November 9th, 2005

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Argh! (Sim-Racing Frustration!)

So it was Race 6 of the 10-race Chase for the Cup in the full-hardcore, open-setup, random weather NASSCAR SuperCup Series today, at Texas Motor Speedway. I was sitting second in points, 69 behind the leader. The leader and the defending series champion both wrecked out. Looking good. Got fastest race lap. Looking really good. Moved up to third before a caution. Quite good indeed! On the restart, took another position. Oh yeah! Then one of the cars that didn't pit gave me room I wasn't expecting, and I took it though didn't want to cut under someone out of Turn 2 like that so early in the run before the tires are working properly... uh oh... sllooowwwww rotation... no way to speed it up to snap spin or slow it down... head on into the inside wall.

Crap!!!

I would have been leading the Chase easily! But now I've dropped to fourth. The only consolation is that I'm actually three points closer to the lead. It's a bigger pack of hounds to fight now, though. What a crappy Chase I'm having. Three DNFs in six races. Finishes have been 3rd, 13th, 13th, 3rd, 5th, and 14th. Ah well. Still, I'm doing better than I imagined as a rookie.

The hardcore fixed-setup truck series has ONE more race to go, on November 21 at Homestead. I'm leading the championship by only 20 points over the #008 driven by the fastest kid in the tight setups that we run now (if the series hadn't changed setup choices halfway though I'm sure I'd be in no danger at this point, as he struggles often in looser setups). It's going to be tough. He has a good chance of getting the pole -- 5 points -- and of leading the most laps -- 5 more points.

You can follow how I do in the remaining four Chase races on Wednesday nights, and the Truck finale that Monday by going to http://www.calrace.com/gnltv/racestats.php to see live timing & scoring during the races. Expect a lot of caution flags next Wednesday; we're at Phoenix! Races start shortly before 6:30 p.m. Pacific. (The Tuesday-night series has two races to go, but 2nd in the championship is pretty much a done deal for me and the lead is too far off, so it's just cruise mode to the end.)