Get Your Motor Running

Dan Lanigan, Mammoth Photography

In February’s

Texas Monthly

, Michael Hall described the “inland sea of beer,” mountains of litter, and fortresses of merchandizing booths that surrounded the

Texas Motor Speedway

-- a former cow pasture outside of Fort Worth that became the eleventh largest city in the state during November’s Dixie 500. If this enthusiasm spreads to non-NASCAR racing,

Reliant Stadium

can expect commotion that will make the


seem like a tea party at this weekend’s

Grand Prix of Houston


Even if the Grand Prix can’t beat the tailgating that accompanies a NASCAR event, it certainly keeps up in terms of jaw-dropping automobiles. Saturday’s Lone Star Grand Prix will feature cars from the American Le Mans Series, based on those outfitted for France’s legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans race. And at Sunday’s big event, Grand Prix of Houston, all eyes will no doubt be on the Panoz DP01, the recently introduced engineering marvel that helped Team Australia’s Will Power win the Las Vegas Grand Prix early this month. They have all the oomph of anything driven by Junior or Gordon -- just without so many brand logos. – Nick Keppler

Just as the Grand Prix proves you don’t need NASCAR for 200-mile-per-hour action, Mildred’s Umbrella proves you don’t need a well-polished script for a great night of theatre, Roy Wood, Jr. proves you don’t need West Virginia incest jokes to be funny and C. Patrick proves you don’t need quiet, solitude and the absence of a loud bar to create a painting -- all in this week’s Night & Day® section.

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