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Fans enjoy last race of season

Published: Monday, Sept. 9, 2013 11:28 a.m. CDT • Updated: Monday, Sept. 9, 2013 11:48 a.m. CDT
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(Kate Malott/Daily News)
The Newton Police Department stood with the family of Pat Richardson during a moment of silence at the introduction of the Fan Appreciation 200 on Sunday at the Iowa Speedway. Officer Richardson passed away last week.
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(Kate Malott/Daily News)
Race fans cheer as the Fan Appreciation 200 goes into 12 extra laps on Sunday.
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(Kate Malott/Daily News)
Race fans can participate in the Rusty Wallace Kart Experience at the beginning of a race on the north side of the concourse. Adult karts are for fans ages 14 and older experience speeds over 50 mph in the Sodikart RT8 model kart. Children 8 and older can also ride in a kids kart.
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(Kate Malott/Daily News)
Boy Scouts Pack 356 of Aurora Heights were acknowledge at the Iowa Speedway on Sunday during introductions. The group meets on Monday nights.
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(Kate Malott/Daily News)
Race fans climb aboard the Casey's Fan Walk shuttle, which took them to the track for the Fan Walk experience.

The Iowa Speedway held its final race of the season, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Fan Appreciation 200 presented by New Holland on Sunday. The event was a way to thank fans for their loyal attendance to the speedway.

As part of the appreciation event, students were able to purchase tickets for $5 and military personnel for $10.

At the beginning of the race, local first responders were acknowledged, and there was a moment of silence for Lt. Pat Richardson of the Newton Police Department. Richardson passed away last week.

One of many fan favorites at the speedway is the Fan Walk presented by Casey’s. The Fan Walk allows fans to observe the pit crews and race from the gated area between pit road and the car garages.

Children ages 12 and under are admitted to the Fan Walk area at no charge and must be accompanied by an adult. A Fan Walk pass also entitles participants to a free shuttle ride to and from the Fan Walk area. The experience also gives guests the opportunity to hangout in the infield anytime between when the gates open until the end of the race, according to Fan Walk Security.

Mark Cooper of Runnells and his friend’s son are season ticket holders. They purchased a Fan Walk package at the beginning of each race season that allowed them access throughout the entire Iowa Speedway season.

“I like the Fan Walk because it’s a different view of the race. It’s just great being down there,” Cooper said.

Many race goers expressed satisfaction with the speedway’s organization and said it positively influences them to come back to future races.

For instance, a free round-trip tram service runs from the speedway to the campgrounds on Rusty Wallace Drive, allowing campers to easily get to and from the race.

“This tram is really nice. All you do is shout, and they stop for you anywhere you want,” season camper Lisa Williams of Monticello said. “In the early years, they didn’t have this. You had to walk, but this is just a really nice added feature to our experience.”

Campers, tailgaters and fans alike expressed sincere thanks for the conveniences at the race and said they enjoy their time at the race.

“The biggest thing for me is I don’t think you will ever see a bad race because of the way this track is built. It’s just always a good race. That’s what is important to me,” Steve Williams said. “Some tracks are rather boring, actually. I like door-to-door, a little bit of rubbing. That’s racing, and that’s what you see here.”

Staff writer Kate Malott may be contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 422, or at kmalott@newtondailynews.com.

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