And the focus today was definitely on Mark Skaife, with the 41 year old hanging up his fulltime helmet after the last race. No-one would begrudge Mark the tv coverage that over the last ten or so laps was wholly concentrated on his climb through the field. It was, after all, the last time we'd watch the master at work in a sprint race.
I wish I could say that he won today. Outside factors dictated his weekend's results, such as Mark Winterbottom's crew boss letting the Falcon go after a pit stop directly into Mark's car. But that's racing, That's why we watch. Not for endless boring processions where nothing ever happens, but for those little things, the things that let the teams down unexpectedly, the things they can never plan for, contingencies that can't be foreseen. And we watch and we think "yeah, they're as prepared as they could be, but life has still thrown a spanner in the works" and in some small way we feel better about our own lives, and our own lack of control.
Thanks, Mark, for the last 21 years of making us all feel a little better about our own lives. Thanks for the joy, and the frustration, but most of all thanks for the magic you brought to the sport I love.