For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday’s race.

I began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 12:42 PM, and stopped at the waving of the final caution flag at 4:39 PM (all times are EDT). I did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage.

Fox was the broadcast team for this event.

Please note that in addition to the commercials and promos listed below there is always a sponsor’s logo that changes throughout the race near the race ticker.

Throughout the breakdown, you can find links to sponsors, or special items-of-interest such as links to contests and movie sites.

Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2016 Geico 500

Total number of commercials: 138

Total number of companies or entities advertised: 61

Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 119
Total number of companies or entities advertised: 56
Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 19
Total number of companies or entities advertised: 11
Number of times Fox utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 4

Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast (including company logos ‘floating’ in corners of the screen): 81

Total number of companies or entities advertised in brief promos or crawlers: 28 (companies: McDonald’s; KFC; Coca-Cola; Coors Light; Busch Beer; Bud Light; Chevy; Chevy Silverado; Ford Performance; Toyota; TRD; Can-Am; GoodYear; Sunoco; Geico; Nationwide; Advance Auto Parts;; @MissSprintCup ; Credit One Bank; ; Cialis; ‘Capt. America – Civil War’ movie; ‘American Country Countdown Awards’ on Fox; Baseball on Fox/FS1; ‘Garbage Time’ on FS1; Fox deportes; and NAMI ; ; ; upcoming Xfinity race; upcoming Sprint Cup race)

Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 3 min. 40 sec.

Also, there are the following race statistics/graphics during the broadcast, sponsored by companies:

NASCAR on Fox ‘Hollywood Hotel’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Booth’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Weather’
Geico ‘Starting Grid’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Dale Earnhardt Jr. – Restrictor Plate Career’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Pit Road Reports’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Joey Logano – 2015 Talladega Winner’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Kurt Busch – Best Talladega Finishes 4th 4 Times’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Kevin Harvick – 2010 Talladega Winner’
Geico ‘Race Analysis’
Ford Performance ‘Track Facts’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Leaders/Behind’
Busch Light ‘In-Car Camera’
Fresh from Florida ‘In-Car Camera’
Geico ‘In-Car Camera’
Ford Performance ‘In-Car Camera’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Team Communications’
NASCAR on Fox ‘HMS Running Order’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Chase Elliott – 2015 Xfinity Series Champion’
Coca-Cola ‘In-Car Camera’
NASCAR on Fox ‘JGR Running Order’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Leaders’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Biggest Movers’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Starts/Wins/Top 5s’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Reporting:’
Nationwide ’88 Performance Report’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Position’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Dropping Back’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Brad Keselowski – 3 Time Talladega Winner’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Commentators’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Replay’
Nationwide ‘In-Car Camera’
Sprint ‘Denny Hamlin – 2016 Daytona 500 Winner’
NASCAR on Fox ‘On Pit Road’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Currently/Started’
Advance Auto Parts ‘Green Flag Times – Pit Performance’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Involved in Wreck’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Michael Waltrip – 2003 Talladega Winner’
Advance Auto Parts ‘Race Off Pit Road’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Kasey Kahne – Involved in Wreck’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Tony Stewart – 53 Laps Run Today’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Ty Dillon – 1 Career Xfinity Win’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Crank it Up’
Sprint ‘Most Laps Led’
Nationwide ’88 Performance Update’
GoodYear ‘Aerial Coverage’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Currently/High/Low’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Top 5 – Last Pit Stop’
Busch ‘Race Summary’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Mid-Race Report’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Talladega Mid-Race Leader Failed to Win Last 38 of 41 Races’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Currently’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Leaders/Lead Changes’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Michael Annett – Best Career Finish 13th 2015 Daytona 500’
Coca-Cola ‘Racing Family Update’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Chase Elliott – Led 27 of 106 Laps’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Kurt Busch – Restrictor Plate Career’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Starts/Top 5s/Finishes’
Nationwide ’88 Inside Ride’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Trevor Bayne – 2011 Daytona 500 Winner’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Trevor Bayne – 6 Top 10 Finishes’
Sprint ‘Lead Changes’
Ford ‘Cutaway Car’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Carl Edwards – Wrecked Lap 96’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Kasey Kahne – 2 Wrecks Today’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Starts/Top 5s/Best Finish’
NASCAR on Fox ‘David Ragan – 2 Career Wins’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Under Caution’
Toyota ‘Top Performers’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Chase Grid After 9 of 36 Races’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Michael McDowell – Best Career Finish 7th at ’14 D500’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Trevor Bayne – 22 Laps Led’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Last 10 Spring Talladega Races Avg. Lap of Last Caution – 6 to Go’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Danica Patrick – Led 3 Laps Today’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Talladega Radio Remix’
Credit One Bank ‘One to Go’
NASCAR on Fox ‘Final Lap’

