Finishing In The Top 10 – Mostly….

Decided to get the K&N Series race in tonight!  It’s Wednesday night and this is the first race of the week for me.  Started out with the normal 30 minutes of practice, but was instantly yelled at on mike for pulling out onto the track too quickly.  So now I know not to pull up onto the track till the back stretch.  It’s not like he couldn’t see me but whatever.  Practice went well and i was running laps in the 30-32 second range on gradually decreasing tire grip.  I felt comfortable at the track and went to qualifying.  Wow!  I qualified 2nd!  Ran a 39 second lap!  Woot.  Now it’s onto the race.  The pole sitter was really taking his time getting going.  He wasn’t keeping up with the pace car at all and i ended up having to slow significantly to let him catch up.  Then when the pace car pulled off he held back and made me check up so that I was not ahead of him.  This whole chain of events led to the wreck i was involved in on the back stretch.  Since I had to check up before the start some cars were able to get around me on the start, no big deal but I was faster than them on fresh tires so caught up quickly but unfortunately someone hit the wall and I had to check up again.  This is when a car on the bottom came across the track and took me out.  After watching the replay I had no fault at all except that I was there.  I guess that’s part of racing.  I was able to keep going without a pit stop and managed to get myself a 9th place finish after battling back all the way from the back.  Not too bad but qualifying 2nd I was hoping for better.

I did really well at Brands Hatch.  This course really does well for me.  I practiced well and ended up 5th in practice.  Moved over to the qualifying round and ended up starting 4th.  That was really good.  I stayed there in the beginning and was keeping up with 2nd and 3rd until they got in a little incident and I was able to pass one of them.  He must have then been pissed and decided that I was in his way.  He bumped me on the fast blind turn and I was unable to save it.  I ended up hitting the wall and destroying my car.  I spend most of the race in the pits getting it repaired.  I think I’ll try this one again later.

I needed to have a good race this time and I did!  I ran the Spec Racer Ford at the Charlotte Motor Speedway road course.  I’ve run this course quite a bit during the first couple of rookie seasons because that is what you do!  I did the normal amount of practice leading up to the race and then went straight into qualifying.  I ended up Qualifying 5th and started as the 10 car.  The race started off really well with one of the leaders spinning out and one having to fall to the back because of a jumped start.  This put me in 3rd position.  Chris and I had a pretty good battle going on for a couple of laps with me putting significant pressure on him through the infield and on turn one.  I was much faster than him through turn one and would catch right up to his bumper and have to lift.  After a couple of laps of this, he was pushing pretty hard and eventually lost it in the infield.  This moved me up to 2nd where I was attempting to run down the leader.  This was a lost cause because he was about 1/10th of a second a lap faster than me so I never got to him.  I’ll take 2nd though!

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