The Wood Brothers are in the Daytona 500. Driver Bill Elliott went from “fastest” during practice to a five spot during qualifying. Even during that run he was fastest at a point but whatever force it is that pushes the accelerator back against Bill’s shoe leather showed itself in the final turn. Right now, Bill and the #21 Motorcraft Ford are set for a dozen races in 2009. Here is at least one “Best Wishes” for a top 10 finish at the Daytona 500. Yes, a win would be better, of course. But let’s get this historic team some added sponsorship for 2009 and get them in some more races. A top 10 may accomplish this for them.
Another underdog to pull for could be Mike Wallace in the #71 TRG Chevy. They physically ran 46th during qualifying and will run Thursday in the second race of the Gatorade Duel at Daytona. If Wallace can climb that field and he can get a spot this new team will be in the field on Sunday. Let’s be honest. A win for the #71 on Sunday would earn you retirement on Vegas odds. However, it is not this team’s goal to win on Sunday. All they need is some lap time for the new car and to climb a few positions from where they start. That would be a big success for the Grand-Am veterans and push another team into the running for 2009. The 71 car just needs to get in.
Two cars, two teams. One has heritage and a name so linked to the sport of NASCAR racing that you can’t split the two with a crobar. The other is new and pushing the foot through the door. A little luck for both teams this week could push them both well into 2009. It doesn’t matter what hat you wear on race day, these two teams deserve a few front stretch cheers as the call goes out to start the engines. Let’s go racing and go 21 and go 71. Race to win. Race to get in.