Start time to record race/commercial periods: 12:42 PM
End time to record race/commercial periods: 4:39 PM

Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 237
Minutes of race broadcast: 186
Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 51
Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 9

Number of missed restarts: 0
Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 1 One Caution Was Extended Due to Debris; Mentioned but Not Shown

Click here for last year’s commercial breakdown of this race.

Read more Commercial breakdown and links related to the 2016 Geico 500 ...

Anyone who has been following racing for any length of time remembers the informative and fun racing news show on ESPN called ‘RPM2nite’. This is how many race fans became familiar with the friendly and knowledgeable John Kernan, the host of the program.

Kernan’s love of racing began as a young man racing in moto-cross, then veered off into broadcasting as a pit reporter. He has accumulated a lot of fans with his unique style of reporting, and all of them would love to see him return to a nightly show like ‘RPM2nite’.

I enjoyed asking John Kernan these questions and hearing his replies, and I am sure the readers will, too.

I understand you grew up in Irondale, MO. Is it famous for anything?

I don’t think it’s famous for anything. Only 300 or so people live there. It’s very, very small.

Who lived in your house when you were growing up? Who did you get along with the best?

My two older brothers and, of course, my Mom and Dad. Both of my brothers were at least five years older than me, so we didn’t hang out together.

Did you have a favorite toy or hobby when you were little?

I loved anything to do with airplanes and speed. One of my favorite toys was a little electric plane that you flew around in circles. I also had a mini-bike and would build jumps to get major air. I had a Go-Kart too, but it didn’t work too well running around the field next to my house, it was made for pavement and there really wasn’t anywhere for me to run it, so we sold it.

What did you like to wear to school when you were in high school? This wasn’t when you started liking colorful ties was it?

I pretty much stuck to blue jeans and flannel shirts, although in high school I did sport a leisure suit or two.

Did the girls think you were a hottie?

NO! I had big thick black plastic glasses and long Elvis type sideburns. I was never accused of being a hottie.

Did you have a car when you were in high school, and if you did what was it?

My first car was a ‘69 Ford Torino. I blew up the engine in it while trying to find more speed for a drag race. It threw one of the rods right through the crank case. So, a friend and I went to the junk yard and bought another old engine and put it into the car and amazingly, with no directions, got it to run again.

What turned you on to racing? Did you have family members or friends who enjoyed it?

My Dad took me to the local dirt track a few times when I was very young. You could sit outside the house at night and hear the cars on Friday nights. Then I started racing moto-cross when I was in high school.

I understand your first job as a pit reporter was at North Wilkesboro Speedway. There are a lot of fans who would like to see that track raced on again. Do you agree?

I loved the North Wilkesboro Speedway! I would love to see some kind of racing there again.

What is your favorite track to watch a race at?

Believe it or not, I’ve never watched a NASCAR race from the grandstand, I’ve seen them from either pit road or on top of the press box. I think I’ll always hold a special spot in my heart for Martinsville because that’s where I saw my first cup race way back in 1983.

Read more Fishing for answers from John Kernan ...

