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Mid Summer Update
|Posted by Doreen Anderson on July 24, 2017 at 2:00 PM|
Wow how time flies! It is almost August. The summers always fly by because every moment spent not racing is spent working on the car to get it ready for the next race or I'm at the track trying to learn more.
It's crazy how addicting this sport is. This weekend was supposed to be my first race, the St. Louis division race. It was postponed due to hot weather. Although this was probably the right call, I couldn't help but be disappointed since this was going to be my first official race I enter as a licensed TAD owner/driver.
The last time I was in the car was already 3 weeks ago and I'm itching to get back in the seat. We were fortunate enough to put on a show for the ADRL fans at one of my favorite race tracks US 131 in Martin, MI. It was the AFD team vs the NitroU Gas Monkey Energy car driven by Alex Laughlin. Friday was a rain out so we made two runs on Saturday. The first run we went 5.89 @ 224 but Alex went 5.41 @ 265. This was my first time ever staging and running a fast car with another car in the other lane. I was nervous. After deploying the chutes, slowing down and turning off the track I was getting out of the car and Alex told me that I did a great job (knowing that it was my first time). It definitely calmed my nerves for the second run. Right before we started up the cars for the second run I was told we are going to do side by side burnouts and whoever has the longest burnout gets $100. Knowing that I am the car owner I smiled because I knew I could win this. And that I did. It was the most exciting and fun burnout I have ever done, I loved it and so did the crowd! The second run was better for us 5.78 @ 228 but Anthony had the NitroU car really flying for that run because I could not catch Alex with his 5.30 @268 run.
Overall we had so much fun that weekend in Michigan and we learned a lot about the car. We previously were having a couple of issues like intake springs breaking which were resolved after these runs. We actually had to get them closer to coil bind! ( I know these racecars are so crazy most people don't believe it)
The weekend after Martin was our local national NHRA event in Chicago. We were expecting quite a few cars so we hadn't planned on entering this, at least not this year. Only 16 TAD cars showed up. Ouch! Any drag racer knows it's very difficult to be at the track without working on or driving something. So many people asked where my car is since they know I'm licensed but we just had not planned on it. It takes us a little more time with being new to the routine and the whole team working full time jobs on top of trying to get the AFD team going just doesn't give us much shop time. There are so many things that go into getting a nitro car ready for a race.
Luckily a couple different friends welcomed me into their pits to learn more about how to run afuel, show them things I had questions on and I got to hang out with my friends for the week too. I am so thankful to all these people that are constantly showing me so much hospitality at the race track. Definitely a great group. One of my favorite examples of this was when an afuel starter didn't work a bunch of other afuel guys were running all over trying to get them a starter. I wouldn't be able to do this without the help of so many teams throughout the years. Even though I didn't bring my car it turned into a great weekend. I learned a lot and not one but TWO good friends walked away with wallys and I got to be a part of it. I was Megan's PR girl for the weekend so I got to video every run for her all the way into the winner's circle. The other friend that won was Sean Bellemuer, he was running in the Bartone Bros TAFC. Both are just great people and I was so thrilled that they won.
So what's next? Well I have a family vacation planned where we are actually going to the Seattle national event (because what's vacation without racing) but like I said I'm itching to be back in the drivers seat AFTER ONLY 3 WEEKS. It's a sickness. St. Louis was postponed until October and my next planned race was not until Earlville in September. That is just way too long to wait. I need to put this license to good use.
After talking it over with the crew and making sure it's possible the team has decided we will be entering in the Brainerd MN national event. We originally had said we wouldn't be doing any national events this year, but we are going to make an exception for this race. I can't put the excitement I have into words. It's not going to be easy for us to get there but it's going to be so worth it and I can't wait to get to be out there on this level in 2017! It's really happening!
We will also be running the Frantic Fueler the weekend before (on Aug 12) at Byron IL! I get to have some fun outside of the drivers seat when we run this.
2017 has been a great year and I can't wait to see where else it takes us. What a journey!