: Richard Petty Driving Experience

07-11-10, 09:28 PM
As some of you may remember, when I retired, my wife and daughters gave it to me as a retirement present. Next Saturday at 1:00 is it. I get a turn at the wheel of a NASCAR stock car at Joliet speedway. Looking forward to it. :burn:

07-11-10, 09:56 PM
Awesome! I really, really want to do that some day.

07-11-10, 10:11 PM
Sweet! Pictures!

07-11-10, 11:17 PM
Petty has gotten some fines for misrepresenting his operation with some erroneous speedometers and some other stuff. That being said, I have never met anybody that did the deal and felt they were ripped off.

07-11-10, 11:44 PM
My sister-in-law (an avid stock car fan) got drive a stock car as a birhtday gift a few years back. She had a great time and needless to say a very memorable experience! I hope ypu really have a great time and get lots of pictures.

07-12-10, 05:37 AM
I did it at WDW a year or so back. My experience was very positive (should have bought a few more laps); the instructors were top notch and the cars were like driving on a rail. Hope you have as much fun as I had.

07-12-10, 12:06 PM
Rats - I'll be out of town this weekend. But if plans change, I'll be there to watch / take pics.

C'mon Chicago folks - let's see some people show up and support our guy! You know JD would have been there!

07-12-10, 12:54 PM
I think the package includes some pictures, but not sure. My daughter said she wanted to come to take some so if that happens I'll try to post some.

07-12-10, 06:27 PM
Wow, what a nice gift!
Go Ranger, and beat the Dale Earnhardt Jr!:dance:

johnny kannapo
07-13-10, 11:02 PM
I'm a Poser http://i826.photobucket.com/albums/zz183/billytheshoe/eefe7481.jpg

07-16-10, 02:28 PM
I did one at Kansas Motor Speedway about 2 years ago. It was paid for by a vendor of ours for a couple sales people and customers. It was just the 1/2 day watch video then learn track and signals, then 5 laps driving yourself following an instructor. You then get your timeslips for each lap and average speed. In between I paid extra $75.00 for 3 laps in a ride-a-long which was at full nascar speed. The experience was great! I want to do this at Taledega, Indy, or Daytona. Also a road couse would be fun. Chicago land speedway is the same size as Kansas Motor speedway so your speeds should be about the same as our class. The weirdest thing is having to turn towards the wall on the back straight as the car wants to hug down low but the line is at the wall. Overall I would highly suggest anyone in to cars or racing do this if you can buy the biggest package you can comfortably afford and you will love it! I have had friends do the whole weekend sessions where you race door to door and pass and they can't wait to save the cash to do again. Report back on your thoughts, but as stated before in this thread I have never heard of anyone walking away unhappy. Congrats and have fun!

07-17-10, 02:01 AM
I think I can make it out to watch!

07-17-10, 09:59 PM
MacMuse did make it out there and should have some great pics. Looking forward to seeing them. THANK YOU Todd! :worship:

Well, I can definitely say it WAS an experience. I'll start by saying that climbing in and out out one of those things is not as easy as it appears.

They give very specific instructions in the training class. NO BURNOUTS out of the pits. :tisk: :( They want you to stay 3-5 car lengths behind the pace car. The pace car has a green right side tail light that he will flash if you are too far behind and a yellow if you are too close. Sounds easy you say? Let me tell you, 3-5 car lengths is AWFULLY close at 140 MPH. It's just not what we are used to. I got several green lights. :o Finally tucked it up behind him. The sound of that motor when you stick your foot in it is something else. I'll never look at the Viagra logo on the side of Mark Martins #6 car the same again. It has a whole new meaning to me now. :) The A/C in those cars leaves a LOT to be desired though (it was 98 degrees on the way home). The only bad thing is that by the time you start to feel even a little comfortable and get a feel for the car and where to place yourself, it's over. 8 laps go by very fast. I never had any idea where I was on the track (or what lap I was on). I was transfixed on the pace cars bumper and I was only at 140 MPH. Can't even imagine what it's like at 200 (in traffic). I'll never look at another NASCAR race the same again. It was a truly awesome experience that I would like to thank my wife Marilyn, my daughter Annette, my daughter Cheryl and her husband Jon for best gift I ever got.

If you guys ever get the chance, GO FOR IT! :burn:

07-17-10, 10:21 PM
That sounds so cool, Larry. I hope I can do something like that sometime. You've got a great wife, daughters and son-in-law to do this for you. Kudos to them.

07-17-10, 11:19 PM
Even just attending Ranger's day was awesome. Attendees could just drive right into the inner pit/garage area. We watched from behind pit wall just shy of the finish line. The views were amazing.

Seriously, we just drive right into the heart of the infield...

Final Driver Instructions

Loading in, take 1

Loading in, take 2 -- the #27 car was too small the tall Ranger. The #2 seemed to fit just right. :)

Ready to hit the track!

Crossing the line on the final lap.

