And So It Begins...

Drivers were revving up their engines left and right today at the Houston Grand Prix. The morning started out with teams getting their practice runs and feel for the track. In other words, it wasn’t very exciting, which is probably why the only other people there at 10 a.m. besides me and my caffeine-starved companion were other media people, volunteers and crew members. However, qualifying races start later this evening and the laid-back atmosphere gave us free reign. So we headed to where we thought the action was – pit row. Sure it’s fun to watch cars race, but it’s even better to see five guys change four tires, fill a car up with gas and get out any other kinks in under a minute – especially when you think about all the times you had to sit up at the mechanics' for four hours waiting for an oil change. Maybe we should get McDonald’s to sponsor our cars …

Tonight features not only the qualifying rounds but also a concert by the Eli Young Band and Paul Rogers. However, it’s hard to imagine why these things would be overlapped on the schedule considering the sound of a car whizzing by at max speed drowns out everything but, well, the sound of another car whizzing by. Speaking of, if there is one piece of advice we give to those heading out to the Prix, it’s to bring ear plugs. Sure, race fans may think “duh,” but for those accompanying a friend or just going to check it out, make sure you have something to stuff in your ears other than your fingers. And remember the kids need ‘em too. The action continues tomorrow with more concerts and races, so stay tuned to HouStoned for updates. And now for your moment of zen ...

-- Dusti Rhodes

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