Saturday, April 12, 2014
Track number 12 out of 23 Sprint Cup tracks, more than half way to our goal. It may be taking much more time than we imagined that it would but once we made the decision that we no longer wanted to work them we then needed to purchase the tickets and be able to make it to the location which takes money.
We are just so happy because a few years back we would not have been able to afford being on the infield for most of these races but when the recession hit a few years ago they lowered the prices and it is now affordable for everyday folks like us.
We spent a few days checking out the merchandise trailers, got our pin, flag and sticker and we also got all sorts of freebies...love it!
We had so much fun, even with the many knuckleheads drinking way too much and being way too belligerent. The second night we were sitting in our chairs just enjoying the ambiance and waiting for the Nationwide race to begin when out of nowhere I got hit with a football right on the top of my head. Really took a huge jolt on my neck but I will survive. Jerry on the other hand went right over to our neighbors of 2 busloads of guys and expressed his concern and they all came over and apologized and they were more careful after that incident.
I was so tired and slept so hard that I did not hear any noise once my head hit the pillow at about 10:30pm. Jerry said the noise level was high until around midnight when it all just seemed to stop. I heard nothing and slept hard all night.
We love being on the infield at these races but we have had better spots for viewing. It makes it a bit different too since our roof has turned a bit spongy so Jerry does not go on top any more but the neighbors had offered their platform for him to enjoy the race. He did not take them up on their offer and instead we watched it on TV with the roar of the engines live and it was marvelous. Since the taping is on a 12 second delay it was strange to hear the roar start or stop and then see it on the screen but it was interesting and we enjoyed it.
Whenever we decide to be at one of the tracks we thoroughly look through the rules for what is allowed into the track. We were a bit concerned because absolutely no bikes, motorized or not are allowed in the infield, also golf carts, skates, and just about anything with wheels. So we prepared ourselves to either sign a waiver for us to confirm that we will not remove them from our carrier or store them in a designated area chosen by the track. Both of these arrangements have happened at other tracks but we were not prepared for what really did happen.
Going through all the inspections of dogs sniffing, mirrors and them entering our rigs we thought we were fine when they waved us on but then just as we were driving away they motioned for us to stop. Oh, no here we go! But instead of them saying anything about our bikes they said our new 6’ ladder that was bungeed on our RV ladder could not go into the infield. Oh, ok even though we had not seen any sort of rule stating this we just asked where we could keep it. They all replied they had no idea or that we could just leave it along the fence and hope for the best. REALLY?
Remember now we have worked these tracks and totally understand that is the reply we are to give when it is clearly posted in the rules but it was not so Jerry was a bit upset and got out and took off our ladder and then proceeded to chain it to the fence with our chain. One of the workers said the chain would probably be cut off and then about this time a supervisor David Sanders came onto the scene. By this time the line is going around us and Jerry is looking very upset chaining it to the fence. As for me, it was my turn to be reasonable since Jerry was not. So I explained to David Sanders that we were anal about looking into all the rules since we travel full time and have certain things with us that may not be allowed and that we went over all of them and did not see one that stated anything about a ladder. So he was attempting to contact someone and this was taking a long time.
First let me back up a moment to when we first arrived and why by now we were a bit agitated. We always keep our tickets at Will Call and were informed that we could pick them up at Gate 39A, we also know this since we have worked plenty of these tracks before and know that once the event begins that they send them to the gate you are to go into for camping. So as instructed by phone we showed up at Gate 39A but were told we could not even turn into the area and that we are to go into Gate 40. Traffic was so heavy we were unable to turn back to Gate 40 and had to go the long way around to get back to Gate 40 where our tickets unfortunately were not there. The guy on the gate told us to turn around and go to Gate 39A which is a direct gate right into the tunnel and if they are not there we would need to go to the Will Call Ticket Office. We turned around and went back to Gate 39A where we were then instructed that if we were not associated with NASCAR that we were at the wrong gate and I then asked him to humor me and to please look to see if our tickets were there and lo and behold they were, but instead of them allowing us to enter into the same tunnel but from a different direction they asked us to turn around and go back to Gate 40…OMG!
Now back to finally having our tickets and being in line, oh by the way they forgot to put our Pit Passes in our package so after making a few calls we were instructed we would need to go to Will Call and they would handle it. But first since we were already in line we were going to get into the infield and set up and then walk back to Will Call but in the meantime we needed to wait for some decision on our ladder.
David Sanders finally came to us and asked what site we were in and that he would come there and let us know what the final decision would be about our ladder and I then made him aware of our Pit Passes and he told us that he would escort us back to Will Call to get them when he came to our site. A short time later while we were still setting up he showed up with our Pit Passes and asked for the key to the lock for our ladder. He explained that apparently a few years prior some fool fell off their own ladder on the infield and sued the track and won so they put it in the rules but then this year they omitted to put it in the rules so he apologized and told us if we needed anything to let him know. He also stopped by several times over the weekend to see if we needed anything and of course we did not. We really feel that he went above and beyond his call of duty and helped to make our stay memorable and we surely do appreciate it.
The race was a good one and then we stayed up until almost 1am watching the transporters leave the track and then sleep was difficult due to the loud noises throughout the night. Not just partiers but the track people cleaning up and more transporters leaving honking and hollering. Life at a NASCAR event is not always fun but somebody’s got to do it and it might as well be us.
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