Thursday, August 19, 2010

Go to Bristol!

There is a place on the Tennessee - Virginia border that is about the only place in the world where you can see awesome racing while sitting in a football stadium setting.  I’m talking about Bristol Motor Speedway, obviously.  Bristol is absolutely awesome, and for years you couldn’t get a ticket there, because they were all sold out.  Every race, every year.  This year, you could have a chance to go to what I consider one of the greatest tracks on the NASCAR circuit.

If you’ve never been to Bristol, I’d encourage you to go, if there is any way at all you can make it there.  I was lucky enough to get to go to the night race there a couple of years ago, and it was one of the greatest racing experiences I’ve ever had.

The track itself is spectacular.  It’s banking looks very intimidating, and the speeds the cars drive around the track look pretty much impossible.  You quickly understand why the  best drivers in the world race at this track, because very few other folks could last a lap here.

The seating, as I said before, is like a giant football stadium.  With 160,000 seats, it’s simply about the largest sporting event I have ever seen, and if you go, you will probably feel much the same way.  The racing is intense.  There is no drafting at Bristol, such as would happen at Talladega or Daytona.  Bristol is completely at the other end of the spectrum from those storied tracks.  If you watch a Bristol race, you’re watching what I consider to be stock car racing at its best.  These guys will beat and bang all day, rub and bump.  That’s how racing was born, and as far as I’m concerned, that’s how racing is meant to be.  If I could drive my truck around any track that NASCAR races on, Bristol would be my first choice.  I have a feeling that my Toyota Tacoma would probably roll over going through the turns though.

Bristol, at night, is simply spectacular.  If you live within 500, or maybe even 1000 miles, I’d advise you to get your derriere to the track this weekend.  I guarantee you won’t be sorry.

Bristol has been around for a long time.  It’s short track racing at its best.  It probably has been, and always will be, with apologies to Martinsville and Richmond.  The only thing missing for Bristol is the famous hot dogs at Martinsville.  You can buy those, by the way, at least the actual wieners.  Just look at your local grocer and specify pink.  Mention Jesse.  That will do it.

I’ve only been to Bristol once, but as far as I can see, there’s not a bad seat in the house.  That’s pretty impressive, considering that there are 160,000 seats there.  It’s a stadium, and you can see all from anywhere you sit, as far as I’ve been able to tell.

Bristol, Tennessee is almost middle America, but not quite.  Like I said before, it’s on the Tennessee border with Virginia, though it’s not that far from places like Cincinnati, Columbus, Atlanta, Charlotte, even Washington, DC.  You can easily get there in less than a day from all those places.

Bristol is worth every penny, as far as I’m concerned.  If you have to opportunity, get to it.  Do it.  You really won’t be sorry.

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