2012 surprises, tips for the track and listening to NASCAR on SiriusXM Radio
by Dustin Long
A weekend without racing didn’t mean that the Backseat Drivers Fan Council had a break. While offering opinions throughout the season, the Backseat Drivers Fan Council also is here to help fans with tips this week on how to make your experience at the track better.
And oh yes, the Fan Council also is weighing in on a few subjects, including the biggest surprise this season.
TIPS TO MAKE THE RACE MORE ENJOYABLE
With many of the Backseat Drivers Fan Council veterans of numerous races, I asked them what they would tell someone going to the track that they should do to make that event more enjoyable.
Here’s what Fan Council members said:
• Camp... pretty much any track. Camp at least once and walk around; meet and get to know other campers/NASCAR fans. Will meet some of the best people and greatest fans around camping at a NASCAR track. Have met folks over the years that will be lifelong friends and my first time was on a whim at the invite of another friend.
• I would tell any fan going to Indianapolis Motor Speedway to go to the infield and visit the museum along with sitting in turn one during practice or qualifying. The speed is amazing and the sound reverberates off the stands. It's like sitting at the old Yankee Stadium or other places similar.
• 1. The museum at Darlington. 2. Go to a Tweetup! 3. Hit a local short track on Friday night and see where these guys got their starts!
• Pit passes at least once in your life.
• Experience a night race, day races are great but night races have a whole different vibe to them.
• Going to the Driver introductions. It costs extra at most tracks but it is well worth it! Being on the track so close to the drivers, the national anthem and the flyover is incredible from right on the track.
• Go to Jeff Gluck Tweetup. Jeff enjoys meeting the fans & he usually has a surprise.
• When at RIR take an extra day to visit the places of historical interest around the central VA region, the museum of the Confederacy, The Wilderness battlefield, Seven Pines, Tredegar, the state Capitol, St. John's Church, Monticello.
• Eating at Ridgewood BBQ about a mile from Bristol Motor Speedway is a must, if you don’t mind the wait obviously.
• Get a scanner to listen to the drivers. Very entertaining.
• Be prepared to have a long wait after the race to leave the parking area. Just pull out the grill, cook some food and enjoy some cool drinks. After an hour or so you will be able to leave and so you will be behind the cars that left as soon as the race was over. A lot less stress this way & saves gas.
• You have to do the No Limits celebration at Texas. Eddie Gossage knows how to throw a party and entertain people. He always has drivers there and the music and food is awesome.
• Stand with your face on the fence in Turn Four at Daytona when the cars are coming by. Absolutely amazing.
• At Dover, be sure to go a little south and east to see the Delaware Bay and some of the beach communities like Rehoboth and Lewes which are less than hour away. Also some of the best birding in the country is within 15 minutes of the track at Bombay Wildlife and other Wildlife Preserves nearby.
• Since I'm a “people watcher,” I think the hidden gem is studying the fans. Big, small, skinny, fat, half-dressed, over-dressed, beer-swilling, pretzel-stuffing, you name it. It's a study in Americana at the best _ and sometimes the worst. Yet, when standing for the invocation, they take off their hats, they sing along (thankfully at times) with the musical artist struggling with the national anthem, and they erupt in joyous shouts as the jets roar overhead.