Tag Archives: Xfinity Series

Most Un-NASCAR-Like Race at Watkins Glen the debrief

Greetings from the Glen! It’s NASCAR weekend and while the camp sites and the grand stands were all completely full (sold out some claimed) it was hard to believe that these were NASCAR races… Why? Because every driver, in each of the three series racing this weekend drove so professionally. It was a little hard to believe. I mean I don’t know much about NASCAR but if there’s one thing I’ve heard and seen talked about the series before is all it’s crashes. And there weren’t many. I saw a few nose to tail bumps, a couple of side to side contacts. A few spins. But that’s it. No major crashes. Hell, no minor crashes either. It was great to watch! Really spectacular racing with drivers in control of their cars ignoring the stereotypes. This was also the weekend that had the potential of seeing one of the first Monster Energy Cup events in the rain… and while the weather on Saturday had the potential for wet stuff, it really dissipated by Sunday and we had a picture perfect race.

I loved this weekend! I had such a blast.

First, huge thanks to RSI for the awesome station assignments again. I am super fortunate and blessed to get the views I was getting and for that I’m grateful!

Station 5A views, at Turn 5 exit of the Bus Stop

Station 2, at Turn 2 bottom of the Esses.

Both turns had a lot of potential for huge incidents. But instead we saw good clean racing. And that was neat!

I was super happy I got to hang out with some close friends over the weekend. Hit Watkins Glen downtown for some dinners. Enjoy the NASCAR atmosphere at the local pubs where drivers apparently served as bar tenders and free swag was given out. I was lucky to bring some of that swag home. That’s always a plus (not that I need any more swag).

Lucky for me, my buddy Chris from New Jersey came up to use my guest pass so I had an excuse to visit the infield for the first time (ever I think) during a NASCAR weekend. It was great to see sooo many people enjoying themselves. Checking out the displays, buying NASCAR gear, and having fun!

I loved the ambiance of it all.

And so another race in the books. This was probably the most clean NASCAR event I’ve ever worked. Which is a huge positive! I’m especially happy that for the Monster Energy Cup Series there was no Green/White/Checker routine everyone is so used to.

Thanks to NASCAR for putting on a great show. Thanks to Watkins Glen for being such an awesome facility. And thanks to RSI for making my volunteering enjoyable there!

See you next year.

Post Card from the Infield of NASCAR at Watkins Glen

So of all the years I’ve been doing NASCAR at Watkins Glen this was a first for me… Being able to check out the infield and all (some) of the insanity (cool shit!) it has to offer!

I was fortunate my friends from New Jersey came for the race, using one of my guest passes and purchasing a general admission ticket at the gate. It was interesting to hear their input on the very first NASCAR experience they had. But more importantly for me I got a chance to show them around a little bit during the downtime we had between qualifying and the race.

This was soooo cool!

I didn’t realize this before but NASCAR does an excellent job of keeping us (the marshals) away from their cars. This was a great opportunity to come very close to the replica/cutaways.

Not your typical Toyota Camry… it’s funny we’re used to call carbon fiber debris on track… with these cars its a bit more fiberglass instead, although 6 inch duct hoses seemed to be the culprit this time. And it’s nice to see them using some carbon fiber in the cabin finally… in an otherwise rudimentary/basic race car set up.

The State of New York / Tourism of NY sponsored the event.

Judging by the huge attendance, all grand stands were completely full, and thanks to the chamber of commerce for the excellent weather I’m know the State of New York got their money’s worth… I certainly did!

Post Card from NASCAR at Watkins Glen

Howdy Ya’ll!

A truly excellent weekend was spent at Watkins Glen for this year’s NASCAR – Monster Energy Cup, Xfinity Series and K&N Series East.

Here’s some pix:

Day 1 at Station 5A in Turn 5 – exit of the Bus Stop

Favorite car of the day: #6 Sunoco K&N Series East Toyota Camry

Runner up favorite car… this Toyopet sponsored old body that almost won the race.

Day 2 and 3, moved to Station 2 in Turn 2 start of the Esses.

Fantastic view, even closer to the track!

Preview of my next event in Atlantic City, New Jersey

Monster came thru big time, visiting the RSI campground and giving out tons of freebie drinks to the marshals. Thanks Monster!

I like how close US and Canada is at this event, with plenty of Canadian marshals (and many fans) represented, as well as Canadian anthem being sung before each of the races.

Had such a wonderful time working with Barb an awesome marshal.

Hey! I’ve seen this car before… had Photographer credentials.

This fella almost ran over my tent backing that thing up… Ugh!

Awesome sunny day for race day on Sunday! And it was one of the most un-NASCAR-like races I’ve ever seen at the Glen!

Even in town everyone was enjoying the NASCAR spirit… visited Bleachers for dinner whom were very #2 Brand K-ski themed, giving out free Miller Lite’s and I even got lucky with a giveaway hat.

