In February of 2016, I was lucky enough to attend the Daytona 500. I’d been a fan of NASCAR for years, … Continue reading Daytona 500: The Rowdiest Party on Earth
Here are four reasons it may also be the ultimate American experience.
1. Booze is heritage, not just an after-effect
Many (if not most) sports associate themselves with alcohol and a rebellious nature, but NASCAR alone owes its very existence to moonshine and out-driving law enforcement. When NASCAR started in 1948, most of the drivers like “Reckless” Roy Hall and “Lightning” Lloyd Seay had learned how to drive fast outrunning IRS agents on southern backroads during prohibition. Race day at Daytona International Speedway reveals that alcohol is just as important to racing now as it was then. Not only are several of the race teams sponsored by beer and whiskey companies, but flags with beer logos flutter off of RVs parked on the infield like medieval banners marking dominions. Hours before the race, coolers and grills are hoisted onto the sheetmetal roofs of those RVs. Fans sit back in lawn chairs cracking cold ones and bantering back and forth until the race starts. If you walk by one of these RV parties wearing the t-shirt of the group’s favorite driver, it’s almost a guarantee that they’ll offer to toss a can down to you. Even if the beer isn’t “your brand” it’s in your best interest to take it. Continue reading “4 Reasons the Daytona 500 is the Ultimate American Experience”