Texas Motor Speedway drops pistol celebration in wake of mass shooting
Firing six-shooters has been part of post-race celebrations since the track opened in 1997 but was canceled after Sunday's mass shooting.
Texas Motor Speedway canceled its traditional pistol-shooting celebration following Sunday's AAA 500, hours after the state experienced the worst mass shooting in its history.
Winners firing a pair of six-shooters into the air after NASCAR Cup Series events has been part of post-race celebrations since the Fort Worth track opened in 1997.
However, track president Eddie Gossage told USA Today the decision to dispense with the tradition was made out of respect for the 26 people shot to death earlier Sunday at a church near San Antonio.
“In light of what happened, it was the respectful thing to do,” Gossage said.
Kevin Harvick won Sunday's race, his first career Cup Series victory at Texas.
According to USA Today, the six-shooter celebration has come under scrutiny before, including after the mass shooting in 2012 at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., while the National Rifle Association and Texas Motor Speedway had a sponsorship relationship.