Thursday, July 19, 2012

A Day At The Races

Last night we went to the Mini - Outlaw Racing Series at Millbrook Speedway in Statesville, North Carolina.  Notice I did not say "little"  They were all pull start engines, so the dads (pit crew) all had muscular arms.  Many of the drivers had affiliation with NASCAR.

The pic above is the "lift" they use to bring the "race car" to a workable level. 
Here you see the rear of the "race car".  The car is ready to roll.  The engine is the yellow object you see in front of the rear tire.  In the big Outlaw Series the "wing' on top of the car is adjusted for the precise amount down force to make the car handle properly for track conditions.  We are not sure if the mini's wings are for looks or for control. 
This is how the "race cars" entered the track.
The cars are flying around the track.
Track maintenance. Pickup, water tank. hoses. and gas operated pump. It works.
Some of the drivers are having a little pre-race fun. The little guy in orange on your left is four years old and drives # 5.  He won the race for his division.
The drivers ranged for age four to in there teens.  The guy in the middle of the pic in red is one of the older racers
Dale Earnhardt's two granddaughters were racing tonight.  I think they are between five and ten years old.  Here you see their pit area.  The girls ran mini cars  # 3 and #38.  They both came in second in their division.
You can see #1 and #2 on the race track now. These cars were the first two pics in the blog.
Close race.
This is Dale Earnhardt's daughter the mother of the two racers #3 and #38.  She is here with here son and second husband.
The pack is rounding turn number four.  The #5 car's drive is 4 years old.  He is in a pic before of the drivers playing, wearing the orange shirt. 

Below is a pic from the website of the Mini Outlaw racers.  This is a pic of our 4 year old that won his division.  He was just flying around the track under complete control.

The race officials are trying to line the very young racers in order.  After they are in order they take one lap and the green flag is waved, but they must stay in order.  We had at least 3 restarts to get this accomplished.  It is like herding cats. LOL
#38, Dale's, granddaughter, hits the "wall".  The row of tires you see moved around.  She was fine, but as you might guess a lot of people we fussing around her.  
Here they are checking things out.  Her dad is on the scene right way.  He does a lot of work on the track too and is always near by.  His job is getting kids out on the track, getting them started when they stall, and removing cars that wreck.
Dad and daughter leaving the track.  She was back out on the track for the offcial race on came in second.
They also had carts.  Weight is the  qualifying factor for this race.  We were told you could put rocks in to make you weigh more. LOL It was mainly older racers that participated in this race.

This "race car" spun out and landed in the mud.  "Emergency crews" were out and pushed him so the race could resume.
Here go the carts.  The racers are so close to the ground that they  fall out onto the ground to get out of their cars.  The races in my pics are the qualifying races.  All racers raced.  These races determined which order in the line-up they were in.  It got too dark for me to photograph the main events.  

Post race celebration was many of the young racers were running around hitting each other with swimming noodles have great fun.  

We had a great time.  Many of the spectators, mostly families of the racers, talked to us making us feel right at home.  The mom of the #55 car was really nice.  I asked her if the #55 meant anything, like Waltrip Racing.  She said her husband does work for Micky, but the kid just liked the number.  During the race #55, #38, and #21 crashed in front of the "grandstands" and mom and dad went running onto the track to make sure all was well.  When she returned I asked if NASCAR moms ran out onto the track during wrecks.  She got a laugh out of that one.

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