Our overland editor experiences a various sort of on-the-road campsite, with an chance to glamp with M&M’s Racing in the infield of a NASCAR race.
My pal Nick and I got an invite to come out and glamp on the infield of Kentucky Speedway for the duration of the significant NASCAR race weekend.
M&M’s sponsored the encounter, and the complete three-day race weekend revolved about all factors M&M’s Racing. With about 40 campers, we have been a speck in the 100,000-plus-robust attendance at the track more than the weekend.
I invest most of my time functioning in the overlanding neighborhood. I mountain bike and camp in the forests and mountains. And occasionally I get with each other with likeminded people at events like the Overland Expo.
But glamping at a NASCAR race is way outdoors my wheelhouse. There’s nothing at all like a new encounter to preserve life lively, so when I got the invite, I gave them an emphatic, “Heck yeah!”
This was the 1st time an organized glamping encounter has occurred at a NASCAR race. But individuals have been camping at these races considering that the starting. Camping and RV culture at NASCAR races is as vital as the race itself. Though the masses collect for the higher-speed vehicles driving in a significant circle, the campgrounds are exactly where a lot of the action occurs.
Having Into Gear
I quickly rolled out of bed thanks to a partially deflated air mattress. But finding up was difficult mainly because it was currently hot and humid, and the low-cost beer and shots from the evening ahead of didn’t support with hydration.
The second morning of my three-day glamping encounter was going to be challenging. But there was as well a lot to see and do to keep in bed. Besides, the tent was beginning to turn into an oven as the sun beat down on the canvas walls.
Step a single: Motivate for a run.
Yes, I know. NASCAR race, 90 degrees, and 60-% humidity do not add up to an optimal operating atmosphere. But I necessary to get in the mileage. And in addition to, there’s no far better way to scope out all the action all through the campgrounds surrounding the track.
I got lots of waves and hellos, but also much more confused appears than I could count. Fitness activities didn’t look higher on anyone’s list on a hot, muggy raceday morning.
Cleaned Up, Fueled Up
Back in our fenced-in oasis inside the racetrack, I was dripping with sweat. I necessary a shower, hydration, and fuel. I dug a water bottle out of the icy cooler and grabbed the M&M’s-branded bathrobe that was supplied. (It was a bit see-via, so some campers got to see much more of me than they could have wanted.)
Our luxury shower and bathroom trailers have been well-known to not only rinse off the copious volumes of sweat every single day but mainly because they have been a single of the couple of air-conditioned regions to hide from the heat.
After in fresh garments, which I was currently sweating out once more, I dug into the breakfast buffet in the shade of the onsite hospitality RV. I grabbed some grub and headed up to the rooftop deck on the RV, as it was a fantastic perch to take in the sights and sounds of all that was taking place at the racetrack.
Grabbing a handful of snack-size M&M’s packets and a further ice-cold water, I headed out into the infield of the track with my camera. On race weekend, there’s lots of action taking place all day and all evening. Through the day, the garages are buzzing with activity as the race teams prepare for the significant evening race.
Watching these nicely-oiled teams dial in these objective-constructed go-quickly machines is a factor of beauty. Their garages are immaculately clean and organized, and packed with the most current tools and technologies.
NASCAR tech inspection is a secret art that is usually altering. The vehicles are really place into a dark booth with inspectors at a single point in the approach, presumably to be laser-scanned. Adhering to the race vehicle specification guidelines is taken quite seriously. Any small benefit can imply a significant distinction on the track.
I heard a number of occasions all through the weekend, “If you are not cheating, you are not winning.” Appears a bit odd to me, but it all comes down to exploiting just about every loophole in just about every rule in order to get a competitive benefit and attract much more sponsors to raise much more cash. It requires significant cash to race, and it requires crazy cash to be competitive.
Listen and Study
Immediately after a hearty lunch back at camp and, of course, a couple of much more handfuls of M&M’s to preserve the power levels up, I settled into a Skittles-colored plastic lawn chair in the shade of a enormous inflatable dome that dominated the center of the glampground. Most of the afternoon was spent soaking in stories and words of wisdom from NASCAR royalty.
All the campers got to hear stories about racing, life, and fame from NASCAR legend Kyle Petty, the M&M’s Racing group owner Joe Gibbs, and the M&M’s driver Kyle Busch and his wife. This sort of access to NASCAR’s luminaries is a uncommon occasion and a massive perk for the M&M’s Glampground campers. Signed merchandise and selfies have been hot commodities!
The engines fire up as the sun sets behind the enormous grandstands. As anticipated, the vehicles go actually quickly, only turning left as they preserve going about and about the 1.five-mile D-shaped track.
They do not do this constantly, even though, as there are “stages” in the race. Generally, they’re industrial breaks for the Television audience, which also gets the vehicles bunched back up for much more higher-octane, rubbin’-is-racin’ action.
The Saturday evening NASCAR Cup race is the significant show, with 30-plus vehicles on the track and about 100,000 individuals in attendance. It is a 400-mile race. Impressively, the pro drivers and teams kept factors fairly tidy with out any significant mishaps, crashes, or brawls.
The truck race on Thursday and the Xfinity race on Friday are warmups to the significant show Saturday, and they’re packed with egos, attitudes, and crashes. With shorter races, I’d hugely recommend watching the early action, as the crashes are actually a thing to behold up close and private.
Obtaining a excellent spot to watch the races is straightforward to do as a glamper, as there are lots of alternatives on give. The RV platform at camp puts you suitable in the middle of the action. The fan zone along the fence in pit row gets you up close to the teams. And the Bluegrass Club seating — which is incorporated in the encounter — is a prime location dead center in the stands, at the great height to see the complete track.
After the winner spins some donuts and requires a victory lap with his pit crew hanging off the racecar, it is time to genuinely reduce loose. Certain, several at the race have been drinking for a couple of days now, at all hours of the day. But factors actually get amped up just after the race.
A couple of adult beverages are a fantastic way to come down off the highs from race gas fumes in the air and the heart-pumping scream of tuned V8s whipping about the track at more than 150 mph.
There are lots of alternatives to get an adult beverage at the track. My preferred imbibement of craft beer is a scarce commodity, nonetheless.
The two most entertaining alternatives I discovered at the track are Fireball Alley and Turn two Tavern. Fireball Alley is a fan zone sponsored by Fireball Whiskey with low-cost booze, lots of cornhole games, and a young crowd. It is a fantastic spot to watch the race and get saucy.
Turn two Tavern is really a fan bar, which indicates they cannot sell alcohol but can take donations. It is positioned on the infield of the track, at turn two. It is a actually entertaining scene with fantastic music and straightforward stumbling distance back to the glampground.
NASCAR’s Glamping Future
I’d inform you to sign up now for the subsequent M&M’s NASCAR Glamping encounter at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 17, but it sold out in a matter of hours a couple of months ago. It is also double the price tag of the Kentucky Speedway Glamping system. On the other hand, it is nevertheless an astounding worth at $500 per particular person.
No much more NASCAR Glamping experiences are on the calendar just but. But with the achievement of this 1st system, we’re certain to see much more possibilities like this quickly.
I normally invest my time camping off the beaten track, not glamping on the racetrack. NASCAR could not be my preferred sort of motor racing, and I could not relate quite nicely to a vast majority of NASCAR fans. But I do appreciate new experiences, motor racing, and friendly, passionate individuals. Glamping at a NASCAR race checks all these boxes, and the M&M’s Glampground took that encounter to exponential heights.