I am a NASCAR trading card fanatic, and once I pulled a Kenny Wallace 2003 Wheels American Thunder Cool Threads Race-Used Fire Retardant Shirt card. For people who do not collect these kinds of cards, a small piece of the shirt (or sometimes a piece of sheet metal, lug nut, race flag, ball cap, or other racing item) is embedded in the card, making it a real collector item. I was really happy to get something that a favorite driver of mine once wore inside of a trading card that I could save in a binder. In the year 2004, during the month of May, the last Busch race at Nazareth Speedway was held. Even though it really was not summer yet, the day was very hot and humid. I got to spend a few minutes with Kenny Wallace, who was dressed in his firesuit and ready to race. He was very nice to all of the fans who surrounded him. When he spoke to me he gave me lots of eye contact and made me laugh. Even though his firesuit was wet with sweat, he did not seem to be bothered by the heat. It made me think about the trading card I had at home with a piece of his shirt in it, and I knew I would always think about that moment when I looked at the card. Since 2004 Kenny Wallace has become a busier driver and racing announcer than ever. This year he has a full-time Busch ride, a part-time Busch ride, and also races on the dirt with his own car and team. NASCAR fans love his racing announcing and interviews, and he will also be having a talk show broadcasted from his home state of Missouri once a week. He is going to be very busy. I was very lucky to be able to ask Kenny Wallace the following questions. I am glad that he was able to spend some time with me. _JAW: When you were in high school what posters did you have on your bedroom walls?_ Kenny: A poster of Farrah Fawcett in a bikini and an Easy Rider poster of Peter Fonda on a Motorcycle. _JAW: Did you have a good high school friend that you wish you could see again?_ Kenny: Yes, he is dead. He took the wrong road in life.

Read more Rapid replies by a popular NASCAR personality: Kenny Wallace ...

_Recently I was able to spend some time with a man who has been involved in the world of racing in many ways. Erik Arneson, Director of Media Relations at SPEED, has done everything from motorsports reporting to authoring books about famous drag racers. I learned a lot from talking with him, and I am sure that anyone reading his replies from this interview will find them as interesting as I did._ !! _JAW: I understand you were born in Takoma Park, MD. Is this area famous for anything? Now that you are living in NC, do you cheer for the Ravens or the Panthers, or another team; or aren't you into football?_ Erik: Although the hospital was in Takoma Park, near Washington DC, I grew up on the Severn River near Annapolis, Md an area rich in history, great seafood and beautiful waterways. In fact, as a kid, I thought more about my first boat than my first car. When it comes to football, believe it or not, I am a lifelong Miami Dolphins fan. My father took me to a Baltimore Colts game in 1972 and they were playing the Dolphins. Miami had a great team that year started collecting their football cards and have been a fan ever since. I do, however, cheer for the Panthers and my son, Jaret, is a huge Jake Delhomme fan.

Read more Constant Motion and Constantly Motivated: Erik Arneson, Director of Media Relations at SPEED ...

I recently had the opportunity to talk with Dave Despain, host of the SPEED Channel’s shows ‘Wind Tunnel’ and ‘Inside Nextel Cup’.

I was honored to be able to speak to someone so well known in the racing world, who knows so much about so many kinds of racing.

It was a very nice conversation with an interesting man, and I am happy to share his answers with you.

JAW: I understand that you grew up in Iowa. Did you enjoy living there, or did you wish you lived somewhere else, like near a beach?

Dave: I thought it was OK at the time. When I grew up I found out there are lots of exciting place in the world, but I am proud of being from Iowa.

JAW: Who lived at home with you when you were growing up?

Dave: My parents, two sisters, and grandfather lived there.

JAW: Did you do stuff with your Dad when you were a kid?

Dave: My Dad and Mother both worked a lot, so they weren’t home a lot of the time.

JAW: What was your Mother like with you when she was mad at you?

Dave: She would speak firmly to me, and make clear that what I was doing wasn’t right.

JAW: What kind of food did your Mom make for you that you hated?

Dave: Pork chops. The rest of the family thought of them as a treat, but I didn’t think so.

JAW: When you eat dinner now, what beverage do you usually drink with it?

Dave: A Margarita, or wine. It depends on what is for dinner.

Read more Talking broken bones, forgetful guests, and pot bellied pigs with Dave Despain ...

When I first started watching racing I thought that it would be tough to get a friend in NASCAR.

But that wasn’t true once I met Sue Scott. She puts a racing newsletter on the internet called, “Sue’s Racin’ News ‘n Views”. It is filled up with NASCAR news and links.

