My morning at the racetrack in Sonoma (formerly known as Infineon Raceway) started with a crack. Not the crack of dawn, but the butt crack of some photographer loading himself into the media shuttle van. That was a sight I really could have done without.
To make it worse, this guy and his wife (I’m assuming) spent the entirety of our ride down to the media center complaining about how they had to go through track security the day before and it was SO HORRIBLE because they needed to look inside their bags. I’ve gone through that same process and it is by no means the long, arduous, intrusive & annoying process they made it out to be. It was so annoying. Then they starting saying some racially inappropriate things about how they’d know if a person of a certain ethnic background put stuff in their bags. I sincerely wanted to yell that them because they’re truly idiots. I’m glad they’re totally open to sacrificing everyone’s safety so that they don’t have to be stopped for 5 seconds to have their bags checked. Ugh. Stop.
I’m always intrigued by people watching at IndyCar races. The crowds are slightly different than the NASCAR races. It’s not HUGELY different as some people might think, there’s definitely fan base overlap, but it’s different enough to be distinctive. For example, you see a lot more dudes in skinny jeans sporting fauxhawks. There are also more women dressed like they’re going to a polo match or a casual outdoor wedding. I saw a dude wearing bright orange suede moccasins. Not even kidding.
While I was charging my cellphone using the free charging station Verizon had setup in the garage — a truly WONDERFUL service I must say, although they could stand to add two more iPhone slots — I saw a group of guys that looked like they were going on a boating trip with the Kennedy family in Martha’s Vineyard. I don’t know why that fascinates me so much.
When I was on line to get a hot chocolate (which was awesome btw) there was this older man behind me who was VERY chatty. He told me about how he was there with his kids, and his son had gone through the Cadillac tent three times to get free t-shirts, using a different email address each time. He talked about how the crowds had been really light the previous two days, so much so that they could go up and talk to drivers in the garage. I asked if he came out for the NASCAR race and I could tell that he was trying to hold back a look of disgust. He said he liked sports cars and open wheel racing, not “those big things,” whatever that means.
My favorite thing of the day was JR Hildebrand’s firesuit. It was made to match his car’s 49ers paint scheme and so he walked around looking like a football player wearing the skinniest uniform you’ve ever seen. It was cute.
Not much else to report other than the fact that I’m SERIOUSLY sad I never ran into Arie Luyendyk Jr., the last dude to be rejected by Emily Maynard on the last season of “The Bachelorette.” I know there are some ladies out there that would have enjoyed a photo of him.
I didn’t stay for the entire race but I was really sad to hear about Ryan Hunter-Reay’s troubles. I wanted him to win and make the whole Championship picture more interesting but we’ll see what happens next. Congrats to Ryan Briscoe though. I’m sure it felt like forever since he’d last won one. He’s a nice guy so that was great to see.