One of my absolute favorite things about NASCAR is its adherence to tradition, so I was thrilled to win two tickets to the Bojangles Southern 500 via a Twitter contest (thank you, STP Racing!). Besides the fact that I never win anything ever, I was excited to witness the return to the traditional Darlington/Labor Day slot. It was also my roommate’s first race ever. My roommate is more into Vogue and weddings and fashion, so I was hesitant to bring her, but she actually loved it.
I loved all the throwback schemes, but my favorite was probably Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.’s just for how brilliant the blue was on the track under the lights. A sentimental favorite was Mike Bliss’ Harry Gant theme, and Clint Bowyer’s hand-painted car gets an A for effort from me (we cringed every time the car went by, hoping it didn’t have any damage).
There was nothing fancy about this race — no pit passes, no sitting atop the pit box, no driver sightings, no photo ops, and backstretch seating — but it’s always invigorating to go to a race with someone who’s never been, and watching my roommate be thrilled by the speed and get goosebumps from the sound really reminded me why I love this sport in the first place.