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Kahne's Korner: Politicians, paint and playing games

3/8/2007 - NASCAR

I didn't follow the news last weekend while at home for a wedding, but I was told one of our state politicians didn't do us any favors in NASCAR's effort to build a track in Washington.

I don't know how smart it is to say that "these aren't the type of people you want living next door to you." What's a NASCAR type? There are all kinds of different people that follow this sport.

You're talking to a lot of people if you say you don't want that type there, if you ask me.

I've tried to play a big part in a lot of things to help NASCAR get a track in the Seattle area. Greg Biffle, Sam Hornish and I were at one of the events and I've hosted several events at other tracks.

It would be neat if it happened. The fans I know are really into NASCAR. It could be huge for this area. I just can't imagine why somebody would be against it.

The wedding was great, although with practice rained out for the "Car of Tomorrow" test at Bristol and a few other things I didn't make it for the rehearsal on Friday night.

I didn't get there until just in time for the wedding on Saturday. I guess they weren't worried. Nobody ever called. I got there and was able to step right in without any problems.

They had a reception afterwards with a lot of people I hadn't seen in a while. I stayed up way too late.

Now I head to Las Vegas. I really like the city. We had a huge deal at the Bellagio Casino Hotel on Super Bowl Sunday with Jamie McMurray. I won some money on the Indianapolis Colts.

They had 75 televisions in this large room and tons of people betting. Everybody was up and down throughout the game on how their bets were going. It was a party I would never be able to throw. It was way too big.

I never dreamed of things like that growing up in Washington, but now that I'm in a position to do so I'm going to watch a lot of Super Bowls from the Bellagio from now on.

I like racing in Vegas. I have a fourth-place finish and a second there, so it could be a really good weekend for us.

McDonald's is back on the car as a primary sponsor. I never really performed well with McDonald's on the car. We came really close, but I'd like to get them back in Victory Lane. It's been a while since they've been there.

Usually when we run different paint scheme cars we run pretty well. McDonald's is the only one we haven't done that well with.

We also could use some points since we lost the appeal to get back the 50 NASCAR took from us at Daytona when they suspended my team director, Kenny Francis.

The appeal was something team owner Ray Evernham had to do, but the committee stuck to what NASCAR handed out. It's disappointing to get penalized as much as we did for something that in the past that has been like a $5,000 fine and that's it.

For us to get fined $50,000, docked 50 points and lose our team director for four weeks is out of control if you ask me.

We'll be all right. We tested well at Vegas and have been fast on these types of tracks before.

The harder left-front tire they're making us run because the speeds are so much faster with the new banking will slow us down a little bit, two-tenths of a second probably.

The weather is going to be really warm, so that'll slow us down some more because it'll be a slippery track.

Our whole team is staying at the Mirage. I'm sure there'll be plenty of time to hit the casinos. The majority of the time if I'm gambling I play blackjack.

All the things to do in Vegas can be a distraction if you let it. Personally, I'm excited just to get back in the car after an off weekend. I'll probably gamble a little bit, go to bed early, get up early and be ready to go every day.

I won't do much of the partying. I just want to race. I want to win and finish up front and get some of these points back.

Kasey Kahne is driver of the No. 9 Dodge Dealers Dodge and a 26-year-old native of Enumclaw, Wash. Kahne will take ESPN.com readers inside his life on and off the track each week through writer David Newton.