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In NASCAR death is never easy to accept, and the sudden loss of David Poole, well, damn -- it hurts


David Poole: Adios, amigo. It's been good times... (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)


   By Mike Mulhern

   The last time I saw David Poole we were – surprise, surprise – arguing.
   Can't remember exactly what it was about, but Sunday morning at Talladega he was taking one point of view about restrictor plate racing and I was taking another.
   I think I was saying 'fix the car,' and he was saying 'fix the track.'
   One of my themes over that weekend was trying plate-racing at California Speedway.
   To which Poole would simply roll his eyes.
   We were like that, pit bull versus pit bull.
   And it was all fun, every minute of every season with him…no matter how wrong-headed he might be on whatever the topic.
   So the sudden loss of my buddy Tuesday morning is quite a burden to carry at the moment.
   Quite honestly, David literally worked himself to death. He wrote so many books…he did that radio show – for Martians and truckers, I would rib him – four hours a day five days a week, sometimes up at 3 a.m., depending on the time zone he was working in, for that 7 a.m. M-F opening bell…and he wrote for the newspaper.
   In fact, David Poole was really the last of the full-time NASCAR beat writers in this country, with newspapers pulling back on coverage and abandoning the sport in an embarrassing wave of journalistic retreat.
   People die in this sport. It's just the nature of the beast.
   And I've lost a lot of friends in this game….Alan Kulwicki, Neil Bonnett, Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Bobby Hamilton, Benny Parsons, Grant Adcox, Tim Richmond, Bill France Jr., T. Wayne Robertson, Ralph Seagraves, Kenny Irwin Jr., Adam Petty, Bruce Jacobi, J. D. McDuffie, Mark Donohue, Bobby Isaac, Harry Hyde….and how many more…some names you may not remember, some names you might never have known. But each one hurts.
   It's never easy. And sometimes it takes time to hit home.
   It's been a couple hours now, and there is still the element of disbelief. Heck, it took me more than a year to accept the Big E's death, it just seemed so unreal.
  The highest praise from Poole was 'Mulhern, I hate to say it, but this one time you're right.'
   I think he said that maybe three times during our 13 years together.
   David Poole was quite opinionated, to put it mildly. And he was rarely, if ever, actually willing to concede he might be wrong about an issue. Only that you might actually be right, every once in a blue moon.
    I'm sure that mano a mano was one thing that led Fox sports boss David Hill to pair us on Pit Bull, that argumentative TV show that was apparently too hot for NASCAR executives to handle…though drivers and crews and fans loved it.
    David and I, and whoever else they might put on there as cannon fodder for us, would argue about anything and everything. Even when the cameras weren't running.
    Too bad Hill and his TV buddies never found the guts to put Pit Bull back on the air.
   Now it's too late.  
   So, so long, David, old friend. Till we meet again….



Really nice job,

Really nice job, Mike.

It always hurts to lose

It always hurts to lose someone you know and respect.

I agree with Mulhern... Very

I agree with Mulhern...

Very nice article.


Condolences to his family,

Condolences to his family, friends and collegues...

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