Congratulations Seal Team 6
A job well done gentlemen on the elimination of terrorist mastermind Osama Bin Laden and one of his spawn. Hopefully Bin Laden is enjoying his new role as fish food in the Arabian Sea.
After the successful completion of their mission and the announcement to the world of their success, Bruton is donating 1,000 tickets to the Navy SEALs and their families for the upcoming Cup race on Memorial Day weekend.
According to one vendor sales are off by about 25%. He seems to feel they’ll return back to normal when the economy recovers. 2 other vendors said their sales were 50-70% off of what they were in 2009. Either way, it doesn’t sound too good for the vendors at the track.
From what I could see on TV despite Speed‘s best efforts not to show the grandstands, it appears that only 1/3 of the track seating was open for the Busch Series race and that was only half filled. According to a Henrico County Sherriff, he estimated the crowd at about 25,000 for the Busch race. About the same size as last year.
On the Cup race, the blimp shots pretty much said it all as to the track being about half empty. Based on figures from the Henrico County Sherriff’s Office, there were maybe 70,000 people with cars parked in the parking areas. One entire parking lot went unused. It’s a far cry from the 90,000 fans that’s being claimed by some. Sorry Mike Joy, it was not a good-sized crowd. The track seats 112,029 and with only 70,000 people present, that means there were 42,029 people elsewhere.
No problems for the Speed Energy trailer at Richmond and the premiere show of Fast 5 seems to have went without a hitch. The lucky 200 fans who got to see it with Robby Gordon definitely got a thrill from what I heard. The Cup race was also surprising from an exposure point. Robby not only got mentioned but his car was shown, the premiere of the fast 5 movie was mentioned, and also Robby showing up in the motor coach lot driving a faux police car which was tied in with the Fast 5 promotion.
Manufacturer’s Meeting With NA$CAR
According the press release, it’s supposed to be an informal “town hall” meeting. Based on the past town hall meetings with the team owners and drivers, it’s been more one sided than a true meeting. It’s been “NA$CAR talks, you listen”. Hopefully the manufacturers will address the slower than molasses pace at which NA$CAR is moving when it comes to engine technology and incorporating the looks of the street counterparts that than what we see on the track. As it stands, the trucks are supposed to be going generic soon based on an earlier statement from the Truck Series director. That’s not what fans want to see on the track.
A Hall of Fame Must: Raymond Parks Jr.
Without Raymond Parks Jr, Bill France Sr would never have gotten NASCAR off the ground and never been able to keep it going. He was more important to the sport than Bill France Jr. as were the Staley brothers, Red Byron, and Red Vogt and the number of meetings they held at the Wilkes Hotel in North Wilkesboro in order to form NASCAR. Parks money and business savvy were a key part in the formation of the sanctioning body. Unfortunately for Parks, Bill France Sr and a sly lawyer beat both him and the other Founding Fathers of NASCAR out of their rightful place as owners of the sanctioning body. If you really want to find out more about Raymond Parks Jr, read the book “Driving With the Devil” by Neal Thompson. Thompson really lays out both the history of Parks Jr, early stock car racing, and the formation of NASCAR. Parks Jr wasn’t exactly a saint but was one of the colorful characters who got things off the ground and his contributions need to be recognized. And no, I don’t get anything for mentioning the book. It’s a great piece of racing history that fans should read to see how stock car racing started out.
Female Driver to Join Rolling Thunder Modified Series
On May 21, 2011, Lauren Edgerton, Owner and Driver of the #7 modified and Illusion Racing, is scheduled to make the haul from Chesterfield, Virginia to Newport, Tennessee to compete. Lauren is the 2009 East Carolina Speedway Rookie of the Year and UCAR Rookie of the Year, The 2010 Shenandoah Speedway Driver of the Year and the 2010 Shenandoah Speedway UCAR Champion. In Lauren’s four years from 2007 – 2010 she has compiled 18 Wins, 14 Poles, 51 Top 5’s and 73 Top 10’s in 100 starts.
Other Rolling Thunder News
The Rolling Thunder Modifieds will compete for the first time ever in four different states, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee and South Carolina, in the same year during 2011. RTM is a regional modified racing tour which competes on asphalt oval tracks in this region. The cars are IMCA-type Modifieds which use 8” Hoosier racing tires.
Key Motorsports Sponsor DrawTite
Folks know I’m one for helping out the little guys in NA$CAR. Key Motorsports got a sponsor, DrawTite, and needs fans to help them out by going to their sponsor’s web site just to visit. By generating web hits, it’ll show the sponsor that there is a place for them in NA$CAR and with Key Motorsports. And no, I don’t get anything from DrawTite or from Key Motorsports for doing this.