MADISON, Ill. — When NASCAR dropped the checkered flag on the Enjoy Illinois 300 it wrapped up a weekend that was more than 55 years in the making for race fans in and around St. Louis.
Fans started lining up hours before the flag dropped for NASCAR’s first ever pit stop in the Metro East.
“We came in about 10 o’clock this morning,” said Marty David. “Everybody is a rookie this year.”
The action on the track had race fans like Marty David all revved up.
“I just want to like listen to the noise,” said Anna Burmeister.
“I mean it’s great,” said David. “It’s a short enough track that you can see basically the whole race, so that’s great. Plus, we’ve got the best seats in the house.”
First time race fans like Cassandra Johnson left blown away by more than the action on the track.
“Everyone is so friendly,” said Cassandra Johnson. “This is my first NASCAR event and the people, the vendors, and everyone have had a beautiful time so far.”
“We’ve had a good showing,” said Ray Hall. "There’s a lot of fans. It’s good for the area.”
However long lines at the concession stands may have left more than a few fans wishing they could step on the gas.
“It’s been 35-40 minutes,” said Burmeister. “I need to bring a grill. We need to tailgate better.”
That didn’t stop race fans from trying to convince NASCAR to make World Wide Technology Raceway a permanent stop.
“They can’t go anywhere else if they don’t stop here,” said Johnson.
“This is a great track,” said David. “It’s a perfect size for NASCAR. I think it’s got to be every year now.”
“Plan to come out months, and months, and maybe a year a head of time,” said Johnson. “It’s worth it. It really is!”