AHHHH……I have bubbles!
Be Sure to watch the heartwarming video right after the daily blog!
So, you ask, what’s the easiest way to spot a Lap Puppy? The answer is simple, look for them on decal day. While veteran Lap Dogs have decal placement and installation down to a science, the Lap Puppies tend to have a considerably harder time getting their cars to look like the Veterans’ highway conquerors. Decal day is the warm up and reunion portion of the Tire Rack One Lap of America Presented by Grassroots Motorsports Magazine.
As the competitors arrive at The Tire Racks headquarters in South Bend Indiana they are directed to their stalls in the parking lot marked with their race numbers. They then go and register to sign some legal papers and pick up their welcome kit. Each team receives a suite of decals provided by the sponsors and directions on where they go. They are also issued two copies of the Official Route book, and while every team has a GPS unit, there still are places in this country that GPS does not register and therefore the route book becomes indispensable (we really DO end up in the middle of nowhere).
After the competitors place their vinyl’s, some more successfully than others, they drive their cars to the inspection area where we make sure that the car is in compliance. We check that all the sponsors are correctly represented, check the drivers helmet and driving suit to ensure that it is up to spec, examine the tires making sure they are branded from Tire Rack and finally brand the tires by spray-painting the manufacturer on the sidewall. The final step is to ensure that no competitor changes tires at any stage during the event.
Once all of the cars have completed the technical inspection process we hold the drivers meeting. The competitors are all informed and reminded of the strict policies the One Lap has toward reckless public driving and have a chance to hear from sponsors and past participants alike.
This year’s drivers meeting was an especially poignant one as it will be the first year that the man, the legend, and the founder of this lifestyle will not be attending any of the ceremonies due to declining health. As Brock Yates Jr. informed the packed tent of this his normally gruff exterior disappeared. On seeing this change the crowd could not contain their support for both Brock Sr. and Brock Jr. and he received a well-deserved, lengthy, standing ovation to thunderous applause.
Now with all the cars ready to begin the event tomorrow with the Wet Skid Pad Competition at The Tire Rack’s headquarters the competitors will head off. Some will get as much sleep as possible, some will relax in the bar with friends and pass out a little later, and yet others are still toiling on their cars in the never-ending quest for success in the One Lap of America. With 3 events tomorrow before a 452 mile transit to Mid-America Motorplex the Tire Rack One Lap of America Presented by Grassroots Motorsports Magazine is about to start in a full on sprint!