NASCAR 101: Attending Your First Race
Dear Glenn Beck,
Recently, I heard that you expressed a strong interest in attending a NASCAR race. I think that’s a great idea and I know you’ll love it. There are a few things everyone needs to know in order to get the most out of their first race:
Pick a Favorite Driver & Team
Admittedly, cars going around a track for up to 500 laps can become overwhelming and repetitive at times. That’s why you need to pick a driver & team and cheer for them. I know you like learning about people’s stories and each race is a story for the drivers and their crews. They battle with adversaries, overcome obstacles, fight to be the best, all in hopes of achieving victory. Of course, I recommend you follow one of our drivers — Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, or Joey Logano carry the banner for SuperBowl-Winning owner Joe Gibbs and the various companies they represent. I think they’ll provide you with plenty of enjoyment! Oh, and I know you are big on Twitter, so be sure to follow @JoeGibbsRacing because we’ll give you live updates from pit road.
Get a Radio Scanner or a Sprint FanView
“Who is leading? Who has lost a lap? What position is my favorite driver in? Woah, can I see that replay again!?” These are all questions that are sure to come up while watching a race. You can find the answers by listening to driver-team communications on a radio scanner or the helpful Sprint FanView. The FanView is a radio scanner, but also has a display that shows the TV broadcast and Radio broadcast, leaderboards, and more. Without a doubt, hearing the driver convey what he is feeling in the car to the crew chief is one of the most fascinating parts of our sport. Will the crew be able to tune the car to the driver’s liking and make it faster? You’ll have to wait and watch the story develop!
Pay Attention to Pit Road
Speaking of crews, there is as much action on pit road as there is on the track. Our pit crews are professional athletes who train almost every day to be the fastest in NASCAR. In fact, our No. 11 FedEx crew members are the defending Champions! Watching 6 crewmembers change four tires, fuel, and make chassis adjustments in less than 13 seconds is quite a spectacle. It is organized chaos and what results can easily determine the outcome of a race. There’s also a speed limit the drivers need to adhere to when making pit stops. Watching them enter and exit the pits is always entertaining.
Enjoy the Pre-Race Festivities
I know you are all about heart-felt patriotism, so I know you’ll enjoy the pre-race activities. If you can, attend a race at Talladega, the Memorial Day race in Charlotte, or the race in Richmond on September 11th which will have a moving commemoration to the 10 year anniversary of 9/11/2001. In addition to the patriotism, I think you’ll enjoy mingling with some fellow Americans (and even those who have made the trip to the race from another country!) The merchandise trailers and showcars are something to see at any race.
Remember, a NASCAR race is an all-day event, so you’ll need comfortable shoes (we recommend HiTec), sunscreen, earplugs, binoculars, and a seat cushion! Granted, you would get the star treatment by NASCAR and the fans, but if you want to experience the race from the grandstand all of these items are a must.
Arrive Early & Stay For the Exciting Finish
Of course, none of these tips will matter if you’re stuck in traffic outside the track. We average 100,000 fans at our races. Sometimes the track becomes the largest city within a 300 mile radius on raceday. Therefore, plan ahead, arrive early, and pack a cooler with a lunch and you favorite beverages.
Hopefully these tips will help make your first race all the more enjoyable. I have no doubt you will be hooked after your NASCAR experience.
Boris is the fan’s connection to JGR. He is the man behind JGR’s Twitter account @JoeGibbsRacing and travels to every race giving fans an inside look at their favorite NASCAR team. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org