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Carol’s Corner: Road Atlanta: 40 Years and Counting!

Carol’s Corner:  Road Atlanta:  40 Years and Counting!

I am honored to begin archiving over 40 years of racing at Road Atlanta.  Wow!  What a remarkable treasure trove of history … all of the different series who have raced here and the racing icons who have driven our track and our loyal fans who have been with us through it all!

It’s ironic that this endeavor coincides with my 40th high school reunion in Toledo, Ohio in a couple of weeks.  How I’ve come full circle.  I worked at DeVilbiss Company for almost 30 years, which was owned at that time by Champion Spark Plug.  I was a secretary in the Automotive Refinish division and we sold spray guns and spray booths to race teams all over the country!

I can’t believe that the “things” near and dear to me in the 70’s are now considered “vintage”!  When I think about all the changes in technology since my early years as a secretary … for example, electric typewriters (if you were high enough up the ladder to get one) with carbon paper, boy you didn’t want to make mistakes as you had to erase every copy and brush it off (that was even before white-out!).  The computers were in their infant stages and most of the automotive shops we dealt with in those years didn’t even have faxes (or know what faxes were), let alone what the future would hold with internet websites, e-mail and social media of today.

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Evelyne Clarke of WERA talks Road Atlanta Part 1

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24 Heures du Mans - From a Road Atlanta Perspective

Megan ErnstLe Mans Blog

Thursday, June 9, 2011

As a first timer at the 24 Heures du Mans, I had a laundry list of places I wanted to visit and things to experience.

To begin, it was good I was not the one driving to the track because as soon as I got a glimpse of the facility, I couldn’t turn my head away.  The pit structure stood five stories high with so many grandstands I couldn’t keep track of how many I saw and in the distance was the historical ferris wheel that I had seen so many times before in pictures.  It was the best feeling to finally be here, in person!

My first stop: Registration.  This large sphere shaped building with a very tall rounded ceiling was set up with several desks to help patrons’ receive their tickets.  It sure is nice they know how to speak some English, because otherwise I would have been there awhile!

Sliding on my Le Mans lanyard and hard card, it was time to actually enter the facility.  Cars were lined up all around to get into the famous racing circuit.  They actually scan in each person and vehicle as you enter and leave the track, which makes the wait longer to get in but results in accurate attendance numbers.

Since I am the media geek of the Road Atlanta group, I have to talk about the media center.  I was absolutely blown away by the amount of dedicated media and the space to accommodate such a crowd.  The system as a whole was very organized and easy to figure out.  And the view!  The view over looking pit row and down the front straight is priceless.  Every time you look up there are thousands of fans across track staring right back at you.  What a sight!

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