When I was feeling down and ready to quit, Sue was nice to me in a way I can’t explain.

She got me a personal contact with Jerry Nadeau. He sent me an autographed birthday greeting that is framed, and on our NASCAR wall in our family room.

She also is a great reporter, and she battles a disease every day.

She lists her views and shares her comedy which must be read at her internet site 10,000 people read it. Actually if you to Sue’s site you will be making her happy enough to keep her alive longer.

She definitely deserves it. She should not have to worry at all. If you show her you are interested in what she does it will mean a lot and that means a lot to me.

She needs some money to help her keep her newsletter going. I would like anyone reading my interview to pledge $1 to her. She says that’s OK, and people can pay the dollar if they think her newsletter is worth it.

She is one of the dearest people I know. Her sense of humor is so good.

But remember she is very sick, so pray for her. I know I do.

Thanks, Sue, for taking your time to do this. I hope you enjoy this.

Joshua Walker


Are you a great bidder since you were born in Bidderford, Maine?

HeHeHe! No, I am proud to say I am an official Maniac (MAINEiac)!

I know you only lived there till you were four, but do you remember if you froze while living there? My Aunt Peggy lived in S. Portland for a while, and she said they sell snowshoes in the stores.

I lived in Portland and I remember very well opening the front door and the snow was higher than I stood! We spent many days tobogganing as a family.

After Maine, you lived and grew up in River Vale, New Jersey. Is New Jersey as bad as people say that it is?

NO! Sure if you drive down the NJ Turnpike it doesn’t look all that great but it is a great state to live and grow up in. I lived in the Northern part right next to NY State and close to NY City. You could see the NY Skyline from the top of our hill. We spent days up in the Mountains (Harriman) we would bike ride to Bear Mountain and a lot of our summer days were spent on the Jersey Shore. Bruce Springteen, Southside Johnny and the Chatterbox at Seaside Heights carry some of my fondest memories. My brother and I enjoyed a Norman Rockwell type life!

Is River Vale a giant veil with a river on it? Seriously, do you know why it was named that?

I honestly do not know where the name came from. I do know all the streets in my development were of Irish decent. I lived on the corner of Wicklow Way and Cobh Road.

I would like to ask you something about being adopted. Do you think you love your parents as much as a child who was not adopted?

YES! Sometimes I think it is even more of a LOVE. Because an adopted child is a “Chosen Child”. I grew up with these words on my bedroom wall:

Adoption Creed
Not Flesh of my Flesh
Not Bone of my Bone
Miraculously my own…
Never forget
For a single minute
You didn’t grow under my heart…
You grew IN it.

Now I am blessed to have Megan, she was adopted at birth and those same beautiful words now hang in her room J!

Do you think you had a good childhood?

It couldn’t have been better! My only regret is I wasn’t a better kid. I was rebellious and very troublesome, but my parents NEVER gave up on me!

Did your parents make you eat vegetables you didn’t like? What were they? Do you still not like them?

Yes, those meanies! Now I love most all veggies, I am not big on Okra and I can’t eat spinach!

How did you do in school as a child? Did you like it?

I did “okay”, but as I said I was very rebellious. My main concern was fun not grades. Looking back it really gets me mad at myself. I know I could have been a great Dr. but I did not know that when I was younger. I loved school, I had a lot of friends and we had to much fun. I wish I had less fun and better grades.

Were you ever bullied? Were the kids ever mean?

Sadly, I was one of the bullies. I did something’s I regret deeply.

You have told me that you attended a lot of sports events with your Dad, like baseball, football, and racing. When you were a teenager, did it embarrass you to do stuff with your Dad?

Oh not at all! I was so proud of my Dad. He was and always will be my biggest hero. At times Dad would let a friend or 2 tag along with us, but my fondest memories were just Dad and I. I remember coming back from Shea Stadium and our car overheated ON The George Washington Bridge. I was so scared but Dad handled it and we were soon on our way home. He was a great, great man. I miss him terribly.

Read more If you want to meet an angel here is your chance--Sue Scott of Sue's Racin' News 'n Views ...

