Main / Anatomy of a car / The track / The drivers / A fan's guide / Parking & area info / Panoramic photos

printer version

Souvenirs move quickly, not just for CART drivers

More than shirts can be had, too: Bikini tops, earplugs, and autographed replica helmets are available.

[Times photo: Dirk Shadd]
Carol Joyce sells merchandise out of her trailer, called Girls Wanna Race II, at the Grand Prix.

By SHARON GINN
© St. Petersburg Times
published February 22, 2003


ST. PETERSBURG -- There were few places to escape the heat for racing fans attending the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on Friday, but Vera Wells of Brooksville found one: inside the dressing room of Prime Time Racing's clothing and souvenir trailer.

Wells emerged a few minutes later wearing one of the company's $30 checkered-flag style underwire bikini tops, visibly relieved that she had found a way to cool off.

"It's nice and cool. I had to buy something that was airy," Wells said. "I had a tank top on, and it was just too much."

Whatever their racing pleasure -- be it foreign sports cars or '57 Chevys -- fans can find something bearing the likeness of their favorite cars to buy at the Grand Prix.

Beyond those hawking official Grand Prix and CART merchandise, more than a dozen souvenir stands are set up for this weekend's events, with items ranging from $2 earplugs to a $3,750 replica helmet autographed by five-time Formula One champion Michael Schumacher.

"Everybody has their own niche," said Steve Joyce of Prime Time Racing, who reports that his checkered swimsuits (from a triangle top with thong to the far less racy one-piece with wrap) are among his biggest sellers at a variety of racetracks, from CART to NASCAR to Indy Racing League events.

Next door, Speedgear Authentic Racewear sells plenty of Ferrari caps and shirts and Formula One gear.

Speedgear also offers the Schumacher helmet, a copy of one he wore during his 2000 championship season. Lest one think nobody would spend such big bucks at a race, the company sold a $4,500 Schumacher at a race in California last year.

CART merchandise actually is overshadowed by some other items. Michael Andretti left CART for the IRL after last season, but his large, slickly merchandised Andretti Signature souvenir trailer had one of the more prominent spots near the grandstands.

And his items come with an actual signature for fans who timed it properly. He drew a healthy crowd signing fans' purchases, and is scheduled to appear again today around noon.

For another kind of autograph, art enthusiasts can purchase framed and unframed prints by racing artist Randy Owens, whose colorful serigraphs depict races at venues around the country.

Included in the collection are two types of prints bearing his signature that commemorate the 2003 Grand Prix of St. Petersburg ($150 unframed).


Back to the St. Petersburg Grand Prix home page

Today's lineup

  • The roar at their door
  • Two sparkling debuts
  • A new Player's on the scene
  • Rival's sales still strong
  • Souvenirs move quickly, not just for CART drivers
  • Respect from garage comes in her own time
  • Rookies not major cause for concern yet
  • The next Unser takes more gradual path
  • Race-side parkers pay $25
  • Safety crews stand by for race

  • Lightning
  • Lost chances, one lost point
  • Right wing becomes a casualty of victories

  • Rays
  • Veteran pitchers hope they are in right place
  • Bierbrodt earns praise for poise

  • Bucs
  • Gruden: Bucs have plenty of work to do
  • Players may have a ring of their own

  • Other sports

    Grand Prix
  • The roar at their door
  • Two sparkling debuts
  • A new Player's on the scene
  • Rival's sales still strong
  • Souvenirs move quickly, not just for CART drivers
  • Respect from garage comes in her own time
  • Rookies not major cause for concern yet
  • The next Unser takes more gradual path
  • Race-side parkers pay $25
  • Safety crews stand by for race

  • Golf
  • Game change pays off
  • TV analyst strives to improve game
  • Back pain sends Palmer home; tee times moved up
  • Howell leads by one in a day of surprises

  • College basketball
  • Salukis, mid-majors get rare day in sun
  • Suspended Red Raider quits team
  • Hot home team or hot team?
  • Saluki-meter
  • Big man shines at small school

  • NFL
  • QB Palmer not scared to land in Cincinnati

  • Baseball
  • Johnson shut down because of pain in wrist
  • Selig wants talks on ban reopened

  • NHL
  • Islanders end Avalanche's points streak

  • In brief
  • Marshall interested in series with USF

  • Sailing
  • Lack of wind delays Race 4 a second time

  • Boxing
  • Lacy hopes win boosts his ranking

  • NBA
  • McGrady scores 52, sits for fourth

  • Motorsports
  • Weather aids first pole win for Blaney

  • Preps
  • Aggressive defense puts Gaither in final
  • Extra practice pays off for stronger Terrapins
  • Northside shuffles athletic hierarchy
  • Eagles get revenge in shutout
  • Cougars' attackers neutralize Hurricanes
  • Familiar foe sinks Berkeley
  • Warhawks end drought
  • Larson jumper lifts Baptist
  • Crusaders hold off Robinson comeback
  • Showdown set for Lions, Chiefs
  • Spongers outlast Cougars
  • Durant surges past Palm Harbor in OT
  • CCC returns to final four
  • Warhawks end drought
  • Cobras battle No.1 Nease but fall short
  • Gators among final four
  • Pirates play poor at the worst time
  • Pasco charges into title game

  • Outdoors
  • Daily fishing report


  • © Copyright St. Petersburg Times. All rights reserved.