Yes, once again it’s NASCAR Sunday out here at Infineon Raceway. Most of us remember it as Sears Point.

The first year I covered any type of racing for the Press Democrat was 1987. I remember the old Sears Point Raceway with a rickety old wood grandstand and a media center built from plywood that would sway alarmingly in SP’s infamous winds. I covered the first NASCAR event here.

A reflective moment on Sunday June 26, 2011 at Infineon Raceway. (Kent Porter / Press Democrat)

On the very first practice lap on turn 2, during the 1989 inaugural Winston Cup here in Sonoma, Dale Earnhardt locked it up and did a complete 360. I recall getting to the track that Sunday race day took nearly three hours.

Since then, I’ve shot every NASCAR cup event here at the Point. Witnessed a thousand spin-outs. Sprained an ankle while shooting in the old carousel in 1990.

Hurled in 1994 during a particularly hot afternoon during qualifying.

Had my Hot Pass pulled by a Winston Cup official for arguing about where I could shoot in 1991, only to get it back when he dropped it. I don’t think he knew he did, but I never saw that guy again. I spent the night at the 50 acre paddock-I cant remember the year-and documented the antics of fans late at night, waking-up to some incredible morning light.

I have a thousand memories of coverage out here.  I get assigned too shoot the event year after year.

No problem. It’s just a given during NASCAR week, Porter’s going to be absent from the newsroom roll call.

So, here’s to Sunday.

I’m gonna hurl again though, if one more person asks me if I can shoot an ant on the moon with that lens.

Post Script- 8:41 PM June 26.  How many times was I asked the above question?  Almost a dozen.  Did I meet Ralph today?  Nope.  But did get some decent pictures anyway.

-Kent Porter