Good food, good beer, nice people, amazing seats and a great race.  What more could I ask for? 🙂

J and I trekked to Bristol, TN this past weekend to take in a Nascar race.  I know what you’re thinking – cars turning left for 400 miles?  Why is that fun? Well, Nascar is an experience all in itself.  It’s a completely different thing from attending a football or baseball game. 

Everyone is so friendly.  And there are tons of people.  I believe Bristol – one of the smallest tracks in the circuit – holds 165,000 people – all there to root for their driver, and to have a good time.

We typically try to get to the track about 3-4 hours before race time, to get in some good tailgating. 🙂

This Sunday’s race was at 1:00, so we got to the track around 9:00, set up our little tailgating area, grabbed a beer, and lit the grill.  Since it was early we decided to go with breakfast – eggs and sausage.  It was delicious! 

We headed into the race around noon, stopped at a couple of haulers (where they sell merchandise) and picked me up a trackpass (so I could hear the announcers and follow along easier).  Oh, and, of course, we headed in with our coolers full of beer.  Yep, that’s right – Nascar you can BYOB!  Cans only, coolers can’t exceed a certain size.  But how great is that?  Also, if you’d like, you can bring in your own food.  Sandwiches, chips, pretzels, popcorn.  Whatever you want!  Gotta love it!

And, even if you don’t bring your own beer, you can buy it inside for about $2.00 a can.  None of the $8-10 drafts you find at football games.

We had amazing seats to this one – a gift from my dad and his wife.  I’m going to be so spoiled for every other race we go to.  They were high up and you could see everything!  They were perfect!

So the race lasts usually around 4 hours.  Sometimes it could be a bit longer for a lot of cautions, or any rain delays.  If it’s all/mostly green flag racing, it may even go shorter (but the race isn’t that exciting without the great wrecks). 🙂

After the race we hung around the track for about an hour or so longer.  It takes a while to get the lots emptied out, and we see no point in sitting in our car (still in the parking area) when we could have another beer or two, and grill again.  So we grilled some marinated pork chops and had some macaroni salad we got at the local grocery store. 

We drove back on Monday.  It only took about 6 hours.  Not a bad drive at all.  The biggest downside to going to races… hotel rooms are hard to come by and extremely expensive.  The second you know you’re going to one is when you need to book a room.  If you know someone in the area, hit them up for a spare bed or floor to crash on.

I’m really looking forward to Richmond.  It’s our anniversary so we plan to spend an extra day in the city – maybe hitting up a museum or two and having a nice dinner out.  We’re also hoping to add a few more to our group.  Anyone interested? ;p