Archive for May, 2013

Where’s Waldo?

Posted in Uncategorized on May 25, 2013 by vroomgrrl

Hi Pat,

Well that title is just a stupid way to start a post here, but I’ve been kind of missing. This is my first since September 2012? Wow. It’s been too long.

I must begin by saying I CAN’T BELIEVE I MISSED YOU AT THE HONDA INDY GRAND PRIX OF ALABAMA back in April! You spent lots of time at the PCA hospitality tent, and oh how I cannot believe I missed the opportunity to ask you all the questions I’d love to ask you in person. And to get you to take me for a spin in my still-stock 1988 911! Even if just around the access road (as much time as you’ve spent at Barber, I’m sure you’ve been as naughty as anyone on that road!). In years past, I would have been working away at the tent where you spent so much time, registering visitors, raffling off door prizes, posting schedule changes…when I wasn’t working the car corral, or running around rounding up supplies and speakers and cables and ice other things when you are “working” the tent for the club. Any other year I’d have been all over it! But this year, the race came too close to my birthday, which hubby and I had already planned to spend on the Fort Morgan beaches west of Gulf Shores, Alabama. I was watching the race from vacation, and when I saw the tweeted and facebooked photos of you at my club’s hospitality tent…well if I’d had my 911, I might just have tried very hard to speed the 4 (3?) hours back up to see you! Alas, I didn’t, and I didn’t.

Beyond that, my motorsports endeavors have been on hold again, thanks to another stupid car accident! My only contribution to this one was being out on the interstate on Christmas Day in a terrible, blinding downpour. Hubby and I were on our way back from Atlanta, and had planned to blow thru Birmingham and go on to Tuscaloosa for our Christmas visit with hubby’s family. We were in our 2004 Honda CR-V, and we were already spinning by the time my brain processed the bang of a car hitting ours, and all we could do was watch with awe as the headlights flew by our windows. Then another impact, more spinning, then flying straight backward, we could see everything as we crossed all four lanes of interstate before the back of the car hit the inside wall and we came to a rest facing the wrong way.

To our utter amazement, we were unhurt. The first thing we did was to kind of hold our hands in front of our eyes and turn them around, looking for blood. We couldn’t believe we were not bleeding, not hurt at all. We were covered in broken glass, the rain was coming in, the engine was still running. We gathered our wits about us quickly, as we were now hanging out into the fast lane at an angle from the wall, with cars speeding toward us around the turn. Not good. We grabbed a cell phone and called 911. Our spectacular accident, just near the airport exit, had already been called in, with injuries reported. I’m sure the caller thought we had to be at least hurt. So did we.

Several cars stopped and came to our aid. The first man told us that he was next to us and saw what happened. A Lincoln Town Car came up fast behind us, and when he went to pass, he lost control and started spinning. When he hit our car, his came to a stop, while ours went spinning first in one direction, where I think we clipped the wall on the other side, then back across all the lanes to where we were. The other car kept on going. Hit and run. Nobody had a good enough description to do anything, though hubby did see a car EXACTLY meeting the description of the one that witnesses said hit us, with damage on the right front end and fender….in front of the police station. An unmarked police car. Who knows.

So that’s the big wreck story. My already-messed-up neck got even more messed up, so my range of motion is a little limited, and it hurts like a mofo most of the time, though it’s getting better. So no helmet until I’ve got a better handle on that. The car was totaled, and we had a new one by the next weekend, a 2005 to replace the 2004.

And now while I have absolutely no fear about being in a race car, even in the rain (love that, actually!), I confess I have become kind of phobic about driving on the interstate in the rain. So I avoid it, or get a ride with somebody else, or whatever. I mean, I don’t get hysterical and pull off the interstate when it starts to rain or anything! But actually, I think I have managed to avoid even being on the interstate in the rain by watching the weather and planning my travel. For whatever this silly drivel is worth.

Meanwhile, as the real live professional sports car racing season started to shape up, I found myself sitting here with a great big “WTF” cloud hanging over my head. What in the world? Just after the end of last season, I think, Porsche Motorsport started making noises about new cars rolling out and changes here and there with teams. Next thing I knew, there was an announcement about no more Porsche factory alliance with Flying Lizard, and the Porsche Works drivers such as yourself and Jorg B were quickly replaced on the Lizard team. In fact, one of the drivers I used to GUSH to about you is now driving the old Lizard #45 (Spencer Pumpelly). I saw another announcement soon after about you going with CORE and R4R, and still, the big WTF cloud hung over my head.

What just happened? I suppose if I were still hanging around the tracks, I would have had some better intel. I’ve not been over to Franz Blam Racing in awhile, so I didn’t really have those brains to pick about it. Your website was quiet other than the announcements. A few hints on Twitter but nothing I could really figure out. I knew you were going to be on the sidelines for some of the season’s first races, and I wondered how hard that might be to do. I saw interviews with you where you talked about it a little, and I don’t know you well, but I think that I can say that I know you are a race car driver, and everything in you was probably aching to be behind the wheel at those first races. I know you are rolling with it and making the best of the changes, but I am just guessing that if you were in charge of the world, things may have gone a little differently around the transition.

Maybe next time you are nearby, I will manage to get out to the track and ask you all these burning questions myself! Until then, I am watching and rooting for you, loud and obnoxious as ever, of course. I think some of your time this season you may be sharing a car with one of my favorite drivers, and one of my only REAL DRIVING COACHES, Mike Skeen! Couple of ginger boys should make for a fiery season, I say!

Wherever you are, whatever (Porsche) you’re driving, GO GIT IT!!!!

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VroomGrrl