In honor of the NASCAR banquet tonight (Friday), I offer a Christmas poem:

'Twas the night of the banquet and all through the halls, every creature was stirring, even the boss.

The trophies were stacked on the stage with great care, in hopes Jimmie Johnson soon would be there.

The drivers were nestled, all snug in their suits, while visions of victories danced in their heads.

Jeff Gordon in his tux and Ingrid in her gown, they settled the kids to bed and were party bound.

When out in the hall there arose such a clatter, I sprang from my seat fast to see what was the matter.

Away to the staircase I flew like a flash, looked down the hallway and almost crashed.

The drinks on the tables of the banquet hall, gave the lustre of champagne to all with a glow.

When what to my wandering eyes should appear, but the winning driver and eight crew men with beer.

With a little old owner so lively and quick, I knew in a moment it was Rick Hendrick.

More rapid than race cars, his crew men came, and he whistled and shouted and called them by name.

Now Jimmie, now Chad, now Ron, now Earl, now Rich, now Kenneth, and Mike, to the top of the stage, up by the wall, now dash away, dash away, dash away all.

As the banquet begins everyone has butterflies, to say Chad Knaus is the best crew chief could be a lie.

So up to the podium, one by one they flew, to collect a paycheck of how much, nobody knew.

And then in a twinkle, I heard in the hall, "I need to go shopping, take me to the mall."

As I drew in my head and was turning around, Chandra Johnson had a tear in her gown.

She was dressed to the max from head to foot, and her diamonds they glowed, not tarnished with soot.

A bundle of joy she had on her back, it was baby Genevieve she had in a sack.

Her eyes how they twinkled, her dimples so merry, her cheeks were like roses, her nose like a cherry.

Her droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow, she was dressed in all white, from head to toe.

Back at the banquet the night was still young and Dale Jr. was starting to have some fun.

He had a few drinks but no food in his belly, he should have asked for some peanut butter and jelly.

He was short and skinny, but jolly and fun, and he laughed when I saw him start to come undone.

A wink in his eye and a twist of his head, he walked way fast, he had nothing to dread.

It was Mark Martin's turn to speak and he went straight to work, congratulating Johnson on his great year with perks.

And laying a finger aside his nose, he vowed he'd be back and he'd be on his toes.

Johnson sprang to the stage, to his team gave a whistle, grabbed up his trophy and was gone like a missile.

But I heard him exclaim as he raced out of sight, see you all in Daytona, have a wonderful night."