Richard Petty Day at the World Wide Technology Raceway

It was Richard Petty Day World Technology Race Madison on Friday and “King” was all over the track.

At the Enjoy Illinois 300 NASCAR Cup on Sunday, 84-year-old Petty met with fans, race organizers and the media.

And Petty, the winner of seven NASCAR season championships, seven Daytona 500 and 200 races, made the solemn first lap around the 1.25-mile race track. The skinny 6-foot-tall car racing star stepped on the track adorned with her branded cowboy hat adorned with feathers.

The race will be the first time NASCAR drivers will compete in an authorized event in the St. Louis area. It will be broadcast on FS1 on Sunday at 2.30pm.

Here’s a summary of Petty’s answers to the questions he asked all day:

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NASCAR legend Richard Petty poses for photos before riding the first NASCAR World Ride Raceway. Friday was Richard Petty Day as the race track prepares for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series at the Illegalis in Enjoy. 300. Derik Holtman dholtmann@bnd.com

What did he think before stepping into his branded no. 43 cars for your solemn circle?

Petty noted that he retired in 1992. and had not raced on the track for several years.

“So don’t look for anything fancy, I’ll tell you that,” he told fans before running. “No burnout and nothing like that.”

And after the wheel he asked him at what speed he went on the journey:

“I never ran this track again, so I walked pretty easily,” he told BND.

“It’s a pretty difficult track, especially the first and second turns, so it’s going to be a busy turn,” he said.

He noted that “most racers” had not previously raced on the World Wide Technology Raceway and had to “learn the track” during a one-hour workout on Friday.

Looking back on your 200 NASCAR achievements, which one stands out to you?

“The first was a big deal and the second and another,” he told fans.

“Probably the 200th race I won in 1984. Dayton against the President of the United States on the Fourth of July. If you were writing a Hollywood screenplay, no one would believe it. I think that was the pinnacle of my career in that regard.

The victory in Florida was the Firecracker 400, and President Ronald Reagan joined Petty that day in the winning streak.

“It was a cherry on the cake because it was also my last victory,” Petty told BND.

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NASCAR legend Richard Petty and World Wide Technology Raceway owner Curtis Francois are preparing to cut the strip of the Enjoy Illinois 300 series at the NASCAR Cup on Sunday. Derik Holtman dholtmann@bnd.com

What does the Enjoy Illinois 300 NASCAR Cup Series mean for the St. Louis area?

“It simply came to our notice then. It’s a new territory for all fans, “Petty told BND. “It will help NASCAR open the Midwest to fans.

He praised the district’s businesses for investing in the track and sponsoring the World Wide Technology Raceway, formerly known as Gateway Motorsports Park.

“It simply came to our notice then.

What was the most unusual autograph you ever signed?

Petty told fans she attended the North Carolina State Fair a year ago, and one man said she had something to sign, and then disappeared briefly.

When he returned, Petty was surprised to see what he had to sign.

“He had a duck … and he spread the wings of that duck, and I laid Richard Petty right on it.

“When he lost his feathers, he lost his signature, so I’ll probably have to come back and do it again.

This story was originally published 2022 June 4 7:09 p.m.

Mike Koziatek joined the Belleville News-Democrat in 1998. as an assistant editor, and is now a reporter covering the Belleville area. He graduated from Marquette University in Milwaukee and is from St. Louis.

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