Home tracks tend to hold sentimental memories, fierce loyalty, and a feeling of comfort. Pocono International Raceway is that place for me.
Pocono was the first track I attended when I re-upped my fandom in 2007.
Pocono was the first track to issue me media credentials.
And Pocono is where I now work three major race weekends a year – and support races – as media.
To use superlatives about the track I love would fall far short of the actual wonderfulness it is.
So, to help you understand why Pocono Raceway means so much to me, why I take the journey to this unique, family-owned and operated track, camp there, and never cease to be awed by the views, experiences, and time there, please… look!
My first sight to let me know… we have arrived!
My husband and our friend Jon work the grandstands at the camp. We start and end each day together at the campsite!
First stop Friday morning is to get the all-important credentials! It never gets old, I always feel so lucky and blessed to have earned my creds from PIR!
I’ve made dear friends in the media center over the years. Skip Clayton told me to follow him for his appointment with none other than NASCAR legend Donnie Allison. Once Skip was finished with his interview, I dove in and did an impromptu one that lasted nearly 25 minutes! Allison was wonderful, spoke his mind like you’d imagine, and agreed to come on Drafting the Circuits! It was a great first day!
To top off a great first day, Doc Rose Mattioli and her two beautiful daughters made and served us dinner in the media center. It was an Italian feast that had been prepared for three days prior to the event. I have, honest to goodness, never tasted a more delicious, authentically Italian meal in all of my life. And these intrinsically beautiful and outwardly gorgeous women served it to us in red aprons and a genuinely warm and welcoming smile. They even gave out the recipe cards for each dish!
Although NASCAR is our bread and butter at Drafting the Circuits, I adore covering ARCA. We have had numerous drivers from the series on our show and they are wonderful people to talk to and learn from constantly.
From left to right: Frank Kimmel, Justin Allison, Nick Igdalsky, Steve Fox, and Mason Mitchell.
And then, of course, there is the NASCAR Sprint Cup. That’s what y’all have been waiting for all along. These pics are from pre-race on Sunday, June 8th, I hope you enjoy!
Caught up with No. 1 team spotter Lorin Ranier, a recent guest on Drafting the Circuits radio, early Sunday morning. I also saw Alex Bowman, Ryan Truex, and The Cat in the Hat Jack Roush in the garage area. I captured quick shots of Tony “Smoke” Stewart on the grid and a cowboy-hatted Austin Dillon hopping out of his transport.
Opening ceremonies were so moving this year as they are every year. USAF Staff Sgt Naomi Scott’s rendition of the National Anthem was sung with such passion, patriotism, and emotion that it would have been enough to bring me to tears. But add to that the stirring flyover, firecrackers ‘bursting in air’, the enormous flag Pocono has majestically flying over its track, and the absolute silence of the audience out of respect and revelry, and I was saluting with tears streaming down my face.
Pocono wows me every time I come to her triangular track. If you’ve never been, have pre-conceived notions of the track that may or may not be true, I invite you to try my Pocono Raceway.
And, please stay tuned for an all-Dale Earnhardt Jr. edition of the Pocono Pictorial coming out very soon!