TRAK Race 4

What’s the forecast in Uxbridge?

The first national level event of the season has arrived. A unique race weekend has qualifying on Saturday, but racing on Sunday. The rain has been coming down all morning, and even if it stops, it won’t be dry for qualifying. Rain tires. Rubber gloves under race gloves. Christopher drills three holes in the seat to let the water out.

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Practice is just as much about avoiding spinners as it is setting fast times. Keep it on the ‘wet line’. Don’t slam on the brakes if someone spins in front of you; crashing at these slow speeds won’t even hurt that much. Just more scuff marks on the decals. A hammer and a welder fixes all.

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Daniel’s times improve all afternoon. He’s still mid-pack, but Briggs Senior is a tough group. Old friend James Treadwell watches Daniel from trackside, and suggests a different clutch, assembles it and gives it to Daniel, no questions asked. Daniel’s gap to the leaders is shrinking quickly. He’s getting faster. Daniel sets quicker times than Jon Treadwell in practice session three, but the transponder didn’t work in the wet conditions. Too bad, because that time sheet was getting framed and presented to James at VRS.

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Sunday: Clear skies, bright sun, temperatures in the low twenties. Chris and Christopher set up the kart for the dry. New slicks, for the second week in a row. What luxury! Everyone is in a good mood, then as an unexpected treat, Daniel’s mom and sister arrive trackside.

 

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Michelle Demaras gets to work on the kart, then starts documenting and photographing the race day through the eyes of an 8 year old cheerleader.

 

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Daniel has so many people supporting him. Christopher turning wrenches, Aleki giving driving advice, the Ferrari family pitted next door giving unconditional support, plus mom, dad, and Michelle cheering…even Flash the family dog howls along with the Vortex engines. It’s something between a team and a family.

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But playtime is over, and the Finals are about to begin. Fuel, air pressure, helmet, gloves. Time to go. Full send it!

The races end, and Daniel isn’t sure where he finished. He had tough battles on track, end contact was made. Daniel was given a one-position penalty for contact, but it earned a slap on the back from James Treadwell on finally becoming a Senior driver, and not letting the big kids push him around.

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