Have you ever dreamt of rubbing shoulders with celebrities? Or rather, rubbing fenders in this instance?
Lucky for you, NASCAR brings in so many different individuals from your typical fans to the President of the United States, and anyone in-between. Any race you go to you can find just about someone who will have cameras, microphones, and plenty of attention around them. Drivers are the star of the show, but those watching those stars are stars themselves.
So, how can you meet them all? Here’s your how-to guide!
The best place to start
Starting small and out of your wallet, there are plenty of ways fans can get close to the drivers and others within the NASCAR realm. As the world moves on from COVID-19 pandemic measures, this includes driver meet-ups outside the track usually several hours before the start of a race.
You can find Ford drivers at the Ford tents, Chevy drivers at the Chevy tents, Toyota drivers at the Toyota tents, and drivers with their sponsor set-ups outside the track too. They will do anything from a meet and greet to speaking with a large group of their fans. Usually, no ticket is required for any of them – not even a race ticket for the fan zones!
These driver appearances happen at every track, every weekend. Be sure to check your favorite driver’s social media accounts along with the track social media accounts to see which drivers you can meet where before the start of the race!
Catching up in the heat of the action
This is unfortunately when there can be some barriers for some people with meeting drivers and celebrities. This involves paying to get access to the infield pre-race to walk the grid and see everybody preparing for the race just before the green flag flies.
Getting a pit pass can get you the opportunity to go up to certain drivers and ask for an autograph or a good luck picture before the race. You could also see FOX Sports or NBC doing their pre-race show on pit road and talk to the likes of Clint Bowyer, Chris Meyers, Jeff Burton, or Dale Earnhardt Jr – even if they have choice words to say.
Finally, there is usually a specially reserved spot for celebrities who are giving the command to start engines or be the honorary pace car driver. They can usually be found hanging out with some drivers or also learning how to drive the car or properly saying “Drivers, start your engines!” Get a golden opportunity, and you just might get a picture with both the driver and their celebrity friends.
And who knows, at a lower series race you just might find a Cup driver watching along in the seat next to you. Noah Gragson was the latest to find some fanfare just this weekend at Martinsville.
Camp it out with the drivers!
Thirdly, spending the entire weekend at the track is bound to get you some sort of contact with a driver or celebrity. Specifically, camping out in an RV or trailer in the infield or outside the track is a great way to not only connect with drivers but fill your life with NASCAR nonstop for the whole weekend.
Most NASCAR drivers from all three series usually stay the weekend camped out in their own campers alongside the fans. At some tracks like Talladega Superspeedway, it’s just part of the culture where drivers interact and is part of the experience in the infield.
While the driver campers are usually in a different area for safety and privacy purposes, they will usually venture outside and even surprise some fans along the way throughout the weekend.
While the best chance to meet the drivers and even have some more personalized interactions with them, it is usually the most expensive. It’s not the most feasible option for everyone, but it doesn’t mean anyone shouldn’t experience it at least once!
Hopefully, this will help you fulfill all your dreams of meeting your favorite driver and/or your favorite celebrity at your next NASCAR event.