the news is a little outdated already, in fact i am a couple of weeks late here, but boy oh boy, that lightning stroke: matt kenseth made his return to the cup series as a replacement driver for kyle larson at CGR for the remainder of the 2020 season. that! is!! awesome!!!
i never really mentioned matt’s farewell from the series at the end of the 2018 season here. i didn’t even watch most of his races in the #6 car. the man still is such a hero to me, i couldn’t stand seeing him in a car that just wasn’t capable of winning.
with his return my interest, my excitement and all enthusiasm immediately skyrocketed back up to 100, just like all fell to almost zero in late 2018. it’s a funny thing to look at myself from back then. i was like “i don’t think i’ll ever be interested in the sport again. good times, over now!”. well, no. hehe… fourth wave?
right now, i definitely think NASCAR got me back. i am seriously looking forward to feeling a ton of excitement as long as matt is behind his wheel. and even after that, let’s see who’s gonna replace him as my favourite driver. the most promising candidate for now certainly is william byron. let’s wait how things will turn out… but for now:
it’s a déjà-vu-moment. for the 2007 season, the citroën world rally team replaced my deeply adored xsara with the c4, whose unracy backside reminded me of a dishwasher or something. the entire thing looked like the saxo’s malformed elder brother who wanted to be a minivan – and failed.
for the 2011 season his uglyness made way for the ds3 who immediately won me over. it brought back this adorable female-ish curvyness and the hot booty that was gone and missed after the xsara. those were happy days – but came to an end last weekend. the 2016 dayinsure wales rally gb was the last appearance of the ds3 who’s gonna be supplanted by the spacetourer. kidding. its not really the spacetourer but the c3 that looks like the spacetourer’s malformed younger brother who failed to become a tank. got close though, only the cannon left to grow.
farewell then, beloved ds3 and thank you for all enjoyment! i do hope and pray for another reincarnation in a couple of years…
the picture below was taken by me during the 2014 rallye de france, somewhere in alsace. i was on my way back from the supermarket together with my son. we bought lunch and were caught by surprise by the sudden public appearance of the world rally cars that were on their way from one stage to another. the car was driven by mads østberg and co-driver jonas andersson back then. prisma perfectly underlines its sweet grace…
the question was whether to choose post #17 or #20 for my little matt kenseth tribute. as you can see i went with the #17. matt kenseth in his #17 ford totally represents my second NASCAR wave.
first wave started around late 80s / early 90s i guess. for a very long while i didn’t see any race, i only knew the cars and the fact that they were racing on oval tracks. NASCAR became part of my personal US myth (alongside drag racing, burgers and monster trucks) – and was per se awesome. later on, german sportkanal and eurosport started to broadcast short summaries after the race weekends. i got in touch with driver names and race tracks. my first wave hero was rusty wallace in his miller #2 car (pontiac / ford / dodge).
second wave started early 2000s and was pushed mainly by the availability of internet. when i watched the first full length cup race i was deeply impressed how long they are in fact. i only knew f1 and dtm so far. it soon turned out that this was no comparison at all (not only in terms of race length actually). i still cheered for rusty wallace but soon there was this young roush driver in his #17 dewalt ford coming up, who fascinated me more and more. matt kenseth became the symbol of this new era with full length race enjoyment and american commentators. down to the present day i never watched a race with german live commentary. boogity, boogity, boogity! kenseth won the cup title in 2003 and was my ultimate hero. a couple of years later i lost interest though. the fancyness of the ‘new’ vanished.
third wave started early 2010s when my son developed a shy interest in racing video games. since he struggled a little with the controls (small hands, big controller) and the track layouts of laguna seca, bathurst, spa and so on (what is a turn and why do i have to break?) i remembered these rather beginner friendly fenced ovals, where walls and safer barriers keep staggering race cars on track if necessary. matt kenseth was still driving the #17 car as i found out with immediately emerging excitement. third wave still persists and my NASCAR cheering reached its next higher level: sim racing, live races with raceview usage and cute contact to NASCAR dudes from all over the planet. for the 2013 season matt kenseth left roush racing and moved on to joe gibbs racing – currently driving the #20 dollar general toyota camry. he is still competitive, sovereign, consistent and awesome. but despite everything he’ll always be associated with his #17 car i guess. thats why i picked this blog post.
(picture taken from: http://www.modelroundup.com/)
at some time in my late 10s or early 20s i officially named my penis after my favourite racecar driver. well, back in the days it was not colin mcrae (any more). for the record: best introduction ever. anyways, colin mcrae certainly was the initial spark for my interest in rallye and the WRC that persists to the present day – even though in a lowered intensity. today would have been his 48th birthday if he hadn’t died in a helicopter crash mid september 2007.
he brought me to rallye, as i said – and in addition to that he brought me to rallye video games as well. “colin mcrae rally” was most likely the first ever rallye videogame i played. beloved ps1 days. i am still proud owner of all 5 games of the pre dirt series and still playing. they are definitely part of my simracing nostalgia, not big business any more though – but as these games are very beginner friendly, they are great fun for 8 year old junior simracers.
what else to say? “if in doubt, flat out!” of course. rest in peace, hero.