50-Year Fans of Charlotte Motor Speedway Recognized During Bank of America 500 Pre-Race – Twenty-nine of Charlotte Motor Speedway’s biggest fans who have been coming to events for half a century were recognized during pre-race ceremonies tonight. Five of those will be in attendance and will be on the pre-race stage and all 29 fans will be recognized on the world’s largest HDTV before the green flag.

Each of these honored fans has been attending races at Charlotte Motor Speedway since the first the first World 600 ran in 1960. (It became the Coca-Cola 600 in 1985.) In addition to participating in the pre-race festivities, each of the 50-Year Fans will receive an official 50-Year Fan credential and commemorative lanyard.

Those attending include Rick Connor, from Shelby, N.C., Robert Misenheimer from Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Ron Pender from Cary, N.C.; Riley Rau from Woodstock, Va.; and Ray Warren from North Wilkesboro, N.C.

The 50-Year Fan acknowledgement program is part of a new initiative by Charlotte Motor Speedway to recognize and reward repeat fans. Other longtime fans who have been coming to events at the speedway for five, 10, 20 and more years can expect additional details to come on the new recognition program when it officially launches in 2012.

“We have the best and most devoted fans in all of motorsports,” said Marcus Smith, president and general manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway. “There are so many fans that make Charlotte Motor Speedway a big part of their yearly vacation and entertainment plans. It’s time we recognize them for coming back year after year.”