The camping experience at Charlotte Motor Speedway is one of the most memorable and unique in all of sports. With a venue that boasts the world’s largest HDTV and non-stop on-track action at almost 200 mph during three of the biggest races of the NASCAR season, fans travel near and far to take in The Greatest Place To See The Race.

Bobby and Betsy Tesseneer, of Mooresboro, N.C., have been camping at Hellmann’s campground for the last decade for both the May and October NASCAR races. Located outside Turn 4 of the legendary 1.5-mile superspeedway, the Hellmann’s campground is a family-friendly campsite offering easy access to all the events during the 10 greatest days of racing.

For the last five years, the Tesseneers have had one extra family member accompanying them to the races, their dog Axl. 

“He has been coming to the races since he was six months old,” said Betsy. “Everybody in the campground has seen him grow up. The other campers always have treats for him no matter where he goes. He has become quite the celebrity.”

While the camping memories for the Tesseneers’ remain endless, there is one particular story Betsy Tesseneer remembers fondly. In 2008, during the May races, the long-time Ryan Newman fan had her racing fantasy become a reality.

“Some of (Newman’s) sponsor representatives were working in the campgrounds,” said Betsy Tesseneer. “They noticed my Ryan Newman flag and they stopped and asked if I would be around later. So a few minutes passed and we were all outside and that same golf cart appeared again along with an SUV. The door opened and Ryan Newman appeared. He came and talked to all of us for about 15 minutes, then gave us suite passes to watch the race.”

The Tesseneers give back to the campground each and every year. They cook the ultimate race day feast for up to 40 adults and children from the Shelby Fire Department. The meal includes homemade ice cream and s’mores for the kids.

“I was a Shelby fireman and loved to bring out all my former co-workers to enjoy the races,” said Bobby. “They are such a diversity of race fans and first-timers, and we want to show them a great time.”

The Tesseneers’ favorite part of camping at Charlotte Motor Speedway is seeing the friends that she and Bobby have made over the years.

“The people that are there year after year,” said Betsy Tesseneer. “The friendships that we have made, we look forward to seeing everyone each year.”

Camping is still available for all of the exciting races at Charlotte Motor Speedway this year, which include the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race on May 19 and the Coca-Cola 600 on May 27. To purchase a premium infield spot with views of the world’s largest HDTV or a spot at any of the campgrounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway, call the ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS (3267). RV rentals are also available.

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