Rain or Shine, Pennsylvania 400 Speeds into the Poconos

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LONG POND -- Pocono Raceway in Long Pond is flooded with NASCAR fans ready to kick off race weekend. Thousands of people showed up to the track ahead of Sunday's Pennsylvania 400 race at Long Pond. Many people are planning to stay the whole weekend.

Bright and early Friday morning, thousands of campers and tents were being set up at Pocono Raceway. Fans are very excited to get the weekend started, but they are a little nervous about the weather. There were some drizzles early on, but Newswatch 16 found some die hard fans who are prepared for anything.

In a sea of campers, a school bus covered with NASCAR flags and its very own grandstand is sure to catch anyone's eye. The crew from Jim Thorpe are ready and waiting to watch their favorite NASCAR driver take on the tricky triangle at the Pennsylvania 400.

"Oh, it's fun. It's so nice that it is only 20 minutes from our house, so we don't have to travel like a lot of people do," said Damon Edwards.

We caught up with fans as they were putting a tarp up on their canopy. With rain in the forecast, some fans are not taking any chances.

The school bus has been to plenty of races. The people inside tell us they have battled the elements before, so in case rain comes, they are ready for it.

"It puts a damper on race weekend, but as Damon said, we have enough shelter and we will have a good time whether it rains or not," said Joe Schatz.

"We have extra clothes in case we play in the rain. We have tarps and canopies," added Colby McHugh.

For some fans, the weather won't wash out their party. The fans on the school bus have been going to NASCAR races for years. Their school bus is nearly 40 years old.

"It's been to a lot of races here. It's been to Talladega, Daytona and Watkins Glen," said McHugh of the bus.

Other fans tell us rain or shine, they are looking forward to a fun weekend ahead. "I mean, this is how it always is at Pocono so you just take it as it comes," said Edwards.

The Pennsylvania 400 race doesn't take place until Sunday at 1:30 p.m. Fans are keeping their fingers crossed that the weather will hold up throughout the weekend.

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