FORT WORTH, Texas (Jan 10, 2017) – On Monday, Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver Ryan Blaney made a promise on Twitter to have lunch with fans that came out to watch the Goodyear Tire test at Texas Motor Speedway.
On Wednesday, he delivered and so did Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage.
Blaney delivered on his promise and Gossage delivered the pizza – two dozen pies in all – to more than 50 passionate NASCAR fans that braved a chilly, windy January afternoon in Fort Worth.
“Thank you so much for coming out. It really means a lot to us to have you here, especially during the work week,” said Blaney, who was among four drivers – Martin Truex Jr., Chase Elliott, and Aric Almirola were the others – in town for a two-day Goodyear Tire test at the speedway. “This is what it’s all about. Hanging out and talking with the fans.”
Blaney spent more than 35 minutes with the fans in the grandstand concourse, sharing stories, eating pizza, posing for photos and signing autographs.
“With Jeff (Gordon) and Dale (Earnhardt Jr.) and Tony (Stewart) retired, people will be looking for someone new to root for,” said Jill Taylor, a resident of nearby Keller who said she was a fan of the sport but of no particular driver. “It’s things like this that Ryan is doing here today that are going to make people cheer for him. You can’t help but like a guy who takes the time to visit with us. It means a lot.”
The 24-year-old Blaney is preparing for his third full season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, but first with Team Penske. He will be driving the No. 12 entry alongside Penske teammates Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano. He arrives from the Wood Brothers Racing organization, where in 2017 he recorded his first career Cup victory and qualified for the NASCAR Playoffs.
Blaney and the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series return to Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday, April 8, for the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 (1 p.m. CT, TV: FOX Sports 1).