September 15th, 2004


A new online racing experience...

Yes, I'm still racing in a Grand Prix Legends league (stopped doing the diaries though), but I've just joined up with a NASCAR Racing 2003 Season league from California Racing Online (run by the photographer at Watsonville Speedway, where I cover races for the Santa Cruz Sentinel newspaper). I'd never raced NR2003 online before.

They run fixed setups with races at 30 percent distance and full damage. This week's race was at Michigan.

I didn't run too much in practice, having practiced a lot on Monday, but was 5th quickest of over 20 drivers. In qualifying, however, I spun at the end of lap 1, which killed my speed on lap 2, so I started 18th. The race was 60 laps long, and on a lap-20 caution I was 11th as most of the field made a pit stop. I stayed out for the track position, and was in second for the restart. When the green came out, the leader spun under acceleration and into me! I got clear and began to accelerate again, but just barely clipped the apron which sent me veering slightly to the right, where the third-place car had tried to get around me (we don't race to the yellow but the yellow wasn't out yet, so he was going for it). We collided and the ensuing wreck took out about eight cars, myself included. I finished 13th. Darn!

It was fun while it lasted though. We run Dover next week. Meanwhile, the GPL league hits East London, South Africa (1966) tomorrow night. I have to try to maintain second in points!