Sunday, December 21, 2014

Festive greetings

Well here we are, Christmas again.  Another year older and wiser but I’m certainly no richer or any more sensible than I was 12 months ago - although I certainly have plenty more stories to tell!

The spare panels for the car are repaired and painted in a nice shiny white and have been put back onto the car.  After seeing it blue for so long it looks strange painted a different colour.  The ‘Ghostly Hot Rod’ as my Mum called it!  The white is only the beginning though and the rest is down to Jay at TPR Signs.  It will be interesting to see what his creative genius can come up with.  I have no idea what it will be yet but I have complete faith in him and I can’t wait to see the end result.

As it was my birthday, it seemed rude to go to Ipswich and not sample the night life.  So, complete with the international traveler Lee Best, we headed off with the car to drop it off at TPR Signs and then see what the evening would bring.  It turned into quite the racer’s night out . . . current drivers being represented by Kym Weaver, Shaun Taylor, Danny Fiske, myself, ex-Hot Rod racer Jay and some circuit racing fella by the name of Gavin Murray - but I doubt anyone really remembers him?  Lots of our other friends and regular faces from racing came along to celebrate, including Mr Ipswich himself Andrew Bigmore (I hope this little mention means he’ll forgive me for uploading a very festive picture of him on to Facebook earlier this week?).

It was a good night and a great way to celebrate my birthday.  A few too many beers were drunk and a bottle of champagne was involved somewhere along the line, something to do with Mr Weaver I’m sure!  It’s always great to see everyone away from the track and the pressures of racing and to just sit back and have a laugh.  The social side will always be a big part of it for me, and the day when it gets to the point I have no-one to enjoy a pint with or a midweek chat is the day I will hang my helmet up for good and head off with my fishing rods in search of a new challenge!

Besty had never been to Wimbledon so the next day we headed off into the city to see what Plough Lane had to offer on a cold December evening.  Not being a huge fan of spectating I wasn’t expecting too much, but after seeing so many familiar faces and catching up with so many people I had a great night.  Will I be going in November for the Best in Britain?  Well, the wire scares me but I’m never one to miss out on an opportunity to do something different, so yes, you can expect to see the #27 make the trip into the capital just once!

Believe it or not, once the car is back we have very little to do for the show; the biggest job is also my least favourite - sorting out the wheels.  If all goes to plan we should have three evenings to do it when it’s back after New Year but judging by our usual standards of disorganised chaos we will be loading it five minutes before we need to leave for the show!

I’m planning on a nice chilled out Christmas at home before heading up to Scotland to celebrate New Year.  I want to extend a massive congratulations to John and Kylie on the exciting news that they are expecting a baby next year!    This might be our last chance to party for a while, and I know it won’t go to waste!

I don’t really have any sort of plan for racing next year, I’m going to keep going as I am and enjoy it.  We want to change a few things with the car and see what they do.  I plan to get up to Scotland and do as many meetings as I can, and I really fancy a trip out to Tipperary if time and budget allow.

I’d like to wish you Happy Christmas and all the best for 2015 - I’m hoping good old Santa will bring something to help me find an extra two tenths of a second a lap!   I’ll be back after the NEC to let you know how that goes for me.  If every other year has been anything to go by there will be lots of memories made and great stories to tell.

Thanks as ever for reading.

Until next time


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