So off we went to Martinsville at 7:30 on Sunday morning. As we were driving to Martinsville, which is a little over an hour south of Roanoke, we could tell that about 75% of everyone else on the road was headed to the same destination, just by their fan gear and car decals. We could tell that we were getting close when we saw two state police cars every 100 yards and people standing in front of their house or place of business with signs offering race parking for $10 - $20. Since we got there plenty early, we opted for the free parking right outside of the track.
We had a good amount of time to kill before the race actually started, so we walked outside of the track looking at all of the souvenir vendors and exhibits. Andrew got a Tony Stewart hat and I got a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series t-shirt. We also picked up some free samples from some of the exhibits. Then we went and stood behind the people who are on TV before the race starts. We tried to see ourselves on TV but I don't think the camera ever pointed in our direction.
So after walking around for a while, we were getting a little cold, seeing as how it was only 40 degrees and not sunny (we were also mildly unprepared for how cold it was). So we went and sat in the warm car, ate some snacks, and waited until it was closer to racing time. Once we had thawed out, we made our way to the track.
The cars were all lined up ready to go. Tony Stewart in the #14 car (Andrew's favorite driver) was starting 5th.
After sitting for a while on cold metal seats in the on-and-off drizzle (I think I saw a few snowflakes, too) waiting for the track to dry, I needed to move around. So we decided to go get some Famous Martinsville Speedway Hot Dogs. They really are famous, and I'm pretty sure it's just because they are red. They are only $2, too! You can read more about them in an interview with The Famous Martinsville Speedway Hot Dog.
Me enjoying my hot dog. It was yummy!
After we had eaten our hot dogs, we went back and saw that they were still drying the track with their jet engine dryers (below). As you can see, they weren't really making much progress and the continued drizzle wasn't helping their efforts.
After a little while, the dryers finally turned off as a signal that they had given up the fight against the impending storm. The race would be delayed until Monday at noon, and unfortunately we knew we wouldn't be able to come. You can imagine just how sad and disappointed we were. Just in case you can't, here's how sad we were:
Talk about a tease! We got to experience everything that has to do with NASCAR, except for the actual racing. Talking on the way home, Andrew and I agreed that, although we didn't get to see any racing, we still had a lot of fun. And we also agreed that we would absolutely have to go to the October race in Martinsville, even if we have to actually pay for our tickets.
To help warm our bodies and spirits, I made a yummy "Tony Stewart Chicken Pot Pie" for dinner. Those are supposed to be cars, not dinosaurs.
So, don't worry...we are bound and determined to experience an actual NASCAR race eventually. But for now, we must wait and just watch it on TV.