28 January 2013

Racing Presidents Get Another Runner

One of the fun things that goes on at Nationals Park each game is the 4th inning Race of the Presidents (sponsored by GEICO). The tradition of this race started in 2005 on the scoreboard at RFK when the newly relocated Expos now Nationals moved into DC. The original race was sponsored by PNC Bank and had the common Dollar Presidents racing in go-carts the Presidents featured were: George Washington ($1), Abraham Lincoln ($5), and Alexander Hamilton ($10) (I wonder why they didn't have Ulysses S. Grant ($20) in the race? Cheapos). The next season 2006 the race was still on the video screen but was changed from a car race to a footrace and now had the Mount Rushmore Four: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt. Then mid-season after the all-star break the race became a "live" event with runners in "mascot" costumes of the "Rushmore Four" with huge foam heads (which often are the cause of some embarrassing falls). Sometimes the 'Dents race in the period suits we are used to seeing them in, but I think most of the time now they race in their own Nats Uniforms with their uniform number being that of their presidency (George 1, Tom 3, Abe 16, Teddy 26 and now Bill 27).
Well for the 2013 season the team decided to add a fifth President to the race. The choice was announced at Natsfest on Saturday 26 January 2013. The identity was a big mystery, after some speculation of which President is was; guesses ranged from FDR to JFK to even still living presidents Clinton and Obama. The decision was made and William Howard Taft "Bill" will join George, Tom, Abe and Teddy. It makes the most sense considering Taft threw out the very first ceremonial "Presidential first pitch" on opening day, and supposedly is responsible for the 7th inning stretch.

Racing President's Sites: (and related sites/posts)
For more race details Wikipedia Presidents Race Page.
Let Teddy Win Blog
Nationals Mascots Racing Presidents
Nationals Mascots Racing Presidents Appearances
Racing Presidents Standings
Washington Post Announcement

1 comment:

unclemoe said...

Yes! I love Taft. Anyone who gets stuck in a bathtub has got my vote.