Saturday, February 13, 2010

"The Weekend Starts on Wednesday" takes the Checkers

NASCAR fans come from all around the country. Fans go to extreme lengths to show their loyalty to their driver(s).

Every race fan has a story, a reason why they tune in on any given Sunday to watch a race, or pay to attend a race.

NASCAR fans stories are one of a kind. They represent the core ideals of this sport and its fans.

Andrew Giangola’s new book, The Weekend Starts on Wednesday, is just a snap shot of NASCAR fans. Their devotion and sometimes borderline obsession with the No. 1 spectator sport in the U.S.

TWSW is a collection of NASCAR fans stories. From the infields of Talladega to victory lane, Giangola spoke with NASCAR fans from all walks of life.

Movie stars, college students, retired veterans, media veterans, and fans from all walks of life. In reading this book, with every story you can relate to some part of it.

For some it may be attending the race with your dad or entire family. Or it could meeting your favorite driver on pit road.

It could be your annual trek to a race with friends that leaves you wanting more. Giangola is able to capture the true essence of a NASCAR fan.

Every story seems to flow into the next leaving you engaged the entire time. There are a lot of NASCAR books out there, some about the technical side of the sport, others about the fans.

I have read many of them, none of them though truly capture NASCAR fans like TWSW.

There is the NASCAR and Jeff Gordon fan that climbed Mt. Everest. Dr. Pat Hickey climbed to the top of the summit and planted a NASCAR flag at the top of the world.

The climb up the summit was for a cause, to promote nursing and to help support the education of nursing students at USC.

Hickey got his NASCAR fix as he climbed when fans from around the world would give him updates on what was going on back at the track.

That was just a preview of Hickey’s story. There are over a dozen more stories like it. These are stories of everyday people and their love for NASCAR.

Giangola’s witty commentary only enhances the visual that the fans are painting.

If you are a NASCAR fan, this is the book for you. I wish we got more in this book. I wish every fan had the chance to tell their story. Giangola just touches on the passion and the devotion fan have for NASCAR.

You can get the book online at the NASCAR.com superstore, Amazon.com, or your local bookstore.

Mike Wright, a diehard Richard Petty fan, I think said it best, “I love the fires and the steaks and the cans of beer and the people. This is my lazy boy chair. I’m home here. When I sit and hear the ‘Gentlemen, start your engines,’ I forget everything. Nothing else matters. I’m a kid again. My heart starts pounding, and I can’t sit still. By the second pace lap, when you can smell the fumes of the gas and the rubber coming off the tires, oh man, it is instant adrenaline. If that smell could go into my alarm clock, I’d always wake up happy.”(p.35)

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