Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Life Goal: NASCAR

A few weeks ago, I was causally invited to join my friends at Watkins Glen.  I say casually because the exchange went something like this.  "Jeremy can't go to WG anymore.  Christine you should come." I thought about it for a minute and was replied  "ohhh I don't know." (it wasn't a payweek so money was a bit tight) but then I remembered my bucket list, and my new years resolution to tackle some of them, so a minute later I immediately agreed.

On Friday I met up with Corey & Gina at a park n ride along rt 88. We packed my stuff in their car and continued heading west.  When we arrived there was a concert going on - and it was a tad overwhelming to drive into the drunk fest that was already occurring.  Especially since we had not been participating. (yet)  After we set up our tents we spent the rest of the evening hanging out by the fire.

my borrowed tent.  Quite possibly the most hilarious and adorable small tent ever.
one of man lanterns to be lit 

On Saturday morning we went over to the main drag to take a look.  It was early - 8am so there were no crowds and it was an awesome time to get free junk from all of the sponsors.  I got my first look of the track before heading back for food.

There were time trials being done during the day, so we went to the closest grandstands and watched the last few go through.  We were able to climb to the top to get a good view of where we were in relation to everything else.  Since we had driven in at night, I hadn't realized we were inside the track.
view from the top.  Our campsite is also somewhere in this picture.
human bowling
After the time trail and walking the midway we went back to the campsite to get some shade, some booze and to place our bets for the upcoming Nationwide Race. We found seats at turn 1 to watch the race.

That night was quite the party.  We ate some delicious food ( and probably way too much food) some booze and hung out. Lanterns are a big thing at Watkins Glen and possibly at other NASCAR events, but this is my first I have no frame of reference.  

not aliens, just lanterns floating away
As our group began to dispurse, a few of us took a walk through the campground. Some of the RV's were quite impressive.  They're definitely worth more than my undergrad and graduate degrees.  A few RV's had also suddenly turned into bars, nightclubs and frat-like parties.  They were fun to visit, but I was definitely glad where we were sleeping was a bit further from these sites.
the most interesting man in the world and I

Around midnight I declared that I would go with the boys a 3am to reserve a spot on the Berm.  I also decided that I should take a nap.  It doesn't take a rocket scientist to predict what happened next.  When the guys came to wake me up I was a drunk cranky lady and refused to get up.

 But to be fair, I wasn't viewing the race from the Berm but rather from the Starting Line Grandstand. After a bit of a slow morning, we made our way to the seats.  We were on the top row- which had a fantastic view of the starting line with a few other view points throughout the course.  
Lap 80

This years race was Cheez It 355 which equaled to 90 laps on the track.   There were a few crashes, but thankfully no injuries.  In the end, Kyle Busch held onto his lead position and won. (unfortunately  I didn't bet on him. )
Kyle Busch celebrating in Victory Lane

The rest of the evening was relaxing, many people leave and some from our group did. The majority of our party stayed enjoying another beautiful night in Central NY.  Now that the race was over, we were allowed to walk on the track, our timing was on because when we got to the the track, Kyle Busch's truck was doing it's own victory lap.

Our homebase 
more lanterns

Monday morning we packed up, loaded the car and headed east.  It was an awesome weekend and I am so grateful for the invite. I can totally see why people love NASCAR and car racing.  I would 100% plan on going again.


  1. My father-in-law and brother-in-law want to take me to a race one of these days. Sometimes we'll go to the demo derby, but I've never been to Nascar or any other type of race like that.

    I also have a photo of me with the most interesting man in the world (also cardboard standee version).

    1. It was way more fun that I expected, I bet you'd have a good time. I almost tried to steal him, but saw that the "owners" were sitting right there, so I opted to take a photo instead

  2. Next on your bucket list, bring your car on that track. It will blow your mind (and pants).

    1. I'm not sure how fast I could get the corolla to go, but it does sound like a good idea !