate, workaholic, driven, take charge, forceful and assertive people. They tend to be strong willed and goal-oriented. Loyalty matters to these types, but they can be pushy and rude. Cholerics are practical dressers. Blended together, these types make someone a good boss.  The choleric lends an organization and tempers the playfulness of the sanguine part, as that side's disorganized and messy more.  Sanguine calms to workaholic tendencies choleric adds and makes the person nicer, since choleric has insensitivity.  I have a lot of this in me.  I try to be sweet and usually am, but I can be rude. "I’m enthusiastic, sensitive, happy, creative, have strong emotions and can up and down quickly, sweet, energetic, talkative, strong-willed, passionate and someone thought I’d be a good boss when I was in college. Sometimes, I hurt people but I don’t mean to and I hate when I do. I don’t like to make people feel bad." This is a comment I made on a personality blog, so I copied and pasted it here. It's mine, but I quoted it to show I used it elsewhere.

Sanguine/phlegmatic blends an extravert and an introvert personality, so one likely dominates.  This is a double people oriented blend and is said to be likeable.  Sanguine traits counter phlegmatic sluggishness. Phlegmatic's a stubborn sort at times, but different stubborn from choleric.  It's more a bump on a log type thing.  They're usually easygoing and laid back, but can be stubborn about doing anything.  They show little emotion and are quiet.  They like to sit on the sidelines and watch. They have a dry humor.  They like casual, muted clothing.  The calm, quiet kid in the corner no ones notices is likely to have phlegmatic.  They are patient and tend to blend in.  They like to interact with people, but those whose phlegmatic dominates are limited to small doses of interaction.  Sanguine adds energy and phlegmatic adds emotional stability.

Phlegmatic/melancholic blends the introverts, which means 50/50 can happen here too.  My mom's this type, melancholic with phlegmatic.  Her twin brother resembles her emotionally, so he's a melancholic blend too, she thinks. Melancholic has perfectionist in it which leads to a trickiness in this blend due to phlegmatic's easygoing ways, I've read. Melancholic people are sensitive, but may not always show it, quiet, task oriented, reluctant leaders and have a sense of humor but are selective about sharing it.  These people are deep, easily embarrassed and hurt, self-conscious, intuitive, empathetic, moody, sentimental and creative.  They show the perfectionism in how they dress. Phlegmatic added to this makes a kind person. They're not easy to get to know, due to their introversion, but make good friends, since they're kind.  Phlegmatic tempers the perfectionism so they can relax some and melancholic adds a doer element.

Choleric/melancholic blends an extravert  and introvert , so like sanguine/phlegmatic one or the other dominates.  These people are sometimes thought robotic because they're totally task oriented.  These people are mission minded perfectionists, so they tend to be teacher's and bosses' pets. These people are highly successful due to their task orientedness and high standards. Melancholic lends sensitivity and humor, which they share with friends, to this blend and choleric can help them to lead others because it takes some of the edge off melancholic's reluctance. 

NASCAR has had preseason activity this month and have their first race this Saturday. It's a shootout, non-points event called the Sprint Unlimited. To preview the season, they had Fan Appreciation Day. They had a morning session, then after cleanup, an afternoon session. Some drivers, including what they call NASCAR Next and the Hall of Fame member and inductees had appearances and Q and A
sessions.  They had a media tour as well. Some drivers tested at the Nashville track, which used to be a minor league (Truck and Nationwide) track, but now is only a test track.  Kasey Kahne, Casey Mears, Greg Biffle, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Trevor Bayne, Joey Logano, Paul Menard, Ryan Newman, Aric Almirola, Jeff Burton, Ryan Truex, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Carl Edwards were part of this. I couldn't find their speeds. Three drivers, Trevor Bayne, Michael Annet and Reed Sorenson tested at Talladega and T-Bayne was the fastest in the test.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Autism Reading+Movies

Over the course of many years, I've read some stuff about autism and seen some movies. Here's a list.
Magazine articles about autistic boys and girls
Things online
Temple Grandin books. She came to a town near me to give a talk about cattle and another about autism. I went to the latter with my mom and we met her. I was in high school then
George and Sam
Louder Than Words
Mother Warriors
The Small Outsider ( autistic boy story. read an abridged version in a Reader's Digest Condensed Books from an apartment complex my mom took care of some people at. It has a little library.)
Healing and Preventing Autism
Carly's Voice
Let Me Hear Your Voice
The Autism Revolution
Conquering Autism
The Golden Hat
Eating an Artichoke. This one's about a boy with Asperger's
The Sensory Child Gets Organized (mention autism and other issues)
A Child's Journey Out of Autism
Healing the New Childhood Epidemics Written by a doctor.  autism and a few other issues)  The 4-A he calls them
The Spark  The boy's autistic with a high IQ and he's a math and science prodigy.
My parents watched Mercury Rising and Rain Man when I was young for grown-up movies like these, but I watched some others with them
Fielder's Choice (it was one I didn't think of until the last day of April)
Temple Grandin movie
A Mile in His Shoes
A Christmas Miracle (I think that's what it's called. There's an autistic boy in it)
Season of Miracles
End Note: I know what happened yesterday, but not a football fan. My dad is, though and his team for the night lost. He has no strong favorites in the NFL, but said he liked the Broncos for the game.