The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Opinion

July 14, 2014

Scott Underwood: Race gives new meaning to 'crazy 8'

Imagine an intersection with no stop signs. And no speed limit. And everyone hellbent on beating everyone else through it.

That’s figure-8 racing on the high-banked, quarter-mile oval at Anderson Speedway. The hair-raising thrill of watching the race would be exceeded only by the bladder-purging chaos of driving in it.

Well, I witnessed Saturday night’s figure-8 event in person. It was my first time. And now I’ve been ruined for all other racing.

Watching is enough for me. I’ll never drive in a figure 8 on account of principally one consideration:

• I want to live.

Figure-8 racing is a lot like other auto racing. Except that you crisscross the infield. And you encounter other cars going in a different direction. And it helps to have a total disregard for human life.

Saturday was The Herald Bulletin Appreciation Night at the speedway, so the newspaper had a suite there.

At the outset of each race, those in our suite would predict which car would win. My strategy was to pick a car starting near the front that wasn’t too banged up, reasoning that defensive driving is always the best policy.

Here’s what I learned: If you ain’t rubbin’, you ain’t racin’. And unblemished cars — like nice guys — rarely finish first.

Anyway, after getting shut out on my predictions all night long, I picked car No. 9 in the figure 8 feature feature, the last race. The No. 9 car was one of only two with what I dubbed “wings,” clear plastic shield doohickeys sticking straight up from the hind quarter. These impressed me as a technological advantage.

I’m not sure whether it was his wings or his cojones — probably both — but that driver, Nick Warner, was amazing in the figure 8. He hit the turns at breakneck speed and whooshed past the other cars like they were minnows in a salmon run. At least a half-dozen times, Warner came within a tailpipe of smashing into other racers roaring into the infield intersection from another direction.

Text Only
Opinion
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Generally speaking, are people living in previously unincorporated areas of Madison County better off after annexation?

Yes
No
Not sure
     View Results