The good news about Eddie Van Halen: He’s apparently through with rehab, and he’ll be appearing in front of a huge crowd this weekend! The bad news about Eddie Van Halen: The crowd will smell like gasoline and toasted sourdough bread!
Phoenix International Raceway President Bryan R. Sperber has announced that rock superstar Eddie Van Halen will serve as an Honorary Race Official for the SUBWAY Fresh Fit 500™ NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at PIR on Saturday, April 21. As an Honorary Race Official, Van Halen will be part of pre-race activities and will join Sperber on the pre-race stage greeting drivers as they are introduced prior to the start of the race.
In addition to his duties as an Honorary Race Official, Van Halen will help to unveil a limited edition Fender Stratocaster Guitar as well as a limited edition EVH® brand Frankenstein™ replica guitar at PIR on Friday, April 20. The Fender guitar, with its unique designs, will be presented to the winner of the SUBWAY Fresh Fit 500™ on Saturday, April 21. The one-of-a-kind PIR Fender Stratocaster Guitar was built by Chris Fleming, Senior Master Builder, in Fender’s Custom Shop.
“I’m personally delighted that Eddie Van Halen has accepted our invitation to join us as our Honorary Race Official for the SUBWAY Fresh Fit 500™,” said Sperber. “There is no one who has had the kind of impact on music that he and his band – Van Halen – have had. I know it will be a thrill for the drivers and fans to have Eddie at Phoenix International Raceway for the NASCAR weekend.”
We know, we know: Baby steps. There’s no need to throw the on-the-mend Van Halen into a room with David Lee Roth and bunch of bellhop-dressed strippers just as he’s starting to feel better. But couldn’t his advisers could have done a better job when it came to securing Eddie’s first back-in-the-spotlight comeback appearance? Shilling brand-name product at a multi-sponsored corporate gig is not only déclassé–it’s downright Hagarian.