This weekend is a reminder that Ross Chastain won this race a year ago. He celebrated with an EPIC watermelon toss 251 feet up. The COTA observation tower is a great focal point at the track. It also makes for a nice staging area for watermelon hijinks from the NASCAR driver.
I know that folks might be getting tired of Ross Chastain and his melon antics. But I’m not! You can call me simple minded you can say whatever you want, I’m going to watch a fruit splatter on pavement, especially from a couple of hundred feet up or so.
Perhaps Chastain will put this gimmick behind him one day, but for now, he’s setting in as NASCAR’s Gallagher. Trackhouse Racing got a few watermelons ready and even got a special tarp just for the event.
When you return to the place you got your first win, you have to do it up big. If they’re going to let you just smash stuff on the ground, why not take them up on it? I’m not sure how many watermelons actually took the plunge, but I’m sure there is one still safe in the hauler, ready to be thrown down from the car in case of a win.
Now let’s get a look at how it went from on the ground, courtesy of Jeff Gluck.
Stand clear of rhe Melon Man’s splat zone! 🍉 💥♬ It’s Called: Freefall (Sped Up) – Rainbow Kitten Surprise
If this isn’t what NASCAR is all about, then I don’t know what is. Ross Chastain is hoping to get one more smash before the weekend is over.
Can Ross Chastain Repeat With New Rules?
Things aren’t just as simple as getting another win this year at COTA. Ross Chastain has shown that he has the speed to compete up front again this season. But that’s different on the road. He was fast and drove hard the entire race.
However, we have a new package on these cars, the same one from the short tracks. There are also not going to be any stage cautions. Stages are going to be counted, but they will not stop the race to pit. This could change the strategy so much for teams this season.
So, things are going to be different. Even if Ross Chastain has speed, he might not have the long-run speed to keep up, especially with no stage restarts.
I really think that this race is going to come down to Chastain and AJ Allmendinger again if the eventual winner doesn’t just drive away with this thing by a large gap.