As has been intoned in previous articles, it is never too early for fans to talk about the future. On September 10, 2016 the Virginia Tech Hokies will meet the Tennessee Volunteers at the Bristol Motor Speedway in Tennessee. The venue itself is capable of seating 160,000 fans. This matchup has, affectionately, been referred to as the Battle at Bristol. Because the venue is so large it has been argued that this match-up could, potentially, host the largest audience to ever witness a NCAA football game.
On Tuesday, August 11, 2015, members of the Xfinity NASCAR Racing Series stopped by Virginia Tech to engage with the football players during their fall practice and promote next year’s matchup against Tennessee. Richard Childress Racing driver Ty Dillon was present and introduced the Richard Childress Racing car for the VT Hokies football team to explore.
Richard Childress Racing, often referred to as RCR, participates in NASCAR’s Xfinity racing seriers. Xfinity is generally referred to as the minor league circuit of NASCAR, which can trace its history back to 1950. Mr. Dillon is currently a respectable third place in the NASCAR Xfinity series, and seeks to improve on the impressive standings during the remainder of the Xfinity season.
Dillon spent time with VT Hokie football players, during practice. While participating in the practice Ty Dillon made a trade. He dealt his racing suit for a helmet that promoted VT in the future Battle at Bristol. In addition to receiving the helmet, Dillon received a special gift from VT head football coach, Frank Beamer.
Coach Beamer presented Dillon with a special jersey that was labeled #7 and had a message included for the driver. On the jersey the words, "I love Regan" were printed. It was a joke based on Dillon’s interaction with #7 car driver, Regan Smith, and an incident that occurred at the Watkins Glen road course. Dillon stated that he knew all about Michael Vick and the significance of number seven at VPI. Double entendre can be so much fun!
Several VT players, including QB Michael Brewer, explored the RCR car when they made their visit to Lane Stadium. We still await the start of the 2015 season, but clearly the Battle at Bristol is already something that Virginia Tech is already excited to participate in during the 2016 season.