A Kempner and Pam Miller.jpg

Artie Kempner, Coordinating Director of NASCAR on Fox, and Pam Miller, Pit Producer

When we all turn on the television and turn up the volume, we notice that the Fox NASCAR broadcasts are terrific productions.

The whole broadcast is at the standards that we want.

This incredible sport is being enhanced by many great people, obviously!

The wrecks are shown just the way we want. The commercials are being cut short. The shots of the racing are really good.

We think, “Who could be behind this amazing work of achievement and pleasure?”

There are a lot of amazing people, and I’ve become quite a good friend of one of them, Artie Kempner. Artie is the Coordinating Director of NASCAR on Fox, and directs all the Nextel Cup Broadcasts, as well as many of the Busch races.

If you really believe that he would have some good things to say due to the amazing Fox broadcasts, then you should read this interview. I put Artie on the hot seat by asking some very interesting questions, some personal, some professional. I think you’ll enjoy my interview with him.

His answers are as inspiring as the great coverage you watch every week, directed personally by him with the help of his great Fox team.

His answers really let you know a lot about what goes on behind the scenes at a NASCAR race. This is an inspiring interview by a good personality in the world of NASCAR, Artie Kempner.


You have told me that you grew up in Merric, New York. Is it famous for something?

Merrick’s most famous person would probably be Debbie Gibson. She was a pop teenage singer in the 1980s. Merrick would be infamous as the home of Amy
Fischer, the teenager who was involved with Joey Buttafucco in a terrible tabloid cheating/shooting affair. I don’t personally know Debbie or Amy, though.
I think my Mom knew Amy’s mother.

What did your Dad do for a living?

My Dad was an insurance agent. He retired a couple of years ago, and he and my Mom live in Lake Worth, Florida and play a lot of golf and cards—plus
they watch NASCAR races now!!

Was your house you grew up in ritzy?

I grew up middle class in a nice home, but it was not ritzy. My brother and I shared a room (he is two years younger) until we were both teenagers.

What color was your room?

My room was mostly blue (my favorite color), but I had all kinds of posters, team pennants and other sports stuff all over it.

How was playing sports as a kid?

I lived to play sports as a kid. Our neighborhood had a lot of kids around the same age and we played football, basketball, street hockey, roller hockey,
baseball and even golf. I also played ice hockey a lot.

Did you have brothers that played sports with you?

My brother bobby and I played a lot together, mostly golf and hockey. He was usually the goalie. I think I sent him to the emergency room four times for
stitches by hitting him in the mask with a shot. My Mom learned to handle blood pretty well!!

You mentioned you played lacrosse. Is it as dangerous as they say it is?

Lacrosse is a terrific game. Yes it is played with sticks, but no, it is not dangerous. It can be physical because they allow checking, but it is a lot
of fun. The sport is very big on Long Island, where Merrick is located.

What was your favorite subject in school?

I loved history, and still do. And also simple math, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division.

Your least favorite?

Hard math like calculus. I took it in high school and college and still haven’t figured it out. I should probably ask Matt Borland and Ryan Newman for
some pointers. As engineers they would really understand it!

You said that as a family you attended some races when you were young. Where is Freeport Speedway?

Freeport is the next town over from Merrick. It was a 1/4 mile dirt track I think, and they raced modifieds and did some demolition derbys as well.

Is it still there?

They tore it down when I was in jr. high and built some stores.

How long did it take for you to learn how to drive?

It didn’t take me long to drive, but I must admit I failed my first road test!!

What was your first car?

1969 cutlass supreme with a 455 hp engine. It had been my Mom’s and when she got a new car I lucked into getting it. Only problem was that it only had a
two barrel carb, so it didn’t have the speed that a teenager really wants (thank goodness for that!!)

Did you do any of those rebellious bad things in college in the 70s?

If you call shaving your head with your teammates rebellious, then that would be about it. I enjoyed life in college, but never did any drugs, never ever
smoked (sorry RJ Reynolds), and didn’t drink too much, too often. One thing I am proud to say is that I have never driven after drinking!!

