So it's Off-Season now. The chaos of Homestead-Miami has settled, the banquets are over and everyone is prepping for next season. What does that leave fans with? Nothing to do but count down the days? My first Off-Season I had the same question, then I started writing for a website and now run my own blog so I've found something to keep me a little preoccupied. But that first year of Off-Season felt like the worst thing ever! I was sad at school, didn't have anything to look forward to on the weekends just that same old depressing "get through the week" scene. Sure there were holidays I could prep for but how long does it really take to get ready for Thanksgiving and Christmas? Three months? I don't think so!
So I've come up with a list of racing-related things fans can do during the Off-Season! Now I know, nothing on this earth compares to the rush we get when the green flag drops on a Sunday, but I have a question for you! Do you watch all three top-tier NASCAR series? No? Well, are you craving some racing? All the races and most interviews are posted on YouTube. All you have to do is click on the search bar and start typing the name of the race and the series. I know Xfinity and Trucks aren't everyone's forte, but if you love racing can't you give it a try? At least to see who really will be taking over the sport someday if nothing more?
If you do watch the top three tiers then I suggest looking into ARCA, and the K&N Pro Series East/West. Same deal... just start typing on YouTube and you'll get all kinds of results. Who knows maybe if we can get enough people watching the K&N Series we can actually get the races to play live on TV one day in the future? That might just be wishful thinking, but you never know what can happen if NASCAR Nation comes together as one!
If you already watch all those series, don't like YouTube, or simply just won't watch them I have another solution! This one takes up much less time, but it's a start. Books! Yes, I said books. There are all kinds of NASCAR related books on Amazon and eBay! You can get trivia books, complete history books, biographies, even race stories! There are a few I've been looking into reading myself including - Earnhardt Nation: The Full-Throttle Saga of NASCAR's First Family. Driving With The Devil: Southern Moonshine, Detroit Wheels, and The Birth Of NASCAR. Jeff Gordon: His Dream, Drive and Destiny. Then Junior Said To Jeff: Best NASCAR Stories Ever Told. He Crashed Me So I Crashed Him Back: The True Story of the Year The King, Jaws and Earnhardt and The Rest of NASCAR's Fuedin', Fightin' Good Ol' Boys Put Stock Car Racing on The Map. Flat Out and Half Turned Over: Tales from Pit Road with Buddy Baker.
See? There's all kinds of books out there on racing! But reading and watching races aren't the only things out there. There's a ton of NASCAR and car-related documentaries on YouTube. They aren't as boring as the name 'documentaries' makes them sound. Just type 'NASCAR Documentary' and you'll be busy for a while! Two of my favorites I've seen so far are Refuse to lose, The 1997 Daytona 500, and The Daytona Primetime. I've spent a good chunk of time watching NASCAR documentaries on YouTube. But theres a ton to sift through, so give them a look!
You can also find all kinds of funny Media Center stuff between drivers, one of my personal favorites is Harrison Burton's Thanksgiving comment. The drivers are goofy, we already know that, we just need to look in the right places in order to find the golden comments! If you have Snapchat add Noah Gragson, he always is posting funny stuff on there including all of his unfortunate plane rides.
If you're already on your computer look up the history of the sport, or read this article about Red Byron it's one of my favorites! There are even more articles like that one on the internet! It's a lot of fun to just sit down and find some 'raw NASCAR' to look into.
How about Podcasts? Do you like them? Never tried them? Well, get on it then! There's all kinds of NASCAR Podcasts out there! I was mentioned somewhere in Episode 8 of The Lapped Traffic Podcast, there's the Glass Case of Emotion Podcast which has Ryan Blaney in it every episode, Off Axis Paint Undefeated Podcast, PETM Racing Podcast. You can just open the Podcast app that comes with your phone and type those names or NASCAR and you'll get stuff! Or if you go to Podbean.com you can find some! Heck, even just Google 'NASCAR Podcast' You'll find some really cool stuff out there! You can even look up radio shows with driver interviews on YouTube and Google. There's all kinds of radio shows out there like Sirius XM NASCAR, or PMN Radio.
See? Not as boring as we thought! Instead of watching racing, we can just keep up with everything going on on social media, and all these other things too! It won't compare to race day, but at least it's something right?
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I'm a junior in high school but that doesn't stop me from keeping up with and bringing you the latest from NASCAR!