Thursday, May 6, 2010

New Jersey Motorsports Park - Day Seven (Part Two)

Sorry this is coming in so late crew.  It has been a long day filled with much excitement.  It started as I wrote earlier this morning with many friends (Wayne Speight also drove up from Annapolis with his friend Bob) arriving at the track to watch the One Lap festivities.  It was topped off by the best surprise of all - Suze, my lovely wife walked in to the paddock.  I was totally surprised as when we last spoke she was iffy at best on coming to Millville.  It absolutely made my day!!!  Thanks Suze.  Thanks to everyone that came out to support us and the other competitors.

Now on to the action and the results of the day.  Brian ran in the third group of the morning.  Woody ran in the fourth group.  Both came off the track feeling rather good about their efforts.  Only time would tell once   all the runs were completed and the results posted.  As the track is not very long, but very fast the One Lap organizers were able to get through the field quickly.  Not long after finishing all the run groups, the results were posted.  The winner in the class war was Brian by approximately 4 seconds over Woody.  Brian was 9th fastest overall and Woody 14th.  It leaves us after the morning session in first place in our class by 5 points.  Woody commits to picking up his game in the afternoon.  He will need to or we could walk away with a 10 point lead (two event win advantage).

As it is rather warm, we and many other friends are gathered under the canopy we carry with us.  You never know when it will rain or be blistering hot with no shade available other than what you bring.  Lunch, conversations, and naps under the temporary shade are had by all.  It is Thursday and the week has been long and tiring.  We're almost at the finish.

Right after lunch, the afternoon session begins.  Brian is in run group #3 with Woody following in run group #4.  Neil and I are timing each of them.  Based on our scoring it appears Woody may have the edge by a second over three laps.  Again, we are left to wait and check final results from the road while in transit back to Ohio.

As has become routine, we pack the car, say our goodbyes, and head out.  Woody asks if we can stop by the Thunderbolt Course to watch the Trans-Am cars practice for the weekend SCCA races.  Sure comes the word from all.  As we pull in to the paddock there are a few teams there and at this point only unloading their gear and setting up camp.  We say our goodbyes again and this time head for Ohio and Nelson Ledges in earnest.

This is our fourth transit across the Pennsylvania Turnpike in a week.  I am beginning to feel as though we know every bump and crack in this highway.  If I see this road again within the next 12 months, I'll scream - I still need to drive home tomorrow across it - damn, that makes 5 trips.  My only hope is that I can make the journey quickly and if "caught" pushing the limit I'll meet our friendly trooper.  On a short stop at a turnpike plaza, we bumped in to a state trooper.  He stopped as we were getting back in our cars and asked, "you guys aren't racing on my turnpike, are you?"  But of course not.  He was very nice and Woody explained the event.  He was interested in the cars and wished us good luck.

At some point, we start getting the results.  The news is good for the Woody/Neil team as Woody was 13th fastest in the afternoon and Brian 15th.  The difference in their times was less than one second over three laps.  Amazing!  It places us in a tie once again.  Due to the Danny Corcoran Vette dropping out and taking DNF's since Mid-Ohio, we are now 13th overall with Woody and Neil 12th.  There is no way for us to catch them in the overall unless they have a complete failure or DNF.  No one wishes that. Competition is healthy.

So where does that leave us?  It leaves me driving head to head with Woody tomorrow at Nelson Ledges.  If Woody takes both events with me finishing second in class to him they will have won the class with one event remaining - the dry skid pad.  If we split, it will come down to the dry skid pad.  We also cannot forget our friends in the Porsche Cayman.  They could easily get in the mix as far as times and make a huge impact.  Tomorrow will be very fun and interesting.  We are all looking forward to it.

I will wrap it up for now as I have a full belly after a splendid meal at Salvatore's in Youngstown, OH and the alarm is coming early again at 6:00 am.

Cheers all!  

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