Read more Why Fox Rocks! An Interview with Artie Kempner by JAW ...

When you think of the name ‘Nikki’, you think ‘pop star’.

Nikki Krone always dreamed of being a pop star as a child. Maybe if she really were, she could arrange it so I could meet Hilary Duff.

Seriously, Nikki is a person that if you met her you would know that she is a serious NASCAR fan. One who writes articles about it and has interviewed famous NASCAR WC, Busch, CTS, ASA drivers; as well as two Speed Channel personalities (Bob Dillner and Rick Allen).

She is funny. I learned how funny she really is by reading her answers.

Nikki loves her niece, a nephew who hasn’t been born yet, and she especially loves her husband.

She is a great person to read about and she lives an interesting life. See if you think so, too.

Joshua Walker


The name “Nikki” sounds like a pop superstar. Would you qualify for that?

Funny you should say that. Growing up my dream was to become a “Pop Star”. Funny how reality kicks you in the rear when you get older!

Besides racing, what are some of your other hobbies?

Is there life outside of racing? I enjoy doing scrapbooking, but I usually scrapbook my racing pictures, so I guess that doesn’t count outside of racing… My biggest hobby would be traveling to Lincoln, NE (my hometown) and spending time with my family and friends. Of course, that includes spoiling my 16-month-old niece Addison (almost 17), and preparing to spoil my nephew Gavin when he is born in November.

Were any of your family members into sports, or interesting hobbies?

My mom, brother and Grandma are huge football fans. My brother played football in the midget league, Junior High, High School, one year in college and then for a semi-pro league in Lincoln a couple of years ago.

Have you ever had, or do you want to own a pet of some kind?

I had fish, a hamster, a cat and a dog, all deceased. I would LOVE to get a Bulldog—I think they are the sweetest—but they are a little too pricey for me right now. Plus, I think they are too big for the apartment.

Do you like cats or dogs better?

20 years ago, I would have said cats. But after owning one of each, as much as I love cats, I would have to go with dogs.

My favorite color is Bobby Labonte green. What is your favorite color?

Michael Waltrip Blue!

Read more A Shooting Star in the universe--Nikki Krone ...

After interviewing the people from NASCAR that I have, I thought I could interview Ren, because he seems interesting (he also really wanted me too. And he was sort of like a boss at one time, because CawsnJaws was born at the old Frontstretch message board, where he was a webmaster).

I thought up some good questions, which I had been pondering over for a few weeks.

In the preliminary information he sent me, he indicated that he was a Thai Linguist in the Air Force. He had some interesting things to say.

I also asked questions from the personal side, to racing. I got great answers. Ren did a wonderful job. He made his answers really funny and I enjoyed that very much. I had a lot of fun interviewing him.

If you’re looking for a lot of fun, and want to learn about a great person familiar with racing, then you will want to read about Ren Jonsin.


My Dad was in the Air Force. What made you pick the Air Force?

I decided to go into the Air Force because it had higher standards. Plus I thought the Navy uniforms were too effeminate, the Army would take convicted murderers almost, and the Marines, well those guys are too hard core for me. I mean, they act like it’s the military or something. Since I already had experience in the Boy Scouts, I knew that I could handle Air Force basic training, so I went with the Air Force. Aim high!

A ‘Thai Linguist’? Is that the person I’d need to help me understand what the two ties I bought at the department store are saying in the bag on the way home?

No, that’s a common misconception, but actually, it’s the freak you see in the corner of the tie department licking the ties when he thinks no one is looking.

Seriously, what motivated you to learn Thai, and who taught you?

I had an aptitude for foreign languages at the time, they just came easy to me. The reason I took Thai is because they said it DEFINATELY would be Airborne. Josh, if you ever go in the service, remember this. The word ‘definitely’ is recruiter-speak for “everything I say from here on out is a lie.” Anyway, I was stationed at Fort Meade, MD the entire time I was in the service, other than my training. Got to fly a really nice big gray desk though. I was trained at the Presidio of Monterey in Monterey, CA. We were taught by Thai nationals, one of whom barely spoke English when we started. I was there for about a year. Tough duty, but someone has to do it.

