Monday, May 26, 2008

Random Notes From Race Day

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 5/26/2008 No comments
I captured this while sitting in traffic. Gotta love that sign.

I attended the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway yesterday. Here are some things that stood out from my experience.
  • The traffic will make you never want to drive again. I went to the October race at Lowe's so I knew what to expect this time. It's just unavoidable when there are 160,000 people headed to one place.
  • A lot of guys are walking around without shirts.
  • If people aren't drinking beer, they're drinking energy drinks. Is this because Dale Jr. is now sponsored by AMP?
  • We all know this, but I'm reminded of it when I go to a race. Everything has a sponsor, so there are company logos everywhere. This is, after all, the Coca-Cola 600, which is held at Lowe's Motor Speedway as part of the Sprint Cup series.
  • Not only do you see corporate signage everywhere around you, but it's above you also. All day small engine planes are flying with advertising banners attached to them.
  • NASCAR is very patriotic and since this is Memorial Day weekend there are a number of tributes to military men and women and veterans during the pre-race activities. Hearing "Taps" played is a touching moment that reminds you of how many soldiers have given their lives. And the four fighter jets that flew over at the end of "The Star-Spangled Banner" is equally poignant. Plus, the sea of red, white, and blue helped drown out all of the Confederate flags that are rampant amongst fans.
  • There are a lot of women dressed in "club clothes": fancy tops, tight jeans, and heels. I don't blame you, girl. Nab yourself a NASCAR driver and you'll never have to work another day in your life. Just enjoy your life in that big house on Lake Norman.
  • While I'm no expert on this, there appear to be a lot of fake breasts. I don't blame you, girl...
  • NASCAR is a male-dominated sport, of course, but there are plenty of women working in the industry, from members of the race teams to NASCAR reps to track security and service personnel.
  • Where are the black people?
  • Yao Ming is a giant. I knew he was 7 ft. 5 in. but it wasn't until he walked past me that I felt short, and I'm fairly tall myself. In the corner of my eye, no lie, I thought someone was walking on stilts. I turned, realized what was happening, and said, "That's Yao Ming!" He was wearing a Beijing Olympics shirt and was surrounded by an army of people, towering over them all, as he made his way through pit row.
  • I agree with fans that a race is more exciting in person—the sound, the speed, the wrecks—but I just don't ever think I'll become a fan.


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