Saturday, May 26, 2012

Walking the Charlotte Motor Speedway

Yesterday we went to the Coca-Cola Track Walk & Summer Cookout at Charlotte Motor Speedway. It was a bonus to our tickets to Sunday's Coca-Cola 600 race. It was also the first day at 90 degrees - wow just for us.

We entered the raceway at top and got this great view.

Yes, Coke put on this event.

Ray at the start/finish line.

Look at that bank. Notice everyone walked the level part.

Our seats are in the third section in, near the top. Yes, right in the sun.
Oh well, a positive attitude, a hat and SPF 100 will go a long way.
Plus, it doesn't matter where you are, you're gonna sweat. 

Here we are on Pit Row. We actually ate lunch here.

The Coke drivers.

Check out this Coke bike; there's a large coke bottle on the other side.

A coke car.

The lunch was typical grill stuff - chicken, hot dogs, hamurgers, etc. Plus Coke drinks. The most impressive thing we found out when we talked to one of the servers is that all the people cooking and serving were local volunteers. And there were lots of people working there. It was a very hot day and even hotter there on the track. What a great thing to do! We appreciated getting a chance to see the track close up and check out where we're sitting and to see the drivers. However, it was very hot so we didn't stay more than a couple hours, but we did find the air conditioned gift shop and then walked the outside section that has the drivers trucks with stuff to buy. It was nice to get those things before the race and not have to worry about carrying them around on race day.

Then we went to the North Carolina Racing Hall of Fame. It's a small local operation in Mooresville that survives on donations and entrance fees. It has lots of odd things for sale to help them make money inside and in the parking lot. Ray bought a piece of a finder from a car that won the Daytona 500 in 2010. It will be part of his fence art in the backyard - his souvenirs.

Lots of donated cars in here.
Check out this cardboard stand-up of Dale senior.
It gave me a double take when I turned a corner.

Remember their history is in running moonshine.

It was getting late but we decided to check out JR Motorsports - Dale Jr's operation - a few miles away. Guess who was there? Yes, Dale and Danica too; they were doing interviews.

Talking about Sunday's race.

Guess who? No, it's just a wax Dale. Yeah, it's kinda creepy close up.

Racing is really big in this area. Downtown they've closed off streets for days with a street fair called "Speed Street". We decided not to fight those crowds.

After this we still had a little daylight and I spied a nail salon. So Ray occupied himself while I had a mani-pedi. Thanks Ray, I needed that!
Today we're heading north to visit with Ray's friend; they're gonna show us around their area.

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