Retirement Activities: Petit LeMans Race
Since retiring I have really enjoyed going to the Petit LeMans sports car endurance race series with two of my buddies.
We have attended the Petit LeMans race at Road Atlanta for the last five years now and it has become an annual event that we look forward to. The series is in about 15 cities beginning in January and ending in November. Check the Petit LeMans schedule for upcoming races. Class winners in our race automatically received an invitation to race at the 24 Hours of Lemans (France) next year.
I am not a car person but I like it. I did attended some races when I was in my 20’s and maybe even 30’s. Then got busy with my career and stop going. Now I see many if not most of the 100,000 in attendance are in their 40/s, 50’s, 60’s and higher age bracket. Lots of groups of men with gray hair like I have and some couples.
The paddock area is open before the race and fans and go down on the track and look at the cars, drivers and crew. These are very sophisticated operations, that is for sure.
Last year, two of us got invitied to take a pre race ride around in the track with a professional driver. The driver of the Viper I was riding in got us up to 125 MPH and that was quite exciting. They go much faster in the race of course.
It is a spectator sport but there is some activity just getting your chairs set up in a good viewing position after you have been to the paddock area. Bring ear plugs. There are large screens set up along the track for viewing also.
The race is 10 hours or 1,000 miles. There are four classes of autos and they all race at the same time. There is a prototype named the DeltaWing that you have to see. Several others too.
The three of us left my Johns Creek home at 8AM, had breakfast and was at the paddock area by around 9:30AM. This race we left for home about 3:30PM but have stayed until dark. Sometimes we pick up the wives and go get bar-b-Que after the race.
We are already talking about going next year. It is fun and we enjoy it. Isn’t that what retirement is all about!