There's a longstanding superstition that peanuts in the shell are bad luck in NASCAR. David Ragan laughs at your superstitions. Laughs! Well, maybe not too loud, but still. This weekend, he'll be driving the No. 34 Peanut Patch Ford Fusion. Peanuts, as you may know, are a toxic superstition for many in NASCAR. This, then, is Ragan's car:
"Five hundred miles at Atlanta is one of the longest races of the year," Ragan said. "It seems like it goes on forever. It's a tough race, but I always look forward to it because it's in my backyard. I love being back home in Georgia." Ragan placed 12th last weekend at Bristol.
Snopes.com, the best source for verifying or debunking rumors, has a lengthy article on the way that the peanut superstition may have begun: peanut shells were found in the wreckage of two fatal accidents in 1937. True? Well, true enough for NASCAR drivers. (Also of note in that Snopes article, a superstition worth remembering: green cars are bad news. You know exactly how to complete this thought, don't you?)
Ragan will join the other 42 drivers in the AdvoCare 500 on Sunday night. We'll see soon enough how much room they give him and his peanuts on the track.
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- David Ragan