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By Brian Smith
Dover International Speedway offers thousands of seating options on a race weekend. From high in Turn 4, where you can easily see the entire oval, to low on the frontstretch, where you can see — and feel — the field of 43 cars zoom past as they take the green flag. But none of these options compare to the complete experience that is available to guests in VELOCITY.
This notion has been upheld by unofficial research in the form of the dozens of fans who have locked in tickets to the all-inclusive, three-day suite and aren’t letting them go.
It’s easy to see why. There’s no other place at Dover — or at most other racetracks — that offers a package like this. VELOCITY includes a view of the entire track and all of pit road from a vantage point high above the start-finish line. There are 10 plasma TVs, a beyond-incredible buffet and open bar, complimentary Sprint FanView scanners, guided tours of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage, appearances by NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers and big-name NASCAR personalities, and more.
“It’s excellent,” said Norman Bayliss of Winchester, Va., who was at VELOCITY for his second race weekend in September. “It’s great to see all the drivers and owners and talk to a lot of different people that you see on TV and just want to talk to, but can’t. You get to actually do that here.”
Bayliss and his fiancé, Dawn Leighty, first came to VELOCITY for the June 2008 race weekend. It quickly became their favorite destination on a multi-track NASCAR schedule.
“We’ve gone to Richmond in the spring, Bristol, we came here, and Martinsville,” Leighty said. “We’re definitely keeping this one. Next year we’re going down to two races a year, and these are the ones that are going to stay.”
The same features that are keeping Leighty and Bayliss in VELOCITY are the ones that brought Mike Wagner and his son Gavin all the way from Seattle to see the September race weekend.
“We were looking to go to a race in the fall, and I looked on the website to see where the locations were,” Mike Wagner said. “We were looking for a place that had a nice club like this. We’ve gone to the Phoenix track a number of times and they had a nice club like this, and we got kind of spoiled. As I was looking on all the websites, this one looked to be one of the best in terms of fan hospitality.”
Jason Newmark, who hosts guests at VELOCITY, summed up the experience as simply unique.
“It’s the only suite at Dover that is truly created for the individual fan,” Newmark said. “A fan can buy just one ticket here and come in for all three days. You’re right on the start-finish line, there’s 10 plasma TVs, top-notch food, open bar, driver appearances and special guests — it’s really the only suite of its kind not only at Dover, but at most other tracks as well.
“It fills up rapidly every year and we have multiple repeat customers every race. It’s definitely an unparallel experience across the board with the service. No other suite has as many people here assisting customers as we do. There’s a garage tour on Sunday that people love. It gives all guests the complete race weekend experience.”
That’s exactly why Bayliss and so many others keep coming back, and wanting to bring others. His brother Kevin is on his second tour of duty in Iraq with the United States Marine Corps, and will be returning in April. Bayliss can’t wait to bring him to Dover next June.
“You do get spoiled,” Bayliss said. “I’ve been to a couple other tracks, and you’re sitting up there in the stands and it’s 95 degrees out with no air conditioning, and you’re just thinking ‘Wow, I miss Dover.’”
For more information or to purchase a seat in VELOCITY, call 302-883-6585.