You know it’s officially summer when NASCAR comes to the Pocono Raceway in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Every year, my friends and I attend but unfortunately, we missed last year because of the pandemic. So, this year, we were extremely excited to spend a weekend at the track.
Accessibility at the Pocono Raceway
One of my favorite things about the Pocono Raceway is the accessibility. The amenities offered to power wheelchair users are vast. There is always adequate accessible parking close to the track. There is a ton of staff available to ask any questions. There’s medical personnel walking around all over the place in case anybody experiences a medical issue. There is even a power wheelchair shuttle service that takes you from one end of the track to the other. If you don’t want to drive your power wheelchair a huge distance, the track has more than one shuttle operating, so you don’t wait very long for a ride. This is a huge plus in my book. If you’ve been to any kind of event or concert, usually they only have one type of wheelchair accessible transportation, if they even have accessible transportation at all!
Watching the Race
This year, one of my friends from North Carolina who used to race in the amateur/semi pro league was called up to the ARCA series to drive for someone who was sick. I was excited to see him during the weekend. I was even more excited to see him race at the Pocono Raceway. We all had pit team passes, which allowed us to access the track, the pit crews and the garage.
Before the race, we hung out in the pits in the garage. The team had some breakfast set up, so we grabbed a bite to eat and the next thing you know the race started! I elevated my power wheelchair up to 12 inches to get a better view of things. Unfortunately, halfway through the race, my buddy was in fifth place and another driver got loose and clipped his quarter panel going into turn three coming down the straightaway. It spun him out. His car was damaged, and he was not able to continue the race. Thankfully he was okay and did not have any injuries after the medical staff took a look at him. So, it was really cool to spend a little bit of time together after the race.
It always fascinated me hanging out by the race cars and seeing all the technology and preparation that goes into a race. There were so many people from the pits that asked questions about my power wheelchair. No one had seen a wheelchair drive elevated at iLevel® before. Some of the crew members some great ideas and suggestions, which was funny because I had been looking around the garage and looking at the cars for ideas for our power wheelchairs. Overall, the NASCAR weekend was great. I’m looking forward to my next race.
About Josh McDermott: Josh is a brand ambassador for Quantum Rehab®. He is a public speaker and has served as a goodwill ambassador for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Josh lives in New York and loves to travel. Click hereto learn more about Josh.
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