Marc Goossens may be set to finish this NASCAR season dead last in 69th place – some 6668 Nextel points behind circuit leader Jimmie Johnson – but the driver and his team are excited about having the No. 1 pick in the upcoming NASCAR draft.
“We have many areas to improve,” said Goossens. “But drafting a tire changer like this Dennis Blair from Mobile —well, he’s a once in a lifetime kind of tire changer. He’s single-handedly revolutionizing the position of tire-changing guy.”
Blair, who has become a star in Alabama dirt track circles for his fast tire-changing ways, is expected to be taken first by Goossens in next month’s draft. The No. 1 overall selection would only further cement Blair’s legend in the state.
“I had the honor of working on the same crew as Dennis once,” said Mickey Rollins, a longtime tire-changer at Southern tracks. “He had the back-left tire, I had the back-right. And even though I had a clean change, he had his done in easily a full half-second quicker. It was amazing. And that was a few years ago when he was just coming up. I bet now he could best me by 0.55 or 0.6 seconds. The guy is a legitimate tire-changing superstar.”
But the hot shot tire-changer could hold out.
“I’m only going to sign a deal that’s right for me,” said Blair. “I want a brand new lug nut gun. And I want a couple of brand new, shiny, satin NASCAR jackets. And I want a Dale Earnhardt Fathead. Give me all that and I’ll sign. But come up short in any area — like trying to give me a Dale Jr. Fathead instead of a Dale Sr. Fathead — and I’ll hold out until next year’s draft. I know what I’m worth. The two seconds I give a car every race are invaluable.”
Goossens hopes it doesn't come to that.
"If Blair indicates he's not going to sign, we may just have to pick the best available after him," he said. "There is a gas tank filler-upper guy out there who would be a good value pick."