Raphael's Points: Where's Parker, Jeff Gordon, Batman, and a skiing squirrel! | Sports & Recreation
CONCORD - He's our own hero on a half shell, we call him Adrian Parker. He lit up the scoreboard during his high school football days at South Rowan, then dazzled NASCAR's top drivers with his mad PR and Ninja skills, now he's the Communications Director at Charlotte Motor Speedway and the legendary figure behind PARKER'S POINTS!
DW: Okay, Race #1 in the Chase is now in the books. Would you call that a statement performance for Brad Keselowski and Penske?
AP: The short answer is yes. But, Keselowski has been the most consistent performer over the past three months.
Consider this, in the past 11 races, dating back to his win at Kentucky, Keselowski has racked up 10 top-10 finishes, seven top-five’s and two victories. That’s ridiculous good and if he keeps that up, the Blue Deuce is going to be hard to beat in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
Shameless Charlotte Motor Speedway plug: Keselowski will race in a couple of weeks on the world’s largest HDTV at CMS against one lucky fan in the soon-to-be-released NASCAR The Game: Inside Line. It was Keselowski’s idea as he wanted an excuse to play video games on the 16,000 square-foot HDTV.
DW: Besides Brad K, who else had the best day when it comes to the Chase, and, calling on Dr. Obvious, who had the worst luck and now has the biggest hill to climb?
AP: Who had the worst luck is easy—Jeff Gordon. The team that could do no wrong over the final three-race stretch to the Chase (finished third, second, second) was immediately hit with bad luck when Gordon’s throttle stuck going into Turn 1. The No. 24 car slammed hard into the wall and the result was a 35th-place finish.
That has Gordon staring up at the rest of the Chase drivers, but to look on the bright side, if that would’ve happened at any time during the past three races, we wouldn’t be discussing this incident because he would’ve failed to make the Chase.
Shameless Charlotte Motor Speedway plug: Gordon was at CMS this morning to kick off the Food Lion AutoFair with an unveiling of the special paint scheme he’ll run at the Bank of America 500 on Oct. 13. The No. 24 Chevy will carry paint to celebrate the return of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to Nickelodeon. Gordon’s car will carry Leonardo on the hood, which is fitting considering Gordon’s son Leo was on hand to help with the unveiling.
The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will be at Charlotte Motor Speedway during Bank of America 500 weekend, making appearance in the kids zones and other areas during Friday and Saturday of the event. Nickelodeon’s Victoria Justice will also be on hand to perform a prerace concert. For more details, go to www.charlottemotorspeedway.com.
DW: Okay, back to New Hampshire for this week's Sylvania 300. Which team is likely to "light up" this event?
AP: OK funny man, shining bright this weekend will be Jimmie Johnson who has recorded eight top-10 finishes in the past 10 race at New Hampshire. Joining him in the spotlight will be fellow Chevy drivers Gordon and Tony Stewart, along with Michael Waltrip Racing’s Clint Bowyer.
Looking to catch lightning in a bottle? Go with Bowyer’s teammate Martin Truex, Jr.
But, since I’m supposed to be the brightest on this particular web page, I’m going to go with Denny Hamlin. He dominated at New Hampshire earlier this season and got bit by pit strategy when taking four tires buried him in the field. That won’t happen this time and Hamlin will score the victory in the Granite State.
Shameless Charlotte Motor Speedway plug: Stewart was at CMS earlier this week helping us announced the Big n Rich prerace concert and roll out a new charitable platform from Bank of America, who will have a giant display at the speedway during the race weekend and will donate $1 to the Wounded Warrior Project for each fan who comes an signs the flag mosaic. To find other ways to contribute go to http://bit.ly/R3vxNi.
DW: Now I hope you know how much you are appreciated Adrian. You take the time to give us Parker's Points, while also handling the O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals last week, and the Food Lion Auto Fair this week. How do you do it? And we heard something about a story involving Adam "Batman" West and you? Can you elaborate?
And while we're at it, are you really serving bat wings?
AP: I do it by simply taking credit for other’s work! We have a great staff at CMS and it’s fun to be a part of the team.
The NHRA event at zMAX Dragway was a smashing success and congrats to all of the first-time winners, including Mooresville’s Jason Line, the reigning NHRA Pro Stock champ, who after years of coming very close, finally got his first win at the Bellagio of drag strips.
On to the Food Lion AutoFair, where the world’s largest automotive extravaganza features a terrific weather forecast; a giant collection of Carroll Shelby cars through the years in celebration of the life of one of America’s greatest automotive icons; a display of the evolution of the Batmobile, including a 1966 replica from the hit TV series; we’ve got bat wings (which is actually just BBQ chicken w/ black food coloring) and Joker Juice (don’t ask, just try it); and my favorite, Twiggy the water skiing squirrel, as seen on wbtv.com http://bit.ly/UuNqWK.
Adult tickets are $10 and kids 13 and under get in free. Open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. Now THAT’s a shameless Charlotte Motor Speedway plug!
DW: Hey fans, notice how Adrian completely skirted the question about Adam West? Holy Avoidance! Want that question answered? Don't miss next week's exciting episode...same BAT TIME, same BAT CHANNEL!