Day 2 at NASCAR consisted of going to Joe Gibbs Racing Shop. The ladies and myself assembled in the Lobby of the Hyatt House before we loaded onto our luxury shuttle bus. Our day would consist of several related adventures, starting with Fan Fest. Fan Fast was a pep rally of sorts. The best way for me to describe it would be all of the sponsors under the Toyota Racing umbrella coming together to show their appreciation to all of the fans. During Fan Fest, we got to meet with representatives of FedEx, HomeDepot, Chick Fillet, and DNP to name a few.
After the Fan Fest, we got to go through the private entrance of the Joe Gibbs Racing Shop into the conference hall, where we got to meet with Coach Joe Gibbs himself. During our time with the coach, he discussed how he got into racing, the role his wife played, and the importance of the “average joe”, whom is often neglected. After Joe Gibbs finished speaking, we got to hear from his son J.D. Gibbs, head of Social Media, Bryan W. Cook.
Bubba Wallace who is the youngest winner, and first African American, to win in K&N Series history was on hand to speak with the Toyota Women. Bubba signed with Joe Gibbs Racing back in 2009, and has been deemed one of the race car drivers to look out for under the age of 25.
“The racing demographic and NFL demographic are the same with 40% women” -Joe Gibbs
After listening to the key players speak, we got to take a private tour of the Joe Gibbs Racing Garage. This was the very first time I had ever come in contact with a race car! It was everything I expected and more. I mean… I have been in auto garages before… but this was luxury all the way. Everything was so pristine and clean. While touring, I wondered how they got any work done without messing up their outfits, loll. I suspect they have a separate space to work on cars aside from the “show room”, lolll.
After we left the cleanest auto garage I have ever seen… we bumped into Mary Lou Hamlin, mother of Denny Hamlin.
She asked us about our experiences so far, and of course, gushed over her son. She was really nice, and based on that experience I made sure I rooted for her son during the race that took place a few house later. After talking with Momma Lou, we went out for lunch, then got to wonder around Charlotte for a few hours before heading for the race.
The device I am holding my hand above allows us to listen to what the drivers are saying inside their vehicles. I brought along my Velodyne Earphones to get the best sound quality! Sooooo of course one of the Toyota Cars won the race that evening, so the Toyota Women got the “RARE” opportunity to be escorted to the Winner’s Circle.
Inside of the winner’s circle it was mayhem! Everyone was present from the Joe Gibb’s racing team, including Joe Gibb’s himself. We got to come inside the restricted area, and take pictures with the winning driver, Joey Logano.
Below are the rest of the pictures… I hope that you enjoy