DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Ever go on a Sunday drive and get frustrated by the car ahead of you going at a glacial pace?
Patrick Lindsey knows just how it feels after an excursion through the Daytona International Speedway infield during the Rolex 24 At Daytona sports-car race.
Lindsey, competing in a Park Place Motorsports Porsche, said his axle was popping in and out, so he drove off the track and asked a guard to open a gate, figuring he could limp to the garage and not bring out a caution flag.
He soon found himself in a crowd of people taking in the sights of the morning as the 24-hour race entered its final hours.
"People are walking and having their morning coffee, and there's a race car behind them," Lindsey said. "The cars this year are a lot quieter, and I'll be damned if we don't have a horn. There's nothing you can do but just wait for them to figure out there's a race car there."
Things took an even stranger turn when he ended up on the access road in the infield amid fans driving in and out of the track. It wasn't an easy trip.
With the damage, Lindsey couldn't go much faster than 10 mph, and fans on trams were yelling at him, "C'mon, hurry, hurry." Lindsey went as fast as he could, frustrated as he was held up in the gridlocked Daytona infield roads.
"People are coming through the tunnel, and they're looking at cars going around on the banking, they're looking at people tailgating, they're looking everywhere but their rearview mirror," Lindsey said. "They have no idea anything could be coming up behind them.
"I might have made, like, an unkind gesture to the first car that didn't get out of the way, and then I was like: 'Someone is going to get this on camera or something, so I better just be polite. I don't want to embarrass myself.'"
Lindsey almost did something he probably would have regretted when he wanted to give a slow car in front of him a little nudge.
"I was seriously thinking about tapping the Acura that was just cruising in front of me, and I literally thought, 'Do I have to stop and talk to the guy after I hit him?'" Lindsey said. "Technically he signed a waiver to get in here, right? So if he gets hit by a race car, it's kind of his own bad."
The trek through the infield sparked jokes on social media, and Lindsey said he heard from a sponsor who told him, "Hey, that was awesome."
"Everybody, I guess, had a good laugh about it unbeknownst to me," the 33-year-old California driver said. "It's funny because we won [the] Petit [Le Mans race] at the end of last year, and people are like, 'Yeah, super, good for you.'
"But I drive through the freaking paddock on the street and people are like, 'YEAH!'"