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Patriotism or Burritos?

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Stock Car Racing Topics:  Stewart-Haas Racing, Ryan Newman, Coke Zero 400 powered by Coca-Cola

Patriotism or Burritos?

Jeremy T. Sellers
Jerm's Joint
July 6, 2010

First, allow me to preface this article by stating, "WOW! What a party!" I've been witness to some memorable moments at Daytona, but this rates in the top three. Everyone in attendance got their money's worth, even if their driver was caught up in the "big one", it was still a thriller. I also want to give a shout-out to a couple folks my wife and I met pre-race, proving that no matter who your driver is, we are all there for the same party and can laugh it up like we were forever friends. Vicky and Wayne Adams were a real hoot to hang out with and hope they had safe travels home. As fans, we know how both nights of race weekend concluded, so I won't beat that up, it was what DIDN'T happen that left me a tad bitter.

If our readers have ever been to Daytona for the July race, it's apparent that they are all about our service men and women, serving here or abroad. Our soliders are catered to, and honored, as they should be on Independence Day. It's great to see our service folks getting the VIP treatment, they've earned it. With that in mind, did anyone notice what was missing from Ryan Newman's ride? Hmmm, didn't think about it? You should have, considering the patriotic significance of the weekend.

Now granted, at first, I didn't catch it either. I was still smiling from Dale Jr's victory Friday night, and became frustrated watching his struggles Saturday. Then the light switch buzzed, cracked, and finally came on when I realized that Stewart-Haas decided frozen burritos were more important than Newman's other primary sponsor, the US Army, on the weekend of our nation's birth. Dale Jr. ran the National Guard as his primary sponsor along with an awesome digital camoflauge paint scheme. Hell, even the US Airforce, Paralyzed Veterans, and Air National Guard were represented on cars for the race! This writer even completed 40 push-ups at the National Guard tent to get a pretty cool t-shirt! Yet all you could see if our Army being represented was a small decal behind the rear tire on Newman's buggy.

I am more than certain that there are extenuating circumstances, contracts, and sponsorship blah blah blahs, that I am not privy to that went into the reasoning here, but come on, get a set of balls! You are racing on the weekend of our nation's independence! If you have the US Army as a part time, primary sponsor, it shouuld be an absolute no-brainer as to what rides on the hood and quarter panels. I will do you one better, I'm going to throw some blame at the Army as well! It should have been paramount to ensure their name was riding top side Saturday night! Regardless, someone's head was SO far up SOMEONE's back side, that they were asphyxiated via sphincter! My rant!

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