Clash at the Coliseum
By Staff Report
Published: 31 Jan, 2022
4 Minute Read
With NASCAR descending on Los Angeles this week, the first names in a group of grand marshals set to kick things off for Sunday’s Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum have been announced.
And what bigger way to get things started in the City of Angels than with some of LA’s biggest sports stars?
The first of the group, announced Monday – Eric Dickerson.
A staple of the Los Angeles football scene, the Pro Football Hall of Famer Dickerson played 11 seasons for the LA Rams, Indianapolis Colts, LA Raiders and Atlanta Falcons. In just his second year in the league, Dickerson set the NFL’s single-season rushing record (2,105 yards) while playing for the Rams. He holds the record to this day.
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TUESDAY: NASCAR Race Hub announced that Jim Abbott would be among the grand marshals. Abbott pitched in the major leagues for a decade, his crowning achievement being a no-hitter in 1993. Abbott, who was born without a right hand, had two stints with the California Angels and won 87 games in his remarkable career.
“One thing I’ve never done is see a short-track NASCAR race, and this weekend I’m so excited to go up to the LA Coliseum and be part of history,” Abbott said. “I’m so honored to be a grand marshal.”
WEDNESDAY: Race Hub announced two more grand marshals for the event: Misty May-Treanor and Greg Townsend.
Treanor is a retired American professional beach volleyball player. Over the course of her highly decorated career, she collected three Olympic gold medals while competing for the United States and won more than 100 championships in domestic and international competition. Along with teammate Kerri Walsh Jennings, the pairing went on to become one of the most dominant in beach volleyball history. The duo only lost one set in their 11-year run.
“I am so humbled and honored to be one of the grand marshals for this unique and historic event,” May-Treanor said. “I am so excited. I can’t wait for the speed, I can’t wait for the adrenaline rush, I can’t wait for the sounds of the crowd.”
Drafted in 1983, Townsend spent 12 years in the NFL with the Los Angeles Raiders (formerly Oakland, now Las Vegas) and one with the Philadelphia Eagles. A versatile defensive player, he primarily played end and was selected to four All-Pro teams and a pair of Pro Bowls. Born in LA, Townsend helped bring the hometown Raiders a Super Bowl victory in 1984.
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THURSDAY: Race Hub announced another grand marshal for the event: NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon is joining the lineup.
Gordon, the 2019 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee, was recently promoted to vice chairman at Hendrick Motorsports after spending the last few seasons in the FOX Sports broadcast booth. Gordon won 93 races in 23 full-time seasons at the Cup Series level, earning four premier series championships in the legendary No. 24. The California native also has three Daytona 500 wins to his name.
“I think the fans are going to blown away,” Gordon said. “I know I can’t wait to see what happens on track and all the action.”
FRIDAY: Race Hub announced that Dave Roberts will join the list of grand marshals for this weekend’s spectacle. In addition, former University of Southern California football legends Matt Leinart and Reggie Bush will also be grand marshals.
Former Major League Baseball player and current manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Roberts is the first manager in MLB history to lead a team to division titles in each of his first four seasons. He led the Dodgers to the 2020 World Series, collecting the storied franchise’s seventh title and ending a 32-year championship drought. In six seasons as manager of the LA-based organization, Roberts has a .662 win percentage.
Leinart is no stranger to big moments under the lights in the Coliseum, as he won the 2004 Heisman Trophy at USC and led his team to an undefeated season as a junior before going on to a career as a first-round NFL draft pick. Bush, a former USC Trojan running back, earned the Heisman Trophy in 2005 after amassing more than 2,000 yards from scrimmage. Bush’s electric ability earned him a plethora of NCAA records, alongside his two selections to the NCAA All-American Team. Drafted to the NFL in 2006 as the second overall pick to the New Orleans Saints, Bush went on to win Super Bowl XLIV before retiring in 2017.
The athletes join a star-studded cast of participants in this year’s event, including performing artists Ice Cube, Pitbull and DJ Skee.
Sunday’s event coverage kicks off at 2 p.m. ET with NASCAR Race Day on FOX. Following the pre-race show, the heat sessions begin at 3 p.m. ET with the main event scheduled for 6 p.m. ET (radio broadcast on MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).