Grid League at the Garden: My Thoughts on a New Sport
By John Gentry
The sport of Grid Racing has been growing in popularity over the past few years. I have seen it grow from my own backyard into a very large and well organized event with many competitors all across North America. There are even competitions held internationally!
Some might call it “fad” or “niche”, but I see it as something that will only continue to grow and develop.
I am not going to go into too much detail about how the sport works; I think that you would already be familiar with most of the basics. What I want to do instead is give some insight into why I love it so much. For me, it’s because there is no other sport where you get to play a part in shaping your own destiny.
You don’t just watch someone else race around a track and hope they make good decisions while following them like a drone. Instead, you get to participate in making those decisions yourself.
You could win or lose, but ultimately it doesn’t matter if you didn’t do everything right. Because of this aspect, the whole experience is so much fun and rewarding. If you haven’t had the chance yet to try out grid racing (or any sport for that matter), then I highly recommend giving it a shot!
It really isn’t hard at all once you learn how to do it properly. You don’t need to have any sort of experience or special knowledge. Anybody can do it!
The other major reason why I like the sport is because it provides a unique opportunity for me as a journalist. It’s fun to write about new and upcoming technologies and events that most people are not yet familiar with. I get to share knowledge and information that not everyone has yet.
I also see myself as somewhat of a “story-teller” in that I like to paint a vivid picture of what it’s really like to be there. I guess you could call me a professional dreamer! I can’t think of any other sport where the experience is so unique and personal that words alone cannot do it justice. It really has to be experienced first hand in order to understand it fully.
A few years ago, I heard about a new sport starting up in the United States that was starting to create a lot of buzz. This sport was very different from anything else out there at the time. This sport was called Grid Racing and it looked absolutely brutal.
I remember seeing a few videos about it and thinking to myself that this was madness.
Normal racing games were one thing, but this?
This looked life threatening! The cars were going faster than anything I had ever seen and the slightest mistake would probably mean major injury or death.
I remember at the time wondering if this new sport would ever make its way over to where I lived. At first, I didn’t really think it would. It seemed so new and so different that I thought it would take a while to catch on.
Boy was I wrong! The popularity grew and grew and it didn’t take long before our local stadium got one of the new high-tech tracks built and started hosting races.
I was living in an area where the sport was becoming increasingly popular, but I still wasn’t sure if I wanted to go watch them live. I mean I had seen videos of people crashing and burning and it didn’t look like much fun. Not to mention the danger involved.
However, my curiosity got the better of me and I finally decided to go check it out for myself.
So there I was, sitting in the stands with all the other people. The race was about to begin and even from up in the stands you could hear the cars roaring down towards you. The smell of burnt rubber and gasoline filled the air as the engines roared to life.
The three cars took off and I found myself clutching the seat and leaning forward in anticipation as the took the first turn. The g-forces pressed me back into my seat as they rounded the first turn at what seemed like supersonic speeds. By the second turn I was leaning forward to see what was going on, and by the fourth turn I was standing up to see over all the people in front of me.
This was definitely different from anything I had ever seen before…
This continued for about another 10-15 minutes as I watched these crazy cars race around the track at seemingly impossible speeds. None of them had crashed yet, but I could tell it was just a matter of time. By the final lap there were two cars left and they were side by side going around the final corner towards the finish line.
The crowd was on the edge of their seats as we watched these two cars go all out in an attempt to win. One of the cars pulled slightly ahead, but then seemed to loose control and just skim the wall as it shot past the finish line.
Sources & references used in this article:
The race game: Sport and politics in South Africa by D Booth – 1998 – books.google.com
Sport and the Environment: Considering Sustainable Thoughts by R Welters – Towards a Sustainable Philosophy of Endurance Sport, 2019 – Springer
In the American grid: Modern poetry and the suburbs by P Monacell – jml: Journal of Modern Literature, 2011 – JSTOR
lit May Be j by MALF AS, G MENTOR – epublications.regis.edu
The unlevel playing field: A documentary history of the African American experience in sport by DK Wiggins, PB Miller – 2003 – books.google.com
Do-it-yourself or do-it-with? The regenerative life skills of off-grid home builders by P Vannini, J Taggart – cultural geographies, 2014 – journals.sagepub.com
Making home, making identity: Asian garden making in New Zealand, 1850s–1930s by J John Beattie – Studies in the History of Gardens & Designed …, 2011 – Taylor & Francis
Garden cities 21: creating a livable urban environment. by JO Simonds – 1994 – cabdirect.org