MADISON, Ill. (KMOX) – A race day produces a melting pot of stories beyond what’s happening on the track.
Such was the case Saturday night at Gateway Motorsports Park for the Bommarito 500 IndyCar race.
Teenager Hunter Glasford came from northern Illinois to enjoy the Boy Scouts of America partnership with driver Ed Jones and the Dale Coyne Racing Team.
That meant the Life Scout got to go behind-the-scenes, “I really liked seeing cars continuously going around the track, because they are going so quickly. It’s really cool. So is seeing the technicians working on the cars.”
Dale Henry from Florida, stayed busy throughout the race making artwork, “I do all kinds of promotional speed-painting, portraits, any kind of painting at all. I am the Paint Man.”
Henry waited patiently after the event to give his depiction of the blue and white #2 car to race-winning driver Josef Newgarden of Penske Racing.
And then there were the members of the Madison Fire Department, stationed around the outside of the track.
Captain Mike Reeter got to see many of the 40,000 spectators up close, “IndyCar takes care of the track. We take care of the pit area and parking area first- responder needs. That’s everything from a stubbed toe to a camper on fire.”
Reeter says his crews also provided support for the IndyCar emergency crews, “We all had to familiarize ourselves with alcohol (fuel) a lot more than we normally would, because that’s what they’re burning here (in the race cars).
Reeter says volunteers from other neighboring fire departments helped provide manpower for the event.