Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Days of Thunder

I was super excited when at the last minute, DW ended up with some tickets to this year’s Daytona 500.

Not only did he have tickets, he had Pit Road passes, too! IMG_9510

We had the best time before the race parking on the in-field, walking on the track, and getting a close up look at the cars, drivers and even signing the finish line! IMG_9520IMG_9545



We happened to walk up right when the drivers were being dropped off from their golf carts for the driver introductions. IMG_9612IMG_9622IMG_9657We were literally within ten feet of them!IMG_9642IMG_9663 We watched as the first few kissed their wives/girlfriends/kids and jumped off their carts, and then a black suburban pulled up with flashing lights. We knew it had to be someone imporant – and out stepped a man in a white button-up shirt with a sweater vest. IMG_9631I didn’t know who he was, but he looked imporant and there were several people gathering around him getting pictures. I had gotten closer in case it was indeed someone “imporant” and looked back to see if DW & Adam knew the man. I heard them say “that’s Rick Hendricks” – I don’t know a lot about Nascar, but I know the name and know he’s a team owner and for sure a very “imporant” person in the business. I jumped across the lane, to get closer and yelled back to the crew to get my picture my him. When he’d gotten closer to where I was standing, I walked up and asked if I could get my picture with him. He gave me a big side hug and said, “sure thing- where we looking?” I pointed over to Lauren and we smiled for the picture.IMG_9702 I told him thank you and then said, “and Go Kyle!!” He gave me a funny look and said, “huh?” to which I smiled even bigger, gave him a big thumbs up and said louder, “Go Kyle!” He sort of laughed, said, “uh- okay” and kept walking. I looked up to see DW & Adam’s faces which looked like a mix between “WHAT did she just do?? I can’t believe she SAID THAT!!!” and “THAT was HILARIOUS” which I interpreted as they were so excited I’d talked to him and had my picture made with him. Then came the roaring laughter, and sadly, I realized I’d just made a big mistake when they simulatiously said, “he DOESN’T own Kyle’s team!!!” Oh the shame.

I felt terrible and hoped Mr. Hendricks didn’t think I was being disrespectful – I really thought he was Kyle’s team owner.

After the driver introductions, we walked back down behind the pits to get back to our seats, when we looked up and saw another important looking man signing autographs for a couple other people. DW & Adam pointed him out and said that he was Joe Gibbs, and that HE was Kyle’s owner. I did what anyone would do, I went up to get my picture made with him.IMG_9713 DW & I squeezed into a selfie shot and instead of hitting the button to take the picture, he accidently hit the button to turn off the camera. Mr. Gibbs was in a hurry to get to his box before the start of the race, so we just laughed and watched him go. The best we got was me waiting to talk to him… IMG_9711and the salvation tract he signed and gave us. I loved that. IMG_9725

We watched the race and of course my favorite part is having the headphones so you can listen to what the drivers are sayingIMG_9708

It was a super fun day and memories we’ll never forget--- even though I wish we could forget the whole “Go Kyle! part about meeting Mr. Hendricks. :)


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