Thursday, September 18, 2008

Bowyer's banana split

It was obvious NASCAR made it to the big time when Jeff Gordon on several occasions co-hosted the popular morning show, Live with Regis and Kelly, earlier this century. But what does it say about the sport when the drivers are seen on that same show having an ice cream battle? Before heading for my late-shift on Wednesday, I turned on the tube and saw the top six drivers sitting on stools and being interviewed by Reg and Kelly. These weren’t your typical racing questions, of course, but the hosts wanted to know why Dale Earnhardt Jr. is so popular. Kyle Busch quickly quipped, “The ladies love him.”

If seeing NASCAR’s six best drivers squirming in suits while sitting on high stools wasn’t bizarre enough, they turned the segment into a game show. After the commercial break, workers covered the set with a tarp, set up large ice cream buckets and fitted the host and their guests scoopers and cones. One driver tossed a ball of ice cream to his teammate, who was supposed to catch it in the cone while several feet away. Pretty stupid and pretty boring. Busch seemed to have the best touch, though, and caught three.

But the most entertaining part came a few seconds after the buzzer rang and the competition ended. The drivers gave a few fake chuckles as they looked over to the official timer. That’s when a large ball of Vanilla came whipping by and narrowly missed Clint Bowyer’s crotch. Carl Edwards, known for his workout routines and chiseled physique, had some serious power behind that flying frozen dairy. Sure, it was a clever prank, but a few inches to the left and Edwards may have turned Bowyer into a true banana split.

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