CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Charlotte Motor Speedway has announced a series of programs surrounding the 54th running of the Coca-Cola 600, including an air parade and a program expected to help as many as 20,000 troops attend the historic event.
Highlighting the list of programs announced Tuesday during a press conference at Carolinas Aviation Museum was a special one-of-a-kind air parade that will take place prior to the Coca-Cola 600 on May 26. The parade will feature 10 vintage warbirds, a patriotic flyover and a special flight by an American bald eagle.
“When the sequester took away military flyovers earlier this year, we heard from hundreds of fans who wanted to know what we were going to do at the Coca-Cola 600,” said Marcus Smith, president and general manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway. “Instead of doing less, we’re going to ramp it up and give the fans more aircraft than ever before as part of our spectacular military pre-race tribute on Memorial Day weekend.”
The pre-race flyover will also include two P-51 Mustangs owned by NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team owner Jack Roush. The pre-race show will also feature country music artist Jamie Tate, the 82nd Airborne All-American Chorus, a bagpipe performance of “Amazing Grace” by the Charlotte Fire Department Pipe band and “Taps” played by a Fort Bragg bugler.
Also announced Tuesday was the new Patriot Partners bus sponsorship program. The program will provide companies and individuals with the chance to send members of the U.S. Armed Forces to the Coca-Cola 600.
Several companies, including Coca-Cola, Toyota, Smithfield Farms, Goodyear and others, have already signed up for the program. The goal is to send 20,000 troops to the Coca-Cola 600 on May 26. tickets are only $25 and can be purchased through the speedway ticket office or online at www.charlottemotorspeedway.com.