By Brian Williams, Anchor and managing editor
I have been a fan of auto racing (admittedly more stock car-oriented than open-wheel) since I attended my first race at our local fairgrounds at the age of five, and yet I've never made it to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway...until now.
I'm in an office inside the famous "pagoda," the multi-layered "reviewing stand" that is instantly-recognizable to viewers of the sport on television. It's a dreary, rainy day here at the track -- thankfully, the forecast for the race weekend is stunning.
The track, an American sports legend first built in 1909, will be our backdrop for tonight's broadcast, which will also feature an interview with the biggest star in the starting grid, Danica Patrick.
We had a great day here, including a visit to our incredibly dominant NBC Station (in our industry parlance, it's a "blowtorch") WTHR in Indianapolis -- one of the most successful network affiliates in the nation, and home to a huge chunk of Nightly News viewers. Our station, and this city -- are home to a huge number of truly terrific people.
I've just completed our afternoon conference call/editorial meeting -- we've got a lot of news to get to -- and let's just say I'm in a distracting environment. Racing fuel, famous drivers, stacks of tires, fast cars, race fans and over two miles of smooth asphalt make concentration difficult for me -- but I'll soldier on, and we hope you can join us as we wind up another week.