October 02, 2009
The NASCAR Hall of Fame is one step closer to its May 11, 2010 opening day with the placement this week of the first artifact in the 150,000 square-foot entertainment attraction.
The iconic bright orange Unocal 76 spotter ball traveled on a flat-bed trailer from a restoration company in Florida to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Monday. It arrived in three sections, and the construction teams worked on assembly and placement of the ball for three days, completing the project late Wednesday night. Due to its immense size, this item had to be placed much earlier than other artifacts, which are scheduled for placement after the New Year.
This is one of the four spotter balls first installed at Daytona International Speedway in 1969. At the time, the enclosed platform replaced open platforms and offered a better view and more protection from the elements for officials and broadcast spotters. Driver spotters used other locations around the track.