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Naval Air Station hosts 11th annual speed festival

By Lance Cpl. Austin Goacher | | September 28, 2008

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Fleet Week San Diego and Naval Base Coronado hosted the 11th Annual Coronado Speed Festival Sept. 27 and 28.

The two-day event, which was free for active-duty service members and their families, featured hundreds of race cars in action and on display.

In preparation for the races, a portion of the flight line was turned into a 1.6 mile track. Various cars from the 1920s and other automotive generations participated in several races throughout the weekend.

Car clubs from throughout the area also showed up at the event, bringing a variety of muscle and exotic cars.

Automotive fans flocked by the thousands to the event to take pictures and have an up-close view of the rare and unusual cars including various Porsches, Ferraris, McLarens, Shelbys and more.

Along with the vintage cars, some “drifters” made their home on the flight line for the weekend. Drift racers conducted demonstrations of the racing style, taking tight turns and spinning out while putting on a show for the crowd.

The garage area was also open so visitors could take an in-depth look at how some of the vehicles work.  They could talk to drivers and view both the car and read about the cars’ racing careers.

The event also served to open the doors of NAS North Island to San Diegans.

“We’re honored to host this exciting Fleet Week event,” said Vice Adm. Tom Kilcline, the commander of Naval Air Forces, in a message for the festival. “Fleet Week San Diego affords us the opportunity to share the heritage and culture of our great sea service with the San Diego community.”

Naval Air Forces added to the festivities by providing fly overs and static displays.

The aircraft featured at the show were all from the San Diego area.

Fleet Week San Diego works to provide recognition to service members in the San Diego area by helping coordinating free events throughout the year including the Speed Festival, the Red Bull Air Races and the Marine Corps Recruit Depot Boot Camp Challenge.

For more information on upcoming Fleet Week activities visit the Fleet Week San Diego Web site at www.fleetweeksandiego.org.


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