Charlotte Motor Speedway announced the festivities for the Memorial Day weekend Coca-Cola 600 Friday afternoon at Texas Motor Speedway. From ground exercises, rope teams, vintage warbirds and even a 21-gun salute, the military-packed show will also feature 600 U.S. Army soldiers marching through the grandstands before they hold two large American flags in the infield.
“The Salute the Troops portion of our pre-race show gives us a chance to say thank you to those who have served or continue to serve our country and protect our freedon,” Marcus Smith, president of Charlotte Motor Speedway said. “It’s a tradition our fans look forward to every year; seeing military demonstrations at live speed and the firepower is always impressive. We are always proud to work with our area military bases to bring this show to the fans.”
“On top of that, we’ve got Lee Brice, one of country music’s biggest stars, performing during our Pre-Race Pit Party, so our fans will certainly be in for an unforgettable day at Charlotte Motor Speedway.”
In addition to Brice’s pre-race show, a bugler from Fort Bragg will play Taps, the Charlotte Fire Department Pipe Band will perform Amazing Grace, the 82nd Airborne Chorus will sing the National Anthem, and God Bless the USA and the Armed Forces Medley will also be performed.
Additionally, the Patriot Partners program will transport military members to the track for the race weekend. Fans and businesses can sponsor an entire bus load of troops or by donating tickets for $25 each.
Overview of the Coca-Cola 600 Festivites:
Military Re-enactment Storms the Skies and the Frontstretch
The action-packed show will include:
- Ground exercises with troops from Fort Bragg featuring Humvees, Howitzers, a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System and more
- Rope teams from Fort Bragg descending from Black Hawk helicopters with an aerial reenactment of an invasion
- Vintage war birds with a flyover parade during pre-race ceremonies including a T-35 Buckaroo, P-149 Trainer, C-46 Commando, T-6 Texan and two P-51 Mustangs
- A 21-gun salute from the Fort Bragg Firing Squad
- 600 U.S. Army soldiers marching down the grandstands to the frontstretch, where they will display two American flags each as large as a football field
- Four F-15s from the 334th Fighter Squadron, Fighting Eagles Seymour Johnson AFB
- Sky-diving members of Team Fastrax descending to the infield with Old Glory flying behind
Thousands of Troops Honored during Pre-Race Ceremonies
- Fans will be able to salute the troops when 600 soldiers from Fort Bragg walk through the grandstands to the infield
- Through the Charlotte Motor Speedway Patriot Partners program, buses will bring thousands of troops. An unprecedented social media presence will allow fans to keep track of the troops’ adventures by following #PatriotPartners on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram
- Fans and businesses can take part by sponsoring an entire bus, or by donating Coca-Cola 600 tickets for just $25 each through the Let The Troops Race program
- Medal of Honor recipients Major General Patrick Henry Brady and U.S. Army Officer Joe Marm Jr. will also be recognized on the pre-race stage
- Through the new Salute the Crews program, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team members who have served in the military will be recognized during the pre-race ceremonies and on the giant Speedway TV
Military Performers, Country Music Stars Headline the Entertainment
A star-studded musical lineup will highlight the Coca-Cola 600 pre-race show, including:
- Two-time GRAMMY nominee and country music megastar Lee Brice will perform a 45-minute pre-race concert presented by Speed Perks
- Bugler from Fort Bragg to perform “Taps”
- Rendition of “Amazing Grace” by the Charlotte Fire Department Pipe Band
- Performance of “The Star Spangled Banner” by the 82nd Airborne Chorus
- Performances of “God Bless the USA” and the Armed Forces Medley
– See more at: http://www.charlottemotorspeedway.com/fans/news/high-powered-military-exercises-inspiring-musical-performances-highlight-spectacular-salute-troops-coca-cola-600-pre-race-show.html#sthash.qZkxMSts.dpuf
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Content Director Beth heads up management of our 30-person staff, acting as Tom’s main assistant with technology and personnel while working as Frontstretch’s Truck Series expert. The author of Truckin’ Thursdays and the coordinator of the site’s pre and post-race coverage, she also runs a periodic charity column that spotlights when NASCAR gives back. A childhood transplant to Texas, Beth is a 15-year writing veteran who has contributed content to BRANDT and Athlon Sports, among other outlets.
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