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Scout Days Add to Excitement of Roar Before the Rolex 24

Scouts Have Chance to Camp Inside Daytona International Speedway for Two Nights, Take in All Track Action and More


The Roar Before the Rolex 24 is an annual racing activity that teams, drivers and fans look forward to in kicking off the motorsports season. An integral part of the Roar weekend is back again this year as Scout Days returns to Daytona International Speedway.

Scout Days provides the unique opportunity for Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts and Eagle Scouts to get an up-close experience to the racing activities taking place Jan. 19-21 at DIS by camping with their packs or dens inside the facility for two nights. In addition to watching the on-track action featuring the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge and IMSA VP Racing SportsCar Challenge, Scouts have the chance to meet drivers and team members, walk Daytona’s pit lane and part of the track, participate in a Pinewood Derby, attend a STEMWERX mobile education lab that uses motorsports as a backdrop to learn more about STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), and even go fishing on Lake Lloyd located in the infield.

Registrations are still being accepted to attend this year’s Scout Days. Click the link here for more information. contributor Holly Cain wrote the following story highlighting last year’s Scout Days:


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The tents were scattered around Daytona International Speedway’s famous infield, grouped in “packs” and “dens.” Smoke wafted from the campsites, the unmistakable smell of bacon cooking on grills in the foggy, early morning.


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IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship cars roared by on the Daytona International Speedway road course only yards away. But even in the brisk January weather, groups of Cub Scouts, Girls Scouts, Boy Scouts and Eagle Scouts were already up, tossing a frisbee or eating breakfast or climbing into the grandstands – so many eager to watch the cars on track.


Scout Days, an annual Daytona weekend camping experience during the Roar Before the Rolex 24, was a mutual education opportunity. The scouts were obviously and completely enamored with the chance to get up close to race cars, to meet drivers and to do all that while also camping with friends and family. And the speedway, the race drivers and race teams were eager to share the insights and highlights of the sport they love.


“Scout Days are incredibly important to us at Daytona International Speedway as we help welcome the next generation of motorsports fans to the facility,” said Daytona International Speedway President Frank Kelleher.


“They get to walk on the track, take part in STEMWERX workshops, race in a Pinewood Derby, explore the garages and get up close and personal with drivers and cars. The scouts and their families make memories that will last a lifetime, and we know that only strengthens the fanbase for IMSA and all other series that race at DIS.”


Admittedly, many of the young people attending the event had never seen a race before, much less gotten that close to the action.


The scouts were able to sign their name on the famous Daytona International Speedway start/finish line, tour the team garages and walk the track’s famous pit lane. And in the ultimate of role reversals, the scouts even held their Pinewood Derby on site with IMSA drivers in the audience cheering them on.


“This is easily one of the coolest things I’ve ever done,’’ said 13-year-old Sophie Conjura, a Girl Scout from Indialantic, Florida. “I’ve never been to the Daytona speedway. I really like racing in general and this is awesome.


“I’ll be back,’’ the eighth grader promised with a huge grin.


One of the things these young scouts – the boys and the girls – were most impressed with is the ability and accessibility to compete in racing no matter your gender. As so many professional racers remind, “a car doesn’t know if its driver is male or female.” And this year’s Rolex 24 At Daytona starting grid was quite diverse with drivers including sports car veteran Katherine Legge, her teammate Sheena Monk and even the Iron Dames Lamborghini team comprised completely of women drivers.


For 18-year-old college freshman Skylar Beichner, breaking barriers is a role she’s actually quite familiar with. Beichner, at Daytona with Scouts BSA Troop 85 from Lake City, Florida, is a female Eagle Scout – one of a select few hundred female Eagle Scouts – and the first from Columbia County, Florida, to achieve this highest rank attainable in the Scouts’ Boy Scouts of America.


She was especially eager to watch – and cheer on – the women on the Rolex 24 grid. Their drive is something she can relate to.


“They are breaking barriers,’’ Beichner said, “so I hope that the women in the race achieve their goal through winning or getting a top place.


“I understand. My family and friends encouraged me to continue for it (Eagle Scout) and going through and taking it step by step and knowing I can get there, saying, ‘I know I can do this’ and not to overthink it.’’ Beichner added. “I’m sure that’s what these (women) racers did too.’’


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Beyond the special and unique opportunity for these scouts to get up close to the IMSA drivers and their cars, the Roar weekend provided a chance for scouts to be exposed to a sport that not only values but depends on education, open minds and competitive spirits.


“The whole premise of scouts, especially with all the merit badges, is to give the scouts experience in different avenues they may not get a chance to,’’ said Sam Middleton, an assistant scout master for Scouts BSA Troop 85 of Lake City.


“Many of these boys and girls would never get a chance to actually be at a first-class facility like the Daytona International Speedway or see an event of this magnitude or speak to the guys that work on high-performance machinery like these GT cars. This may lead to their interest in being an automotive mechanic or a mechanical engineer, a civil engineer or a surveyor or a reporter. You never know.


“The whole thing is to lead them to open avenues so they would know where they want to go in life. And that’s across the spectrum. Race, age, sex, it doesn’t matter. It’s really amazing to come out and see this.’’