Friday, April 6, 2012

A night to forget

With racing it’s easy to get caught up in the moment, but in a matter of minutes it can go from being the best thing in the world to the worst - and then you start to question just why you’re doing it.  Saturday night was definitely the latter and as the night went on my temper got worse and worse.

It was a night of setbacks where I ultimately ended up scoring no points.   There was no practice so it was straight out blind for the first race.    All was going well until the last lap where I was safely in the points but ended up parked in the tyres on the shale track.  The second race wasn’t going to be much better either as I spun trying to avoid another spinning car.   This left me facing the wrong way in the middle of the bend as the entire pack came hurting round towards me.   How they all missed me I’ll never know and I’ll tell you now there is nothing more nerve-wracking than sitting facing into traffic as the cars come charging at you flat out.   I managed to get up the kerb and onto the relative safety of the infield without too much of a drama but another race had slipped by with no points.

After the second race I was intent on loading the car up as I was certain we wouldn’t have qualified for the final but somehow we got in and headed out determined to try and salvage something.    It wasn’t to be though as one of the cars in front stalled and the group all went piling in, this left me stationery in the middle of the track with the pack racing round me once again.   Luckily I survived for a second time and was able to start the race albeit from the back . . . the same place I finished as the flag dropped 35 laps later.

 By now my temper was less than sweet and in my head I could rapidly see the dream escaping me.   I wanted to get loaded up and go home, then just as we were about to leave Graham Murray said something to me that changed my attitude completely and is probably one of the truest comments about racing I’ve ever heard:  “Just think of all the amazing people you have met that will be friends for life, if you didn’t come racing you wouldn’t know any of them.”   There is, after all, much more to it than winning races and world finals, it’s the bigger picture that really counts - the one we are all too quick to forget on a bad day!

It hadn’t been the best of nights but I was out there having a go and I had seen all my friends including Steph for the first time in what seems like forever - well since the NEC at least!   In reality things aren’t looking as bad as they did on the night, and with five meetings left to go and the points so close, qualifying is still very much a possibility.

The car is loaded in the trailer ready for the morning and I’ve a feeling it’s going to be a hectic Easter weekend.   I’m heading straight up to Scotland with John after the meeting at Northampton for a weekend of Lightning Rod action, so by the time I get home on Monday I’ll have been to four meetings at three tracks – I’ll feel like an F2 racer!

Thanks as ever for reading.

Until next time.


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