Ross Chastain honors family history with watermelon celebrations

Who Bob Pockrass
FOX Sports NASCAR writer

This FOX Sports newsletter often covers serious topics on the NASCAR circuit.

But this is a week of rest Cup Series drivers. And a few weeks are left before the unofficial start of summer (Memorial Day) and a few days away from the official start of summer next week.

So instead of talking about the number of winners, the pressure to make the playoffs, the wheels coming out of the race cars, the weekly fights or the stupid seasons, it seems appropriate … to talk about watermelon.

Yes, watermelon. The basics of a summer picnic. Good food you don’t want to miss… Ross Chastain and if you don’t celebrate a victory.

Fans have seen Chastain break the watermelon in celebration of his victories. And then he eats them from the ground.

Ross Chastain after winning his first Cup

Ross Chastain after winning his first Cup

Ross Chastain remembers the watermelon that won the first Cup of his career with a special celebration.

It may seem raw, but it says watermelon is never so sweet.

29-year-old Chastain is an eighth-generation Florida watermelon farmer. This is a very organic, very real celebration for him. The more watermelons you sell, the better for your family business.

And it doesn’t matter if a good watermelon is wasted on advertising.

The task of selecting the watermelon for the celebration does not fall on Chastain or any of his family. This responsibility lies with Team Trackhouse transporter Roy Miller, who drives the transporter through the cars to all races. When he goes out to buy food for the weekend team, he will choose a smash watermelon.

“It’s up to Mr. Roy to make the final decision – and his wife – to decide on a weekly watermelon carrier,” Chastain said. “So I have nothing to say. That’s up to them.

“I gave him my advice on choosing the best one.”

In fact, Chastain has specific instructions.

“Heavy,” he said. “It should be heavy because of its size. That means it has a lot of water, 92 percent water.”

Ross Chastain has won his fourth Truck Series race

Ross Chastain has won his fourth Truck Series race

Watch the latest laps of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in Charlotte, where Ross Chastain took the win after the restart.

So yes, Miller goes through the watermelon bucket at the grocery store to find a heavy one. Often the heaviest ones are yellow on the bottom because of all that water.

“He’s done a great job, but the science has been a little more accurate,” Chastain said.

As watermelons deteriorate more quickly in the summer, Chastain is not overly concerned. He says it usually takes about a month before a new one is needed.

“However, they are kept air-conditioned,” he said. “It simply came to our notice then [car] the carrier is nice and nice “.

Of course, Chastain doesn’t break the watermelon every day. He celebrates the celebration by winning the race and announcing it to the big sponsors, even though he recently made an exception when a student asked him to celebrate the end of the final exam to break a watermelon.

He also knows that after the victories, the fans want to break the watermelons too.

“We won the Xfinity race at Daytonan a few years ago, and I think we probably got 30 out of it,” Chastain said. “After that race all night, exploding with people all over the field. I try, if we have extras, to let other people go, because that’s nice.

“Everyone knows what that means. That means we won. Sunday night [after the Talladega win], early Monday morning, I’m opening a video of some of my friends I’m watching. That’s really nice. ”

On a strange tour, Chastain knows that there are watermelons that don’t eat, don’t break, and actually sit for as long as possible.

I gave him an autograph piece of watermelon, ”he said.

Between his two Cup victories, Chastain can’t pick his favorite watermelon-smash after the race.

“I can’t put COTA or Talladega ahead of each other,” he said. “They were both pretty good.”

But he is learning the key to a good smash.

“The top of the car. The secret for me is to climb higher. I’m pretty low, so I’m going to get off the ground. [and] It’s better to have more throwing distance. ‘

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What to see

This weekend, the truck race at Knoxville Raceway, and it remains to be seen whether the race is an improvement on last year’s disappointing event, which never found its rhythm among the warnings. In fact, almost 45% of the race was run.

If it weren’t for a better show this time around, it would be hard to argue for a third truck race in Knoxville.

Thinking out loud

NASCAR announced on Sunday that Clash will return to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum next year. Exposition on February 5, NASCAR will once again have to build a temporary racetrack at the iconic sports arena.

As I wrote after the event, this is a good move. NASCAR probably saw things that it wanted to improve after this year’s event, and moving to another facility to build a track would make it difficult for NASCAR to assess changes, format, track construction, and so on.

If NASCAR wants to make a big event even better, returning to the Coliseum for another year is a good thing.

Social focus

They said

“I’m not surprised we’re a winning race team. I wouldn’t have started this project if I hadn’t thought about it, really believing that there is a chance to build a new race team that could win this sport. It happened very quickly. That was a surprise.” – Justin Marks Trackhouse Owner

Bob Pockrass has spent decades in motorsport, including the last 30 Daytona 500s. He joined FOX Sports in 2019 after working for ESPN, Sporting News, NASCAR Scene and The (Daytona Beach) News-Journal. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @bobpockrass. Looking for more NASCAR content? Sign up for Bob Pockrass for the FOX Sports NASCAR Newsletter!


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