7:00 a.m. ? Rise and Shine, Ashveville, NC.
It was a rough morning getting out of bed; although normally I?m up later so I guess every morning is rough. We had a 8:30am flight from Asheville on the team plane, a Cessna King Air turboprop, which holds 12 people. Usually we get a good game of cards going, today I think I was sound asleep by the time we took off. I literally woke up in Chicago with the guys laughing at me because I had drooled the whole way there. That?s not good either, anytime the guys get one up on you it usually takes a while to live it down!

10:00 a.m. ? Touch Down in Chicago.
Having never been to Turtle Wax before, our group was faced with finding the way to the headquarters. That always seems to be an adventure. No matter how good the directions are to any given place it?s a crap shoot as to whether or not you get there without getting lost. Jeff, our pilot and myself took over the navigation and did a decent job until we realized that Turtle Wax was on an Avenue, not a Street. The detour wasn?t too bad, probably 10 minutes or so out of the way. The important thing was that we still arrived with time to spare.

10:30 a.m. ? Turtle Wax Headquarters.
The Twax festivities didn?t start officially until 11:30am where we were set to meet and greet all the Twax employees. In the meantime, everyone on the team were treated to a nice lunch catered by Nick?s BBQ. Shortly after that the first round of employees came out to the show car and trailer for autographs. That involved a short speech by myself, Andy Petree and general manager Steve Barkdoll. Since all the employees can?t come out at once, which would shut down the company, they had three different waves of employees. That of course meant three speeches ? a chance to improve each one, or of course a chance to botch each one. I think I did a pretty good job and it got a little easier by the third round.

1:30 p.m. ? Tour of the Turtle Wax Production Facility.
I?ve always liked factory tours and seeing how a product is made and packaged. With my family involved in manufacturing, I enjoy that stuff a lot. Turtle Wax makes so many different products and they are all produced inside their building. It?s not like they outsource any of them. From wax to cleaners to the Marvel Mystery Oil; it?s all made and shipped out the door at headquarters. We saw the inventory systems and box printing, as well as all the big vats mixing classic Super Hard Shell Wax. The bottling lines were my favorite part of the tour - that?s good stuff there. Bottles coming down the line getting filled with product then labeled, capped and boxed. They even let us try our hand at putting spray caps on bottles as they shot down the line. Seems easy until they turn the wick up and get that line really moving!

4:00 p.m. ? Off to the Hotel.
Since tomorrow is such a big day, tonight probably won?t be too exciting. We have to head out to the track and pick up our bags, then check into the hotel. Normally I?ll have some dinner with the team, then try and be in bed by 10pm or so. Not that tomorrow night isn?t a big deal either, I?ll probably pack it in relatively since it?s the night before the race.

Click here for more information on Menard's Tropicana Twister 300 race weekend diary.

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