I used to plan my runs to/from Boone to coincide w/the race in N. Wilkeboro. Daytona used to be OK to watch, although the stands were not made for sitting very long (they made a fortune off of selling seat cushions- but the seats were still cold in Feb.), and the far side of the track is all but invisible if there's any haze, and even if clear you need binoculars to see any sort of detail. And depending on where you were at, you couldn't see the pits, either. GOOD Daytona $eat$ were hard to come by- I'm sure there are guys here who know what I'm talking about...
Living in the Orlando area for 40-plus years, I got spoiled- they would open a section of the stands for people to watch practice, no charge. Later they began charging a small amount to get in. A couple empty Coke cans would get you into the Shootout some years. During practice the cars would be still in primer, the only way you knew who it was was by the number or if you knew what the helmet looked like and had binocs.
But compared to a short track race, Daytona was a snoozer- even before there were restrictor plates. There's be runs where the field was basically frozen for an entire fuel/tire run, depending on what rules Nascar burped up for that year. At the track, there's no sensation of speed unless you're dumb enough to get right against the fence, looking down at the roofs of the cars. That would last about 15 seconds until they were firmly told to go take a seat or back away from the fence. The ONLY way I'd sit through another Daytona race was if I had a pit pass.
Better racing could be seen at New Smyrna Speedway during Speed Week (late models and modifieds, etc.) than on the tri-oval IMO. Standing OUTSIDE the fence at NSS, kitty-corner to the third turn, put you closer to the racing than sitting in the grandstands at Daytona! Saw Earnhardt race there (and lose) and didn't even know who he was- then.
Last edited by cobalt327; 03-03-2013 at 03:30 PM.