Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

No Racing? No Problem - Drivers Use Twitter on Dreary Day; Social Media Allows Competitors to Communicate with Their Fans

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

No Racing? No Problem - Drivers Use Twitter on Dreary Day; Social Media Allows Competitors to Communicate with Their Fans

Article excerpt

Byline: Garry Smits

DAYTONA BEACH | In the days before social media, drivers would pass the time during rain delays sleeping in their RVs or playing poker with each other, crewamembers and even the media.

Now, many of them Tweet ... a lot.

One thing that sent the NASCAR-related Twitter-verse buzzing Sunday was the lengthy delay of the Daytona 500 due to stubborn rain cells that were passing over the area.

NASCAR drivers, famous for their relationship with fans, began communicating with them and each other through Twitter on their smart phones, beginning after the driver introductions.

Some tweets expressed the obvious.

"I got a feeling this is going to be a long day," tweeted David Ragan.

Others were comedic, such as this offering by an unknown tweeter using the Stewart-Haas Racing team account: "BREAKING NEWS: Billy Crystal bows out of Oscar hosting to watch rain-delay coverage of #Daytona500. Family Guy's Peter Griffin fills in."

Yet another driver used the delay and Twitter to communicate a special offer to his fans, and perhaps answer a question tweeted by Danica Patrick.

Landon Cassill, who drives the No. 83 Toyota Burger King car, tweeted: "I'm headed to Burger King outside [the Speedway] and give these free Whopper cards away. Tweet me if you're coming."

That came just a few minutes after Patrick tweeted: "I wonder how busy the restaurants are outside the track?"

Cassill was as good as his word. He followed his earlier tweet with: "I'm here now if anyone wants a free Whopper. Don't be shy. I've gotaWhopper cards!"

And never let it be said that wives of race car drivers aren't in tune with the competition. DeLana Harvick, the wife of driver Kevin Harvick, tweeted: "How about not watch golf?" in response to her husband's tweet, "Well, what should we do now?"

The PGA Tour's first World Golf Championship, the Accenture Match Play, began on NBC at 2 p.m., under sunny skies near Tucson, Ariz. Butanot every driver followed DeLana Harvick's suggestion: Scott Speed was trading tweets with golf fans about the progress of the championship match between Rory McIlroy and Hunter Mahan.

DeLana Harvick has been known to send as many as 50 tweets during a race giving her husband's status to fans. …

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