It says you did this for four years in the Air Force. How busy could a Thai Linguist be?

There were only four of them in the Air Force at the time, so we were fairly busy. Mostly translated newspapers and magazines though.

How has this skill helped you in your current life?

I actually know what I’m eating in a Thai restaurant and before I was married it impressed the heck out of dates. I also was trained in code breaking which helped me solve the cryptograms when we weren’t busy and had a lot of analyst training so that way when I got married, I knew how to not give the wife too much information even in separate stories.

Please count to ten in Thai for me.

Thai is written in Sanskrit and uses inflection as part of the language, for instance, the Thai word ‘Ma’ can mean both Mother or cow depending on how you say it. The point is that unless you hear it, it may not be correct when you say it. Anyway —

1 – Nyng

2 – song

3 – sii

4 – sam

5 – ha

6 – hoge

7 – ched

8 – ped

9 – kaw

10 – sib

If you want to see them and hear them check out this link

So you say you were a drag racer. What did you do the moment after you said to yourself, “I wanna be a drag racer”?

Punched the gas. Back when I was young, we used to race on the street a lot so it wasn’t like I started out racing at a drag strip. You could make a lot more money by racing on the street than at the track so I did a lot of that. The good thing about racing on the track though is that I could run my car in pro street and the truck I towed it to the track on in stock. They run bracket races where you let them know how fast your car will go and the slower car gets a head start. The first car to cross the finish line, without going faster than they said they would and without leaving the starting line too soon wins the race. By doing it this way, you could beat a Corvette with a Cavalier so everyone had a good chance at winning if they had a consistent car and knew how to leave the starting line right.

How did you enjoy it?

Loved it. Like I said, you can run your daily driver, so anyone can get into it and it’s loads of fun. The only thing I liked better was autocross which is like a drag race with corners.

How long did you do it?

On the track, about 10 years. On the street, I still enjoy beating annoying little Civic drivers who think that a huge spoiler makes the car go faster. Only up to 55 though. Well, usually.

What was your car number and color?

I didn’t go to the track every week so I never got an NHRA number; I used a temporary number whenever I went. I ran a few different cars over the years. I started with a ’65 Chevy II (Nova) that started with a 6 cylinder but ended up with a 454 engine. I ran a 70 GTO for fun when I was in the service. That one was just stock with a 400 ci engine. I’ve had a Vega that had a 400ci Chevy engine shoved in it. I’ve also raced an 1980 Ford Fiesta, an ’86 Chrysler Laser and my Mother’s ’85 Cutlass Supreme when I took some friends to the track, but wasn’t planning on racing. Slow as the dickens, but like I said, that doesn’t matter in bracket racing.

You say that you got into stockcar racing by playing video games. That is a neat way to get into NASCAR. In my opinion, the best NASCAR game is ‘NASCAR ‘98’ because you can lap cars. Do you still play?

No, I haven’t played for quite awhile. I can kill a day easy with that game. Recently I’m playing Civilization III. I name the cities after tracks, when I run out of tracks I go to drivers. Like Pettyville, Skinner Town. Labonteoplis and Gordon Fransisco.

Read more A Big Wig--Ren Jonsin ...

Do you want to meet a girl that’s as sweet as Colorado wild flowers?

When you’re at a racing message board learning about NASCAR it is nice to know someone who can be resourceful and kind to you. ‘Colorado NASCAR Fan’ is like that. She is always getting the important information that we need before anyone else.

She also has a great sense of humor.

After getting to know her you find that she is one of the nicest ladies in the world. She is good at posting good information fast and neatly.

Her personality is so great that she makes other people jealous (like CAW).

She is also excellent at games that we make up like our racing pick’ems. She’s also good at our NASCAR Scrambles (please check them out on the message board to see how she does). She has already won the 10’s game for the first half of the NASCAR season, and is leading the 8’s!

Lots of times she is one of the first ones to reply at our posts here.

When it comes down to it she is one of the best ‘internet people’ you could meet.

So if you want to learn about her then read her interview below.

Thanks for your patience in getting this, CNF.

Thanks again

Joshua Walker

What is life like in Colorado?

