Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Turnout swells for rain-delayed Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — Fans began lining up before gates opened at 9 a.m. Monday for the delayed finale of the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

After a day's delay because of rain, the race began at 10 a.m.

Crowds were sparse for the early part of this unusual workday race, with a few hundred in the stands minutes before the start. But by noon, hundreds more had joined them, filling the main grandstand.

Many of them were drawn by the free admission, even for reserved grandstand seating.

They included Patrick Swift, 43, who said this was his first Grand Prix. "I'm here just because it's free,'' he said.

Tony Barrett of Clearwater was there Sunday when the race was called off due to rain. He returned Monday because he heard it was "supposed to clear up.''

Katie O'Connor, 4, watched as the cars raced past her family. She kept a lookout for Danica Patrick's car, pointing and cheering from her grandmother's arms as she passed.

"I like her," she told her mother, Jen O'Connor, a teacher from Pembroke Pines. They were at the race with her parents, Marcia and Mike Smith of St. Petersburg.

Marcia said she hasn't missed a Grand Prix since its start. She took her children to the race when they grew up and volunteered with her husband.

"This was going to be our first year to miss," she said, but they couldn't pass it up with the promise of free admission.

Crews were out early moving standing water off the course after a heavy predawn downpour Monday.

Those who sat in grandstand seats were asked to be respectful of anyone who showed up.

The city encouraged fans to park in the BayWalk garage at Second Street between First and Second avenues N, or the South Core Parking Garage, with entry from First Avenue S between First and Second streets. Although the race was free, daily rates applied in the parking garages.

Turnout swells for rain-delayed Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg 03/29/10 [Last modified: Monday, March 29, 2010 2:39pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Jeb Bush back in the hunt for the Marlins, now opposing Derek Jeter

    Blogs

    Associated Press:

    Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has switched sides in pursuit of the Miami Marlins, and he’s trying to beat out former teammate Derek Jeter.

  2. The Lightning's 2017-18 road jersey
  3. Legalized medical marijuana signed into law by Rick Scott

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed into law a broader medical marijuana system for the state, following through on a promise he made earlier this month.

    Gov. Rick Scott signed legislation on Friday that legalizes medical marijuana in Florida.
  4. Lego T-rex and scores of other brick sculptures free to see in Tampa

    News

    TAMPA — Envision the effort that went into building a basic Lego model with your kids. Now imagine arranging the same toys to look like the Mona Lisa or an 80,020-piece Tyrannosaurus rex.

    Eliana Goldberg, 5, of Wesley Chapel looks at a Lego sculpture called "Everlasting" at The Art of the Brick exhibit, which opened Friday in Tampa and runs through Sept. 4. [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]
  5. Rick Scott signs medical marijuana, 37 other bills into law

    Blogs

    Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed into law a broader medical marijuana system for the state, following through on a promise he made earlier this month.

    Gov. Rick Scott