We were at the Sears Craftsman Nationals Friday night.
Here's what I wrote then: (from Neons.org)
"Top Fuel wasn't running as hot as Funny Car. In between rounds we went back to the pits and watched Darrell Russell's crew for the entire rebuild. Darrell is very nice, not at all like stupid John Force He packs his own chute and pours his own gas too. (And did I mention he's quite cute on top of all that? ) Anyhoo, we must have been good luck, cause he came out in the last run of the night and busted a 4.511 @ 328.54, for the #1 spot and obliterated the track record. This was the quickest run I've ever seen. Awesome!"
I was so impressed with Darrell Russell. He was going to be my new favorite race car driver. I even dragged Dennis out of our way to pass by his pit one last time after he put down that amazing run!
I checked up on the results last night on the NHRA website. I saw that Russell had had a crash, but there were no more details at that time.
Dennis left for Wisconsin with his Dad first thing this morning. I came back in from seeing them off and flipped on the TV. The first thing I heard was, "Stay tuned for details of the fatal crash at Gateway last night."
Oh crap! I knew exactly what that meant. I was stunned and shocked and upset much more than I probably should have been by the news that he had died in that wreck.
I had a very upsetting day at work because of it. Just cast such a pall over everything. Strange how that happens sometimes at the news of death. Maybe it's just my birthday yesterday has got me more in touch with mortality in general right now. I just know that Darrell Russell was absolutely NOT dead Friday night. Everything was so normal, so routine. Nobody had any idea what was coming. Of course Dennis and his Dad just left to go drag racing too, which isn't helping matters any!
Rest in Peace, Mr. Darrell Russell