A couple years ago my friend Kristen and I wrote a Post about the difference between being a super fan and a casual fan of the IndyCar series. Kristen did not attend another race with me until we went to Iowa this summer. We were joined by Lisa who is a huge IndyCar fan. We found a couple more things that separate the diehard fans from the casual ones. Many had us laughing so hard, things Lisa and I see as completely normal Kristen finds rather strange and vice versa. So here is what we learned this year.
1. A super fan will wake up long before the sun rises to hit the road in order to attend a race weekend. It makes no sense to go to a race and not watch every practice and qualifying session. A casual fan would rather attend her sons ballgame and leave after that even if that means missing qualifying.
2. A super fan refers to the drivers by their first name and acts like they actually know the driver (we feel like we do). The casual fan often has no clue who the super fan is talking about because sport figures usually go by their last names and the casual fan is trying to figure out who the heck Tony, Charlie and Scott are.
3. When hanging out at the hotel pool after a hot day at a speedway a casual fan might be tempted to yell out “Polo” to a popular game kids are playing in the pool. A super fan will have a completely different answer and yell out “Andretti”.
4. A super fan knows the drivers birthdays and will often tweet birthday wishes. While discussing this at dinner Kristen couldn’t believe how many of the drivers birthdays Lisa and I knew without looking them up. Okay I will admit we didn’t always remember the exact date but between the two of us we knew the Month for many.
5. A super fan won’t go to just any restaurant while attending a race weekend but will tweet other IndyCar fans or even Curt Cavin because they know that Curt suggested a burger place years ago and they need to check it out. A casual fan will find something close and easy because they are tired after a day at the track.
6. A super fan gets all geeked out when her blog is mentioned by the king of IndyCar bloggers- George Phillip of Oilpressureblog.com. A casual fan is shocked that there is more than one person blogging about IndyCar.
7. A super fan has her own scanner and regularly checks in with Debbie who works for Racing Elecronics to make sure she is good to go before the green flag. A casual fan hopefully remembers to bring ear protection. I will admit it’s Lisa that has a scanner. I usually follow along on my Verizon app and listen to IndyCar Radio.
8. A super fan knows and recognizes the radio announcers. A casual fan scratches her head wondering how you know what the radio announcers look like.
9. A super fan will rearrange the IndyCar magnets on her car putting the driver with the most points in first. A casual fan sadly does not have any IndyCar bumper stickers or magnets on her car.
10. Perhaps our favorite and the one we laughed over the most. A super fan follows the drivers pet dogs on Twitter. During the Iowa weekend Norman Pagenaud tweeted reminding us to vote for Simon for the ESPY’s. Kristen could not stop laughing when I showed her the tweet. She laughed even harder when she learned he wasn’t the only dog I follow. Chevy Clausen is another sweet pup I follow. The best part was it didn’t even dawn on me that she would find it funny or weird that I follow dogs on twitter- don’t we all? When we told Lisa she said she also followed Norman and of course had voted for Simon.
So are we diehard fans or crazy- perhaps a bit a both? Regardless, we all had a blast at the Iowa race. Kristen continues learning about IndyCar and Lisa and I were given the enjoyable task of sharing our passion her. We met fans from all categories at the track. Some like Lisa and I were already big fans, some were season pass holders and preferred NASCAR, some were just starting to follow IndyCar. We even met two young men from Australia who decided to come to America and watch as much racing as they could. They had been to several dirt tracks and were pretty excited to be watching the IndyCars at Iowa. That is a passion for racing!