My last race was at Mid-Ohio with the American Endurance Racing series. Having never been to this circuit I was excited to be going having grown up watching many SCCA Runoffs and professional races there on television. It always struck me as a cool old school style track and I was not disappointed.
Friday was a practice and qualifying day, something I very much welcomed after Daytona and Barber where it was just hop in and race, no practice. I was up to speed quickly and started to fine tune the corners. By qualifying myself and one of my co-drivers were running very similar times, he having been there before I used him for feedback and to sort of set the pace so I could try and follow. This was the third race we’ve done together this season and we’re starting to really develop a good relationship as teammates.
Saturday was race one which would be 8.5 hours in length. I was told I’d be starting which I am always fine with. The start was clean but we fell back a few spots as it felt like our tires took some laps to really come to life. Times started dropping though and by the end of my first stint I had made up a couple of places.
We ran through the driver order and continued a very good pace running in the top five. I got back into the car in the afternoon and felt very good. My times started dropping and I set my own fastest lap. When I got out of the car I was told we were in second and I had closed the gap to the leader by forty seconds.
My teammate jumped in after me with the goal to continue that pace and pass the leader. He was able to do it and then hold him off for the closing stages of the race. We took the win in class by just eight seconds or so after eight and a half hours of racing. It was a great team effort and a great way to end the day.
Another driver would take the green flag on Sunday and we had some concerns about the gearbox. It was notchy on Saturday and we weren’t sure how it would do Sunday. About an hour in he reported all the gears were grinding and then shortly after came over the radio to tell us the clutch pedal was on the floor. Sadly, that was the end of our day after he drove it in and we discovered a piece broken off of the bell-housing. Our sister car however went on to win in class so the team came home with two class wins and valuable championship points.
As always thanks to Casey Carden Motorsports for providing fantastic equipment and an amazing crew, Creature Cups for something to drink coffee from that’s not boring, iLute, Joe’s Kleen Products for keeping our hands clean and windshields clear, MotoSolutions for keeping my glasses and visor from fogging up, Lemons of Love, and Honey Stinger for some fuel.