Racing Album

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July 2002, Portland International Raceway

Taking care of the car before and in between races takes up a great deal of time.  Above, I'm cleaning my window—it's important to be able to see!  Just before heading to the hot pits, I posed for an insistent photographer [right].

 

Weekends at the track usually include practice sessions, qualifying races that establish starting order, and the actual races. During a practice session, I took a break to check my tire pressure [above left]. I don't usually have a crew to help me, but race stewards sometimes lend a hand.

 

Before entering the track, the cars sit lined up in the hot pits [above right] in the order in which they finished during the qualifying session.  This time is a short opportunity for mental preparation. 

 

Finally, the race begins.  I enter the track under the watchful eye—and low-tech sign—of a race steward [right].

 

You can tell this is still early in the race because the cars haven't dispersed yet. I'd love to pass Doug Hebenthal's white and green GT3 Cup Car ("The X-Box"), the same model as mine but a year newer, but his car has the edge.

 

However, during this race, Doug had car trouble, leaving me in the lead.  While I concentrate on my driving, Cameron prays that nothing goes wrong for the last few laps [left]. 

 

Victorious!  I managed to keep it together to the end.  My reward is a checkered flag, a plaque, very smelly clothes—and a great feeling of accomplishment. 

 

Back in the paddock, at the end of a day of racing, I use a winch to slowly pull my car into its trailer. (The car doesn't have a gear low enough to move slowly enough to be safe.) 

Some weekends are frustrating and even disappointing, but this has been a good one!

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