Tag Archive: daytona international speedway


Well, let’s see, where did we leave off?

It has been a long time since our last blog entry. On one hand a lot has happened to us, and on the other, we are right back where we started.

The end of our season cutting rumble strips on the side of the highway ended very strangely leaving us only three days to leave the job just north of Indianapolis, run back to Minneapolis to retrieve the motor home (we lived in hotels while working), and make it back to southern West Virginia by Thanksgiving.

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With record cold temperatures, fuel and air systems acted up on the RV, but it was nothing we couldn’t handle (sure did make the trip interesting though). We pulled into Pipestem, WV at Mark’s parents house just in time to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with the family.

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We stayed an extra week in southern WV to help Mark’s dad cut some firewood for the winter, then we were chased further south by snow and cold temperatures. We went back to our hometown of Lucia, NC where our long-time friends Mike and Susan showed us warmth and hospitality by insisting that we set up camp in their driveway.

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It was a nice visit with family and friends, but the cold temperatures and the dreary rainy conditions inspired us to build a motorcycle rack, get the bike out of storage, load up , and head further south.

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Florida was the only reasonable destination. With the high price of all campgrounds in the area (being peak season) we did little more than break even at our second adventure of working the three big Daytona events.

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The 24 hour Rolex, Daytona 500(speed week), and Bike Week. Second verse, same as the first…a wild 24 hour race, another rain delayed Daytona 500(complete with tornado warning), and a fun-filled bike week.

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The brutal winter of 2013/2014 didn’t completely spare Florida but is was a lot nicer than most of the rest of the country, and it did inspire Mike and Susan to travel down to the Sunshine State to enjoy some of the nicer weather for a week. Having the motorcycle with us made it nice for us to travel around and see family. We enjoyed a trip to Jacksonville to see Mark’s cousin and family, then to Ponce de Leon springs to eat pancakes with Tracy’s Aunt and Uncle then to Plant City to see Mark’s other cousin and check out the Strawberry Festival, back through Orlando to visit again with Tracy’s Aunt and Uncle, we even got to see Tracy’s sister while she and Steve were in town. So glad we got to, as we recently lost Steve to cancer.

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The motorcycle rack on the motor home did not make for comfortable travel, so when the weather broke, it was back north to the Carolina’s to trade out “the rack” for the trailer. Mark got a couple of weeks work in with a construction company, which earned us just enough money to pay for fuel back west.

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We had a couple of job offers that didn’t really pan out, but Lake Powell/Aramark made us good concrete offers that we could act on. We never heard a peep from the rumble strip company over the off-season but maybe they will contact us soon. In the mean time, we have enjoyed Mark’s parents coming to North Carolina to see us off, and have enjoyed visits with all of the family and friends, but the west is calling our name, so away we go again…

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Man, we are plum tuckered.  We’ve been to Daytona Bike Week in the past as spectators and participants but never tried to work 50 hours and enjoy all that Daytona has to offer bikers. We did enjoy a week off between the Daytona 500 and all the events that surround it and the beginning of Bike Week. This gave us the opportunity to move from Tom and Debbie’s house to a beautiful spot right on the speedway property. The situation relaxed dramatically after the 500 and with our temporary employers getting to know us a little better, they offered us a spot with full hookups and cable tv.

Our new location is a couple hundred yards from turn 1 which is basically in the pit area for the flat track. The flat track is one of the three main venues at the speedway.

Then there is the “souper”cross. Another big event where mother nature added an interesting twist. But we all know that real racers don’t let a little rain stop them.

The supercross and flat track events are great, but the big event is the Daytona 200.

As of today, at the end of the Daytona 200 superbike event, our temporary employment with International Speedway Corporation/Daytona International Speedway, has concluded. We’ve enjoyed our time here and it has been great to be a part of the 2 months of events that were held at the track. Bike Week is an event that spreads far beyond the track and this year due to it being postponed for 1 week, it also included college kids here on spring break. We will include a slide show to share our memories of our “Daytona Vacation”

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We know yesterdays post was a little bland. So lets review.

Out of the rat race but into the fun but busy life. That is our only excuse for short and to the point blog entries.

As we mentioned dining with friends, Jamie and Patsy, at a wonderful restaurant in Ponce Inlet on the inner coastal waterway named Down the Hatch. They treated us to a spectacular dinner of crab stuffed flounder and crab stuffed shrimp while we watched manatees and dolphins playing in the water. It was so nice to see friends from our old home town visiting us in our temporary new home town. These are some of  the nice benefits to our new work camping life style. Of course with camping, is the working, which is an adventure in itself.

For now, Daytona International Speedway, is our place of employ. I guess we’ve become carnies as this place is like a circus. With the 24 hr Rolex, Bud shootout, Slick mist 200, Qualifying for the 500, Gatorade duel, the Truck race, Nationwide series race, The Daytona 500, and the races during Bike Week the “work” is anything but. So far we have directed traffic, walking and driving, given directions/information, driven and been ambassadors on the fan shuttle, guarded gates for hours on end, inspected motorhomes for contraband, and all the while smiling and saying “Welcome to Daytona”. Then there’s the camping.

In our spare time we have ridden our Yamaha Zuma scooter (70 mpg) to the beautiful St Johns River with a quick stop to sneak into the pits at the Volusia County Speedway. Also we’ve had time with Aunt Lee and Uncle John (on Tracy’s side) where they treated us to another fabulous dinner at Ponce Inlet at the Lighthouse Landing restaurant where we enjoyed fresh oysters, grilled scallops, cod, Johns famous fried alligator tail and some conch chowder. All the while getting re-aquainted with Tracy’s cousin, Serena, and her absolutely adorable daughter, Sophia. Sophia amazed us all with her uncanny ability to lure wild squirrels with stale goldfish and get them to eat out of her hand. We can’t wait to get re-aquainted with Adam, Serena’s brother, and his son before we head out west.

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Stay tuned….