Three years ago, Green-White-Checker started out as a little blog that covered a few tracks in central Maine, with some PASS North Series racing thrown in for good measure. By the time the 2009 season ended in northern New England, GWC had provided extensive coverage of racing on Maine's short tracks, as well as PASS and ACT Late Model Tour events and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racing at New Hampshire, Dover and Daytona International Speedway.
To put it mildly, GWC grew up fast. Almost too fast, in fact.
It's been increasingly hard to put these thoughts into words, but here it goes, anyway: Green-White-Checker is closing its doors.
I can't even begin to name all of the friends I've made in this business, friends that are now scattered across the country. I won't name all of you -- because, like any good victory lane interview, I'm bound to forget a few too many important names.
Those of you who know me best might find it awkward to see these thoughts finally written out on a computer or BlackBerry screen -- after all, I've been talking about putting an end to the site almost since before the 2009 season began. Others of you might have had no inclination that this was going to happen at all.
As I start looking back, sometimes I can't even believe how much I did in a few years -- the stories I broke, the sheer number of races I covered, the opinions I've held and publicly shared.
But where GWC really took its heaviest toll on me was not in what I covered, but in what I didn't cover. I spent as many hours beating myself up over all the stuff I was unable to get to or put on the site in a timely fashion as I did actually doing the work that I did.
Only a handful of you will ever really understand that statement, and that's exactly the way it should be. Good journalists never tell you how much they do which you don't even realize. They just do it because they have the passion for it.
My passion for being a good journalist has not disappeared -- but I found myself more and more, as my children grow old enough to know the difference, unable to supress the same passion for spending time with my family.
Really, the decision to stop with GWC was a fairly easy one to make. Over the last three years, GWC -- while rewarding -- has taken its toll on this author's life. With very little financial backing (my own fault, nobody else's....), GWC took an incredible amount of time and money away from my ridiculously supportive family. With very few prospects for the coming season, as well as a new career move which I made to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, the time had come to make this inevitable decision.
It's simply not fair to spend every spare dime of my family's earnings so that Dad can be gone for three, four, five days at a time.
I still believe that the worldwide web has a place for regionalized stock car racing coverage, and I've not closed that door entirely. I only know that GWC can no longer be a solo project which I work tirelessly on for little reward beyond a job well done.
I hope that in some small way I've given people plenty of reason to think, to open discussions and to find a landing spot for all their varied interests in New England's racing scene. It's a colorful and vibrant landscape, one that has been a real treat to document.
Thanks to all of you. We'll see you at the track sometime soon.