I'm ba-ack. 12:10 PM My wife asked me if she had to listen to Rusty Wallace today. Sadly, yes. 12:14 PM It's never over till it's over. I know this to be true. But, doesn't it feel like it's over? Sorry, it just does. Feeling like it's over is the last thing Jimmie Johnson wants, because if he treats these last 4 races as a coronation, he'll lose the championship. Unfortunately for his competitors, Jimmie's saying all the right things. 12:17 PM Can somebody explain to me why we have 4 people in the hosting booth with Bestwick, Rusty, Brad and Evernham? Fox does it with 2 guys. Didn't TNT do it with 2 guys? Of the 3 "analysts", and I have to say it that way because Daugherty doesn't know anything, I think Evernham is auditioning for the job in 2009 and Wallace and Daugherty will be gone. I suspect that Rusty knows he's gone and Kenny Wallace reporting that Rusty's looking to drive next year is a trial balloon floated by Rusty to see if there's a car owner out there who would like to hire him next year. If Bill Elliott and Mark Martin can still drive, I can't imagine why Rusty can't. 12:23 PM Is Jeff Gordon retiring? It sure sounds like it. I don't get the point of this piece on Gordon. I think Jeff becoming a father has had more to do with his average season this year than anything else. I don't know what Greg Biffle's been smoking, but I have a hard time thinking that when anybody thinks of Nascar they think of Jeff Gordon. But, I'm not a fan of Gordon's, so I could easily be wrong. The only great driver I can think of that went several years without wins to becoming a winner again was Terry Labonte. He went without a win from 1990 through 1993, only to win several races and a championship from 1994 to 1997. For almost every other great driver, their winless season signals a decline in their skills and almost always happens near the end of their career. Further, I believe that the problem with drivers isn't that they get old. As Indiana Jones put it, "It's not the years, honey, it's the mileage." 12:29 PM Brad Daugherty just wasted 30 seconds of my life blathering on about Earnhardt and Gordon. He speaks, yet nothing comes out of his mouth. My wife and I are very curious about why ABC/ESPN had that piece about Gordon. Any takers to explain it? 1:03 PM Hey, dude, thanks for dressing up to sing the Star Spangled Banner. It looks like they rolled him out of bed 5 minutes ago. And he's going to take forever to sing it. "I'm going to streetttccchh itt out." Glaciers move faster than this guy does. That was over 2 minutes, y'all. Good grief. Allen Bestwick says the drivers are getting final instructions. If I was a crew chief, here's my final instruction to my driver: Go to the front. 1:20 PM I love watching Atlanta. They're so fast. In sim racing, Atlanta's one of my favorite tracks for the same reason. 1:30 PM I know why the teams have different paint schemes all the time, but I have to admit a bit of annoyance at not being able to know who's car it is just by seeing it's colors. Seeing Gordon in a car other than red and blue is just odd. It's like when Earnhardt drove that weird, multi-colored car in the 2000 World 600. It was unnatural. 1:39 PM Junior was 5 tenths faster than Carl Edwards? Wow. R Petty was famous for running the high line. DW once asked him why he did it, and Richard said it was because he wouldn't hit the wall as hard if he hit it. DW asked him, "Yeah, but don't you hit the wall a lot more times?" Ok, that wasn't as funny as when DW told it. Funnier in my head than writing it here. 1:48 PM Talking about Jimmie pulling into his pits so as to block Carl getting out: Daugherty: I don't think Jimmie did it on purpose. Give me a break, Daugherty. 2:04 PM The best part of this race so far? Limited input from Brad Daugherty. 2:13 PM Brad Daugherty was just talking, but all I heard was, "Guys, I can't really say anything because I don't know anything about racing." 2:30 PM So, Carl is basically going to get the first pit exit and we all remember from Larry McReynolds that it's all about the pit stall. It's not about having a great pit crew. I'm just shocked that Carl Edwards didn't get out first since he had the first pit stall. 2:34 PM I would be concerned about fighting Klondor. And watch out for his sister, too. 2:54 PM One thing the Fox guys were right about months ago is how much easier it is to save these cars, probably because of the wing. They've been saving the cars like that today and the entire season. 2:59 PM The CMA awards bring the country together? When did this happen? 3:00 PM Good thing Rusty and Brad, Masters of the Obvious, are here to tell us how Jimmie Johnson got back on the lead lap. Ray Evernham, continuing his audition for the job next year, points out how Kenseth wasn't very good and has gotten better because of the changing track. 3:05 PM Too much grip? I find it hard to believe that having too much grip is a bad thing. 3:16 PM Great job describing the obvious, Brad! 3:22 PM Guys, may I have a word with you please? Look, if you're going to use your phone to look at girls when you're with your wife/girlfriend, at least make sure they're hot. You know? If I'm going to get busted and called a pig, I at least want to make sure the girl is attractive. Julia Roberts in the early 90s, think Pretty Woman, is worth getting called a pig over. The 2 girls in the LG commercial aren't worth it. 3:28 PM 10/26/2008 Great conversation about bump stops and tires between Evernham and Jarrett. Love Evernham easily brushing aside Rusty's desire to bring the bump stops back and pointing out that wider tires are a better idea. Daugherty attempted to say something intelligent, but he's clearly out of his league. I'm repeating my earlier prediction. Rusty and Brad are gone for 2009 and Ray Evernham stays. 4:14 PM It always seemed to me that, when at DEI, if things didn't go well, the #8 team quit. Now, at HMS, Earnhardt and Eury Jr. don't quit. They keep fighting. He's not winning any championship in 2008, but it's things like fighting through tough times now that might payoff next year. 4:33 PM There are times that I wish I didn't have a career in IT. Early this morning at 3am and now are 2 of those times. 4:51 PM Nice restart by Carl. 5:02 PM Jimmie Johnson and Chad Knaus prove yet again who the smartest guys on pit road are. Is it over now? No, but it sure does feel like it, doesn't it?