This olelongrooffan was lucky enough to score a killer pass to the NASCAR Speedweeks and I thought I would share with those of you Counting Along With Me my experience on Saturday out at the World Center of Racing, the Daytona International Speedway.
First off, I must thank thejeepjunkie for hooking me up with that pass as well as those dudes over at
Yeah, thejeepjunkie and this olelongrooffan are going to stop in
As usual for NASCAR events, there is no way this olelongrooffan is going to pay those outrageous parking prices so I parked, free, at the US Post Office a mere 12 minute stroll north of the Speedway on Bill France Boulevard (thanks to my fellow taxpayers for this privilege). I arrived at the information booth just outside the NASCAR Turn 4 and grabbed a ride on a stretch golf cart to the FanZone and strolled on into the garage area to begin the festivities for the day.
The first thing this olelongrooffan did was capture an underhood image of a Chevy V-8 carborated NASCAR race car engine for your viewing pleasure.
Daytona 500 Club Tower from across pit road.
"Just follow the fluids," was his response. And I did.
Well, if you Counters out there know anything about this olelongrooffan you know what transpired next.
Yep, I thanked that official for the information and headed over to see those shocks and such.
And yeah Counters, the lower level series these guys started in are all based out of North Carolina or out west and short of moving to either of those places, the possibility of this olelongrooffan becoming a tech inspector is remote.
Now all of these teams have covers for the cowl intake area of their race cars and some of them are pretty clever. For instance on the Caterpillar sponsored machine, has this
Then it was time for the driver's introduction for the Bud Shoot Out. For about 45 minutes before the introductions for a race, the powers that be at the Speedway set up some staircases to the grandstands along the front stretch to allow fans to come down to the infield and check it out. Credentials be d*mned. They are then hustled out immediately after the introduction and only those of us with adequate credentials are allowed to remain.
Well, during the introduction of the ARCA drivers earlier, the fans were permitted to wander along pit road almost undisturbed during this time. However, for the Bud Shoot Out,
This olelongrooffan has long since realized that during this time of spectator over load, I need to find someplace else to be and this time was no different.
As such, I was able to spot this on the cowl of Jamie MacMurray's Bass Pro car.
Right after that image of Jeff Burton was taken my elcheapo 28dollar ebay digital decided the 114 images it had on it was enough for the day and stopped working. It was okay though. I knew once it settled down it would be fine, and it is. Anyway this olelongrooffan was planning on heading back to the Taj Mahal as the 8+ hours I had been out at the Speedway was plenty and I was a bit chilled due to the mid 40 degree weather.
So, right as I was leaving Pit Road and heading toward the garages, who do I see but thejeepjunkie heading right at me. "H*ll longroof, don't you answer your phone?" Well, as I had been around rather loud noises all day, the fact I didn't hear my cell ring is no surprise.
Well, Counters, as tired and cold as this olelongrooffan was, I certainly was not going to abandon thejeepjunkie in the pits for the Bud Shoot Out so we hung out a bit. We watched a couple of laps and decided to head on out for our respective abodes.
As we were walking out, we came to the place where the golf cart had dropped me off earlier in the day. I told thejeepjunkie that I had asked the driver of that shuttle cart earlier in the day when they quit driving and his response was about midnight. So, I knew we had a chance to catch one out of the infield to the area where thejeepjunkie had parked. We waited a few minutes and one didn't show so I asked the waiting bus driver if he could get us a cart and he, erroneously, replied they had all gone home.
So I resigned myself to walking through that tunnel and beyond to thejeepjunkie waiting ride. Unbeknownst to me, while I was over talking to that tram like bus driver, thejeepjunkie had spotted a tour bus with the baggage compartment open. Inside was a cooler and a few 24 packs of the blue canned beverage thejeepjunkie so desires. As I am walking across the street to where thejeepjunkie was waiting, I see the driver of that tour bus hand thejeepjunkie a couple cans of that cold St. Louis based beverage!!
We hoofed it through that tunnel which is the same age as this olelongrooffan, got to the other side and proved that tram bus driver wrong as there were 3 or 4 limo golf carts sitting there with their drivers shooting the bull. We climbed into one and asked for a ride to thejeepjunkie's Ranger and were delivered safe and sound.
And during that ride, this olelongrooffan heard thejeepjunkie pop the top of one of those cans and he said to the driver of that limo cart and this olelongrooffan
"What a way to Celebrate Life!"
And this olelongrooffan concurs with thejeepjunkie's observation.