Colorado is a fun place to live. We’ve got the mountains and a lot of outdoor activities available to us. We’ve also got great football and hockey teams, Pikes Peak International Raceway and the largest 4th of July Rodeo in the country.

Ft. Collins? Where might I discover it?

Fort Collins is located about 45 miles south of the Wyoming/Colorado border west of I-25. We are a city of about 100,000 plus 25,000 college kids during the school year. Fort Collins is home to Colorado State University, which houses one of the top vet schools and vet hospitals in the country. We also have Horsetooth Reservoir, the Poudre River and Poudre Canyon, and are about 45 minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park. It has been named one of the best places to retire. The culture is very diverse with the University here.

Do you have to be in the military to live there?

Not any more. It was originally found as a military fort in 1864 and incorporated into a town in 1873. Here’s a link to the history of Fort Collins:

You have told me that your husband, Sheldn, works at a machine shop. My Dad does, too. What does Sheldn do? My Dad says that he pushes papers.

Sheldn actually runs a machine. He’s been there for 6 ½ years now. He just recently transferred to a new department so he is learning some new stuff.

Your Dad, Walt, works at that same machine shop. My Dad, Geary, works at a machine shop, and his name is spelled weird, too. And my Pap’s name is Walt. What do you think all that means?

I think it means we’ve got great families that are hard working!

I also understand your mother, Debbie, works at the same school district as you do. Do you think it’s a little crowded with all these family members working together?

Actually, it’s not. My mom and I work in different buildings so we don’t see each other every day. We talk every day usually, but try to avoid talking work – even though we usually ended up talking about something that is going on with the district.

What do you do at the school? CAW says that you are good with numbers. Do you work with numbers at the school? Do they grade you?

I don’t actually work in a school. I work for the Research & Development Center for the Advancement of Student Learning (aka the R&D Center.) We are a collaborative between the school district and Colorado State University. I am employed by the school district but do a lot of University stuff too.

We study the issues facing education today and how they are going to impact the schools. We also do a lot of work evaluating grants the district, the university and outside parties receive. We are currently working on projects that focus on State Mandated Testing and does it really work?, evaluating a grant that helps History teachers become better teachers, and a project that focuses on 4 elementary schools in Denver and their Early Childhood Education programs. We have a lot of other projects going on as well.

I do a lot of work entering survey results, keeping track of who is working on which project and general office stuff. All of this requires working with numbers. Some of our people are more number (quantitative) oriented and some are more word (qualitative) oriented.

Here is our website. Although, I’m not completely sure how up to date it is.
No grades involved…thank goodness!

Does reading and working with numbers a lot hurt your eyes?

Some. I actually wear glasses when I’m at work since I am on the computer all the time. I’m suppose to wear them at home but I don’t always. They help some.

What kind of stuff do you like to read? I don’t really like to read anything.

My favorite authors are John Grisham, Nora Roberts and Sandra Brown. I did a lot of reading over the summer. But right now, I don’t have a lot of time because I am taking two classes this semester, Introduction to Business and Accounting Principles. They actually require quite a bit of reading and it puts me to sleep sometimes, so I read it at bedtime.

What sites do you visit when you are on your computer?

Well, the first site I generally visit is the Frontstretch. Then I checkout the Dale Jr. Pit Stop (, Jayski’s, NOL and That’s Racin’. From time to time, I’ll checkout Kevin Harvick’s website and a few other racing related ones. My classes are online, so I have to visit them daily, plus I check the news sites, locally the 9 News website ( and nationally, And if there is a trivia question is need of researching, Google is my friend! And of course, I have to check on my fantasy racing teams too. Although, I don’t seem to be doing very well with them. But this is my first year at trying this, so it doesn’t bother me. I also check out a couple wrestling related ones and my favorite soap opera’s website too.

Do you put a ‘man block’ on the TV?

No. Sheldn stays up late on the weekends because of his work schedule and we all know what kind of stuff is on TV at that time of night. If I blocked anything, he’d figure out how to block my favorite soap opera.

Read more Sweet as Colorado wildflowers--meet 'ColoradoNASCARFan' ...