More to come in a debrief…

NASCAR Spotter Guide for I<3NY 355 at Watkins Glen

I love spotter guides! I’ve posted many releases from Andy Blackmore for various sports car racing series he does so professionally. But a few recent trips to Formula E as a volunteer made me realize just how critical spotter guides are for someone that knows little about a particular series, and it really frustrated me that nothing was available on the official web site, and only a few options existed from amateurs created for previous season’s events.

NASCAR is one of those series I know little about… there’s a ton of cars in each of the Monster Energy and Xfinity Series I’m about to embark on this weekend, and I’m happy to say that NASCAR.com has a Paint Scheme Preview – Spotter Guide posted on their web site, here it is for those interested:  https://galleries.nascar.com/gallery/1356/paint-scheme-preview-watkins-glen#/0

Monster Energy Cup Series:

photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com

 

Xfinity Series:

photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com
photo credit: nascar.com

A few interesting observations… real NASCAR fans know the cars they follow because typically they have favorite drivers, and therefore know everything about him… I don’t. But I do enjoy checking out the cool looking paint jobs. My favorite of these series that were released yesterday is the SUNENERGY car… why? Because it reminds me a lot of the Mercedes-AMG GT3 in IMSA.

I’ll share some pix from the event soonly…

Marshaling NASCAR

Whenever I travel to volunteer overseas most people enquire not about our American sports car or open wheel racing series… but instead about NASCAR. More often than not people ask about how they too could come to America and work a NASCAR event… and often times I have to give them the bad news that marshals (volunteers like us) aren’t actually used by the series on ovals.

I have worked NASCAR events on a road course for many years, in fact NASCAR at Watkins Glen International is one of my favorite trips Upstate New York year after year. I even go to the Motorsport Safety Seminar put on by NASCAR and Race Services, Inc. at Watkins Glen to get properly trained to work NASCAR events.

So imagine my surprise when reviewing my calendar for events I wish to participate in this season (2017) the majority of the events I wish to work are NASCAR events. How in the world?

Will I actually work all those events I have pencilled in?

Probably not, but wouldn’t it be cool?

I have begun a habit of making notes (memo’s) of events I wish to do in order to inspire myself to follow through with those plans. So I’ll list the events below in order to reflect back at a later time to see how many of those races I actually participated in:

Completed Events:

April 1-2: Watkins Glen International – MSS (w/ RSI)

 May 19-21: Canadian Tire Motorsport Park – Pinty’s Series – Can Am 200 (w/ MMS)

 

Future Events:

June 9-11: Pocono Raceway – Monster Enegery / Xfinity / ARCA – Pocono 400 (w/ Team Pocono)

July 28-30: Pocono Raceway – Monster Energy / Camping World Trucks / ARCA – Pennsylvania 400 (w/ Team Pocono)

August 3-6: Watkins Glen International – Monster Energy / Xfinity / K&N Pro East – Zippo 355 (w/ RSI)

August 11-13: Mid Ohio Sports Car Course – Xfinity Series – Mid Ohio 200 (w/ Lake Erie Communicators)

September 1-3: Canadian Tire Motorsport Park – Camping World Trucks / Pinty’s Series – Chevrolet Silverado 250 (w/ MMS)

September 16: New Jersey Motorsports Park – K&N Pro East – Just Drive 125 (w/ NJMP)

 

I’m very excited about the possibility of any of these events… we’ll see how many I can actually participate in…!

Cheez-It 355 NASCAR at Watkins Glen New York Sprint Cup, Xfinity Series and K&N East Stock Cars

Fourth weekend in a row volunteering, the morning after arriving home from Europe I was on the road again driving Upstate New York to work NASCAR at Watkins Glen International.

Despite what people say about NASCAR, it is one of the most amazing racing series out there especially when they hit the track on a proper circuit (not a speedway). The sound of 40 cars going past you (just a few feet away) at full blast is incredible!

RSI was awesome with station assignments for me, letting me work Turn 5 at the entry to the Bus Stop the first day, Turn 10 the last turn before the Start/Finish on Saturday and Turn 1a after the Ninety and before the Esses on race day. I was blessed!

We had action, we had fun. It was awesome.

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watkins glen international nascar sprint cup xfinity series k&n east 4

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Race day we had full stoppage right in front of us due to a big incident in the Bus Stop.

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watkins glen international nascar sprint cup xfinity series k&n east 9

Can’t wait to go back to WGI again soon!

Post Card from NASCAR (Sprint, Xfinity & K&N East) at Watkins Glen International

Another fantastic weekend… my fourth in a row volunteering and first on American soil after three weeks in Europe.

Some say the two couldn’t be different. Yet to me the crowds of European spectators were quite similar to American ones even when the racing was completely different.

Watkins Glen is a perfect racetrack to host NASCAR and the fans never disappoint. The weather was perfect, the station assignments were great, and the company I was in was absolutely excellent!

I had such an awesome time!

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We were even lucky enough to deal with a few incidents!