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Dan's 2004 Speedway Journal



U.S. Grand Prix ~ Pit Walkabout
Thursday June 17, 2004

I rode my motorcycle to the speedway this morning; they have a special parking area for bikes.

Like the first walkabout last year, thousands of fans showed up. Even though there was no cars on the track and this "event" (looking at teams get things organized in their garages) occurred in the morning during a weekday, the beer was flowing! The sunny warm weather was appreciated.

Still getting ready...

Oh those Ferrari fans...

There were live interviews during the pit walkabout that were televised on all of the speedway's giant tv screens. Mario Andretti had a long interview. I never could find where they were interviewing people from. So, after looking over pit lane, I headed over to the parking area by the infield museum to see what displays were setup.

Barber Dodge (racing school) had a display featuring some small formula cars and a racing Viper.

BMW had a gorgeous souvenir stand that featured a road car and last year's F1 car

Ever see those Segway People Movers? They have two wheels and somehow stay upright. Michelin had a large display with an F1 car and video games, but the highlight was they were offering free rides on a Segway. I rode it and its pretty neat. You have a throttle type thing on your left hand that you twist to turn the wheels left or right. You lean forward to go and lean back to stop and to reverse. Interesting...

Ferrari's souvenir stand was way outclassed by BMW

Honda simply displayed a line of their vehicles, including this new NSX

Some remote-control racing games were setup in the parking lot. Here are some little cars

They also had these larger cars and a huge track to run them on!

I grabbed some great deals on 3 shirts in the museum souvenir store, where they put the sale items. I got two $22 tee-shirts for $5 each and a $50 F1 polo shirt for $20!

I cruised Georgetown Road after I left the track. I stopped in all of the souvenir stands searching for a Renault shirt to go with my Fernando Alonso hat. I finally found one and it cost me $80! Still, the other style was $300!

I don't understand why there is a ton of Ferrari, Williams, McLaren, Jordon, Honda gear, but Renault gear is next to impossible to find - they are in 2nd place in the Constructor's Championship for cyring out loud! The Ferrari and BMW stuff sure looks awesome. Maybe if Williams hires Villeneuve next year, I can buy some of that BMW stuff. By the way, does anyone need some BAR shirts or hats from the Villeneuve era? :-)

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