Thursday, May 5, 2011

Day Five - No Problem Raceway

Our day started at 3:30 am when we arrived at our motel in Donaldsonville, LA after a 590 mile leg from Gainesville, FL and went to bed.  In reality, Woody and I had driven 960 miles in this day with an actual moving time of 14 hours.  Remember we had to drive a 240 mile leg from Savannah to Daytona to start the day!

The alarm went off much to early at 7 am.  OUCH!  Three and a half hours of sleep.  Today's event is at Grand Circuit Bayou.  Since the owner of the track has not changed the name at the main entrance, I will keep using it as it is what we know, No Problem Raceway (NPR).  Woody and I have both driven here before in 2008.  It is an interesting little track that shares the main straight with a drag strip.

We flip a coin to see who will drive the morning session - I lose.  Woody suits up and then grids the car.  It is not long before he is off and running.  He looks smooth.  Brian and I are watching from the stands at the carousel.  We both agree that he could be on the throttle sooner as he is exiting this turn complex.  The results are posted and Woody turns a 4:31 total elapsed time for his three laps which is good enough for 32nd fastest.  It maintains our 31st overall position.

Lunch comes and goes and we are sitting around Camp ZERO with One Lap friends laughing about events of the week.  It's here that I learn that Joe Drumheller paid and coached the armadillo to run out in front of a white BMW M3 with Virginia plates.  It was a suicide mission of sorts with a promise of a 1,000 virgins and putting the kids through Armadillo University.  What goes around comes around.  In transit to Louisiana Joe hit a tire carcass that destroyed his front splitter.  No serious damage and we are glad Joe and his co-driver, Don, are okay after the experience.

My turn at the wheel arrives and before you know the session is over.  After packing up and heading north toward Birmingham and Barber Motorsports Park, we learn that my time was 4:22 placing me at 18th overall in the afternoon event.  It moves us up to 30th overall in the standings.

It is a short 460 mile jaunt to Birmingham from Donaldsonville.  We stop for a nice dinner in Meridian, Mississippi with friends (Joe, Don, Brian, Dave, Mike, and Steve).  We are back on the road by 7:30-ish with another 146 miles to travel.  The GPS has us arriving at 10:30 pm.  Right on schedule, we pull in to the lovely Hampton Inn in Leeds, Alabama.  By 11 pm we are horizontal with 8 hours of blissful sleep ahead of us.  We need it as it was a long Tuesday and Wednesday.....3-1/2 hours of sleep in a 42 hour period.

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