And safely back to the pits

07-17-10, 11:29 PM
Man, that looks like a good time. I'll have to give it a shot. ;)

07-18-10, 12:17 AM
Unlike your daily driver, these cars are NOT one size fits all. Getting into #27 was a real chore. They are built for the driver so they have a variety there. Once in, my knees where up beside the steering wheel. Once in (finally) the pit guy suggested I wait for a bigger car. Getting out was another story. :rolleyes: #2 was a much better fit. It was somewhat like buying a pair of shoes.

07-19-10, 11:59 AM
Ranger glad you had a great time. They did not have the different colored tails when i did it, just hand signals and flag signals. I made a few suggestions on my comment card. 1. have more laps as you said you just get comfortable it seems and it's over. 2. Along with more laps have 2 sessions one to get comfortable then a breifing with the instructors for advise then the 2nd session to get the most out of it. 3. Have 2 way radios to haer advise from the instructors and give them feed back as in I feel real comfortable can we bump up the speed quicker? etc.... Ours did not have speedo's either just tach's but it does seem like they listen to the comments as they probably got the tail light ideas from someones comments. Sounds like they once again did their jobs leving the customer always wanting more!

07-19-10, 12:21 PM
Yeah, I agree with all your comments, but lets face it, they are there to make money for Petty and they do that by running as many drivers through as possible in a day (and they run a LOT). Two sessions and more laps would be great, but slow down the process. They really want you to come back for more and buy a larger (more laps) package. It could get very addictive very fast. They even made mention of bigger packages in the training class and then said "We'll build you a house right next to Richard Petty if you have the money". One thing that kind of rubbed me wrong is that they take your picture next to the car. Another in the drivers seat (you saw the camera girl in the pic that MacMuse posted). They even have an in car video running of you driving and another of what you are seeing out the windshield. All for a price of coarse. Now I know this is a business and Petty is there to make money (and he makes several truck loads per day if you just watch the number of drivers and ride a longs that go through there. Multiply that times the number of tracks around the country and you get the idea), but for the price of 8 laps I really felt this should have been included.

Radio communication would go a LONG way and have been a great help.

07-19-10, 02:00 PM
Agreed. But I will not opt to buy the pics or vids from them next time as it won't be the first time. Everyone I know has only done the pics and vids the first time and put that $ to bigger packages later. Glad you enjoyed it. It is something you have to experience to value it.

07-19-10, 04:59 PM
Wow! Great pictures by MacMuse ... and great sharing them with us. Looks like a really great experience, especially for someone who is a NASCAR devotee.

After seeing the contortions of getting a driver into the car, I wonder how they got my sister-in-law into one of those cars without major body work ... on her or the car!

07-21-10, 11:50 AM
I just got around to reading some of the material that they gave me when I left (mostly advertising), but there was a letter that said after the first drive you are automatically enrolled in their rewards program and all future rides are discounted (almost half). This may become a yearly event. I FEEL THE NEED FOR SPEED!

07-21-10, 11:56 AM
There ya go!

07-26-10, 03:34 PM
A couple panoramic shots from Ranger's track day. These were taken from the finish line behind the pit wall.


I botched the overlap on this next shot, otherwise it would have been a full 180 degree view from this vantage point. so just imagine this next shot tacked on to the right end of the first one. That's 5 shots in the first picture, and just two in the 2nd.


What a gorgeous day out there, so glad I went.

07-26-10, 06:16 PM

07-26-10, 09:43 PM
Sort of puts the daily beltway grind into perspective, doesn't it ??

Karen says "Go for it.........."----- done lotsa sports car road course racing, but not this. I'm gonna do it before I hit 71.

Any hard and fast age limits ??? (I'll get an 8hp go-kart.)

07-26-10, 10:07 PM
Go for it. You won't be sorry. I promise.

If you have a valid drivers license, a credit card, can drive a 4 speed and can climb in and out of that window, you're in for the ride of your life. The only age limit is on the other end. I think it's 14 for a ride-a-long.

07-26-10, 10:14 PM
Sort of puts the daily beltway grind into perspective, doesn't it ??

Karen says "Go for it.........."----- done lotsa sports car road course racing, but not this. I'm gonna do it before I hit 71.

Any hard and fast age limits ??? (I'll get an 8hp go-kart.)

Just do it, Sir! No hesitation.... It should be fun! and keep us updated.

07-26-10, 10:42 PM
I would love to do this someday... :(

07-27-10, 04:16 PM
I did this up at Louden Speedway in NH a few years ago.I had a blast.

07-27-10, 06:31 PM
Awesome! I really, really want to do that some day.

There's at least one in FL, Sting (Specifically at that Diznee Whirled place)

07-27-10, 06:36 PM
Yeah, I know. But I'm broke. lol

07-28-10, 06:10 PM
Yeah, I know. But I'm broke. lol

The pattern I can see is that we need to wait until 62 or 70 years olds, and then hopefully if our kids are as kind as Ranger's we may get a free ticket for Rally....:bonkers::p