Day 73 - The Kings Museum - NC-RAIN

Trip Start May 30, 2013
Trip End Aug 30, 2013

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Flag of United States  , North Carolina
Saturday, August 10, 2013

We broke camp from the very humid Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.  We were on the road less than an hour and it was 90F and peaked out at 97F before we got to Randleman, NC.  The clouds got black, and let loose a good shower -- the temperature dropped to 85F in less than a mile. 

We cruised into Randleman and found the Richard Petty Museum.  Richard Petty is known as "the king" for his 200 Nascar victories and 7 championship.  But he is also known as a very nice person.  He is focused on his family, his work [racing] and his fans.  He is known for valuing the interactions with the fans,  he made it a point to sign each autograph so every letter is readable, he felt that the fans were the base of Nascar and should be valued and shown respect. 

The museum has some of his championship race cars, his father's[Lee]  and his son's [kyle] [and his late grand son - Adam].  Also the collections included his trophies, uniforms and a movie.  The highlight of the collection was the 426 cubic inch HEMI powered 1971 Plymouth Super Bird with the high rear wing.  That car recorded a 210 mph qualifying lap at Talladega, AL.  Nascar outlawed the engine and the wing because it made the cars too fast for the tracks [in thier opinion].

[Correction:   Nascar did not outlaw the engine - they reduced its horsepower by restricting the air flow - the wing was dropped  but I do not know why -- Richard- probably other ways to get similar downforce with less drag. Petty won two championships in the 1970's with the dodge charger using a 426 ci engine -- sorry ]

Most of Petty's cars are painted "petty blue".  The color was developed in the early days of petty racing when they did not have enough blue paint for their cars so they mixed some white.  They liked the color and have used it ever since.

As a note the museum staff are special.  We were buying our tickets and asked if the post cards of Richard were for sale.  The lady said  -- they were free -- Linda asked if she could have a couple - the clerk said sure and do you want Richard to sign them.  Turns out Richard Petty will sigh them and mail them to us. 

Also later,  I got some stuff and was checking out -- I asked if there was a drinking fountain - the clerk said no but they use bottled water and motioned to the assistant to go.  He came back in  a minute with an icy cold bottle of water -- I think she answered the question "What would Richard Petty do?".  I really needed the water on that hot day - it was good.

On our trip from Randleman to Concord,NC we could see a black cloud on the horizon, it got blacker, and blacker until it was almost Dark -- then it started to rain, then pour, then buckets, then multiple buckets.  We -- and many other drivers -- pulled over to the side of the road.  We waited about 10 minutes for the storm to lessen enough for us to drive.  The rain lessened and eventually quit before our RV park in Concord -- we are camping just a 100 yards from the Charlotte Motor Speedway. 

Tomorrow we will visit the Nascar Hall of Fame in Charlotte. 
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