Many visitors to this blog know I have been a motorsports fan since I was a little kid. It’s a long story, but here’s a quick summary in case you don’t know. Even after some high-end hearing loss directly related to too many rock concerts and auto races, it’s still a thrill to go see a race live. After all the races I’ve been to, I’ve only stayed in the infield one time before, in a van at Charlotte Motor Speedway (now Lowes) and never in an RV. That was the plan for this year’s Daytona 500. My friends, Dave and Norm, left NJ on Monday and arrived at our spot in the infield by Tuesday evening. I flew out 6 AM Thursday morning and after two plane flights, a cab, a Greyhound bus ride and another cab, I arrived in the infield as Craftsman Truck Qualifying was finishing up and was ready for that first beer of the day, around 9:30 PM.
To me, the coolest thing about staying in the infield is waking up and you’re AT THE TRACK! No traffic, no hassels, no “I’ve Never Seen ‘Em Backed Up This Far Before!” We had to wear these sparkly wristbands to get access to our section and it was like living in a gated community. Kinda nice, actually. They even delivered the local paper right to your front bumper every morning!
Watching the races from the infield does pose it’s problems: you can’t see a whole lot but we had this little Nextel Fan Monitor with about fifty buttons on it for switching to all the cameras around the speedway and in the cars, very cool. You also get to meet and talk and hang out with some other really cool race fans from all over, even if they do root for the wrong drivers. Right, E?!
Sweet spot to film/watch the race from…maybe next year!
Jeff Gordon’s Dupont Chevy going through final tech-inspection.
Being the Fifty Year Anniversary of the race, most of the old winning cars were present and cruising around the track at various times. Here’s a few of my favorites:
Sterling Marlin’s Kodak Chevy
Two of Richard Petty’s winning cars, a Plymouth and the STP Dodge.
Got back on Tuesday to find a ton of new work – yeah!