Auckland Champs / Easter at Vegas
If perseverance was an Olympic event, Foxy would take the gold medal this year. The fact that he is still showing after a season from hell coupled with personal family tragedies speaks volumes about the guy. They say that “what doesn't kill you make's you stronger” …. Let's hope so!!
The first meet since the split tank at the Dirt Cup meet was the Auckland champs. This was contested on night 2 of the team's nationals at Waikaraka. I wasn't there so can ‘t really comment on the racing but the fact that we actually drove on and off the track after all 3 heats was a great step up from where we have been since before Xmas. Unfortunately Foxy couldn't retain his Auckland Champs title this season but was relieved to just finish after a terrible run. We will gladly accept the 2nd placing in the championship after the run we have had lately!
Easter weekend just gone was used as an opportunity to get away from it all for the team and all the crew with families in tow headed away for the whole 3 day weekend to get some R&R, racing was just going to be one of the activities for the weekend. Watching the racing on the Saturday night from the bank reinforced to us what we knew… the track was going to be slick with really only one race line. Foxy forgot this in heat 1 when, while running 4th from grid 8, he decided to try the high line around 10s Willy Noonan thru turn 3…. Result?? Massive damage as the marbles on the outside of the track gave Foxy little control and he slid hard into the wall. The resulting impact caused the front to dig in and over she went. Casualty list: 1 wing, 1 front beam, 1 jacobs ladder, bent front torsion bar tubes, multiple bent arms etc etc etc….
2 options remained with this DNF. First was to get the car fixed and sit in the pits to wait for the Ginge Heywood race where we would have been off grid 1 as lowest points scorer or 2 fix the car and get back on the horse if we had it repaired in time for heat 2. Thanks to a few outside helpers from the Super stock ranks (they know who they are) we were able to get the car semi ready for heat 2. Foxy was last on the track but did get out there to take his grid 4 start (allbeit with our heavily damaged wing from Wellington on the car… was in better knick than the one we had just destroyed!). The car wasn't 100% but we took the win after another scary moment with Willy when Foxy had no where to go and plowed into him after Willy turned himself around…. Another bent front end!
Returning to the pits and we had a badly bent front end and no spares. After some debate we decided to try and portapower the front beam straight as best we could and hope for the best. This sort of worked but the front end was still well bent back and up which was always going to make the car a handful to drive in heat 3.
Track position is gold on the track at Vegas and luckily for us we were off grid 1 for the last heat of the Easter Champs. If we had to start further back we would have been no show as the car was well off the pace due to the damage we couldn't fix. Winning the start was the only option and this was not going to be easy as the outside grids had dominated the starts so far. Foxy had the 18r car of Dennis Hanson on the outside and they got a good clean start with nothing un-toward happening. After a bit of a battle Foxy was able to hold on to the lead and that was that. This gave Foxy two wins from the last 2 heats but left us 2 points shy of Brian Jesen in the points wash-up. From where we were after heat 1, we had to be happy.
Team Fox are currently reassessing the damage on the car and doing a stock take of what spares we have left! The plan had been to head to Huntly this weekend for the Waikato Champs but at this stage we are not sure if we will make it. All efforts will be made to get there to support Red and the team at Huntly, so fingers crossed! The rest of the season in the mod will be decided after this week.