Monday, October 12, 2009

A Good Show at California

Photo by Jerry Markland / Getty Images Sport

Yeah, I said it. The Pepsi 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California was a good race. The fans actually got to see passing, some rather dramatic racing, and of course a few crashes. In other words, not what many fans have come to expect from California, myself included.

It was heartening to see a good show at Fontana for a change, much as we did during Saturday's Nationwide race as well.

From the reports I've read so far, the race was not enjoyed by a huge crowd, which typifies nearly all the races at California. Those who did buy tickets got their moneys worth though.

At times, the racing on the 2 mile super speedway almost resembled the action at Talladega. I was honestly surprised, and pleasantly so.

What wasn't a big surprise, however, was the outcome of the race. Jimmie Johnson obviously had a very good car, and probably no one else in the field, save pole sitter Denny Hamlin had such a dominant car on Sunday. Denny crashed after a restart, taking himself out of contention.

If all the races at Fontana were as enjoyable as the Pepsi 500, I would withdraw all the complaints I've ever made about the track. Hopefully, Sunday's trend will continue into 2010 and beyond, because California is obviously going to have 2 dates, no matter what happens.

Hopefully, the fans will begin to support the track and buy tickets. If you thought about going to the race Sunday and didn't, you missed a heck of a show.

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