Military flyovers are just as much a part of major sporting events in America as beer and hot dogs.
It's seems like a long-standing tradition and that's what makes sporting events, well, an event. It's the tradition and pageantry that keeps fans coming out to stadiums and parks. Will they be missed? Sure. Major League Baseball's opening day won't be the same without them. Are they a necessity? Not really.
Fans at a NASCAR races are already on the edge of their seats with excitement. Most wouldn't care if you played Kenny Loggins' "Danger Zone" and flew a kite in its place. The excitement will always be there. It just won't be as loud or a much fun.
They certainly would be missed at NASCAR races, where the flyovers — which typically occur just as the final words of the national anthem are being belted out — now are as much a traditional part of the pre-race festivities as Jim Nabors singing "Back Home Again in Indiana" before the Indianapolis 500.
Before the Daytona 500, the pilots of the U.S. Air Force's Thunderbirds even held their own news conference to talk about flying over Daytona International Speedway. Sure, this is not the most pressing issue facing NASCAR or sports in general and we're talking about a moment that lasts only a few seconds. Part of the thrill of attending a race in person would be lost.
We live near an Air Force base, so jet noise is as common as a barking dog. But everything comes to a halt as we stretch our necks to watch. In awe.
Yet that moment was nothing compared to a military flyover. If you never seen one live, it's an incredible moment that never fails to get the fans juiced.
But in this economic climate, it's simply not worth the price tag. And let's face it, after four or five hours of tailgating, fans will get just as juiced over a dog catching a Frisbee (especially if a dropping is involved).