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The Legend of Brian Redman's Cat!

There are a lot of different versions about why people are drinking to Brian Redman's Cat. Credit for the Cat has been claimed by various groups; drivers, crew members, every race worker specialty and even some of the more alcoholic spectator groups. Everyone wants to get into the act. Don't believe any of them. Ignore all rumors. Especially the one that says the Cat was invented by corner workers at an emergency drinking meeting of the "Road Racing Roundtable: In the parking lot of Schwartz's in St. Anna, Wisconsin".

Corner workers are damned particular who they raise a glass to. Their toasts are a sign of respect bestowed only to the fastest people like Fangio, Moss, Clark, Donohue, and Brian Redman. All properly conducted Saturday drinking contests follow a pattern. You take turns making a toast. You are expected to toast someone faster than your predecessor. Lately, the toasting seems to always end with a final toast, "Here's to Brian Redman's Cat". The Cat really isn't quicker than Brian, but he is faster than most, especially in the rain (his claws are an advantage). Here now is the straight story:

"The Cat", he didn't have a name in those days (actually, he still doesn't), was first noticed by corner workers at Road America. He lived his entire first life right there at the track. That first life was what started the Legend. We are certain that each of his remaining lives will contribute to the legend and he will take his rightful place in racing history.

When first spotted, he certainly didn't look like legend material. He was apparently booted out of a car as a kitten and grew up wild at Road America, scrounging for his food and fighting for survival. He was a skinny pitiful sight, obviously undernourished and very anti-social. The event was a cold May Drivers School and it was raining. That dumb Cat was standing there, soaked to his skin, watching the racecars, just like the corner workers. He was obviously impressed.

"The Cat" was having a really rough time when he discovered the generosity of corner workers. At lunchtime, eating with them was better than scrounging for food. This was easy; he was well-fed at every corner he visited. He never understood the fact that maybe the amount of food available for cats had something to do with the quality of the lunches. He really learned to love the vulcanized bratwurst with melted Hershey bar on top. He even learned to like the "mystery meat". Eventually, he became tamer and actually permitted a few corner workers to give him an occasional pat on the head. He seemed to enjoy them and their company.

Later, he started drinking with the workers at the end of the day. He found that most corner workers had alcoholic beverages in their survival kits for after the last car. He got into the habit of making the rounds of the corners. He'd have a quick one with anybody who was willing to share.

When he wasn't eating or drinking, he was watching the racecars. He couldn' t hide his admiration for the fastest drivers because he was pretty fast himself. Just like his friends - the workers - he became an ardent fan of Brian Redman. In fact, every time Brian Redman raced at Road America, you could find The Cat hanging around his pit. If you looked real careful, you could see he was listening to and watching Brian's every move. As years went by, The Cat developed two burning ambitions. One was to drink with every corner worker in the country and the other was to beat Brian Redman's time at Road America. He used to work at it at night. If you were at the right place, at the right time, you could see The Cat - who by then was known as "Brian Redman's Cat" - doing hot laps. Gradually, he worked his time down to where he was within a couple seconds of Brian Redman's best time. He probably would have made it if it hadn't been for a tragic, unfortunate accident.

One particular dark night, he had a very fast lap going. He came into Corner 10 right on the ragged edge. Unfortunately, a large deer was asleep in the apex and The Cat hit it at speed. There weren't any corner workers there to help and he did not survive the crash.

The next morning, when the corner workers came out to set up the station for the day, they found his remains. And out of respect for The Cat and Brian Redman, they buried The Cat with a good view of the turn.

Today, at Station 10, you'll find a rather large mound of rocks with a crude cross on top of it. Directly in front of the mound is a granite headstone with the following inscription, "Here Lies Briand Redman's Cat, The Bloodshot Blur with Fur". That is the final resting place of Brian Redman's Cat. When a corner worker is assigned to Corner 10, it is tradition to add one more rock to the pile.

That might have been the end of this legend, except for a strange phenomenon that was noticed shortly after the crash. Whenever corner workers got together for serious partying, The Cat would usually show up after a sufficient number of toasts "To Brian Redman's Cat". That damned Cat would come back for one more drink with his friends, the corner workers. And so, if you are a good corner worker and have faith, especially if you drink enough (this is very important), sooner or later, you will see "Brian Redman's Cat"......Unknown Author

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