Saturday, May 12, 2012

Last day of OLOA

Today is the last day! I can't believe it's over already. We have one little event called the skid pad at TireRack.coms main site where we started. Derek and I drove thru rush hour Chicago traffic yesterday. It was a short. 270 mile trip but took over 5 hours.

I met some amazing guys and caught up with a few old ones as well. Topspeed Motorsports is going to win again! This will be there third year in a row. Doug and Leh have been awesome the entire event. All the advice even when people are trying to take them down for the championship, they still take time out to help us newbies. Man can they build a car and have it last as well as go crazy fast.

We are in 8th place overall out of 75 teams that started. I have to say this was and will be a great event for years to come. I met some awesome people!

Look at all the GTRs!

Derek did eat again today! I can't believe we missed three dinners this week.

Can you say warranty is up!

Us with Matt Farah from

Last event today! I wish we could keep doing this.

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Location:Paxson Dr S,South Bend,United States

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Day 6 and on the road again.

Well today started early and the jettison pod needed a good bath after 660 miles last night. Bugs the size of a penny kept hitting us at speeds we dare not say!

After the wash we went to the track for some much needed breakfast.

This track has the longest straight away with a banking right hand turn. I hit speeds in the 160 MPH range and you can't let off the gas at all or you let your competitors inch up on you. After this session I found out only a few of us had the nerve to stay on the gas and make a high speed turn.

I came in 6th place this morning and felt real good about it. The afternoon session not so good. I went off track on the smaller SCCA setup. I was coming in at 130 MPH hit the brakes hard and the car just could not slow down enough. All 4 wheels were off and I just floored it and turned left hard and was back on the track. I needed to make up for the mistake and went as hard as I could and managed a 8th place finish. WOW! Didn't think I could go that hard.

I was trying to remember the tracks because you see a new 1 or 2 every day!

This is a rare picture of the ghost from BIR we captured.

If you know what this is, then you in my age bracket.

Leh Keen is a professional race car driver and is winning this event along with Doug Wilks from Topspeed Motorsports out of Atlanta, Ga. Leh/Doug are the ones that told me about this event a year ago. So today I wanted to make sure I got a picture as I did a year ago. Leh left today as he has a race in NJ and couldn't stay.

The drag strip came next after these two events and I knew this is what I am good at. We prep the car for low ET and off we went!

With the wing off we went to the line. Lights turning I brought the engine RPM to 4000 and on green launched the car. The car went fine until 2nd gear and the transmission controller gave an high temp error and put us in LIMP mode! 2000 rpms all the way down the track! 56th place!

We then went bracket racing and I pulled a 8th place. The drag really hurt me today. I was 9th overall but after today I was pushed to 10th.

Doug and I relaxing in the pits!

We are now in route to Road America in Wisconsin. Only 2 days left of this event. I can't believe it happens so quickly.

I will post about tomorrow when I can.

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Location:Pine St,Monticello,United States

Day 6 Feeling a bit sad this is going to end soon.

After a long drive into the night we were able to get something to eat. Food is not your friend after 6 days of racing and eating anything quick and hot. We were able to at least sit and eat tonight.

We are in Minnesota and really looking forward to the next 2 tracks. What is really great for us is to switch back to E 85 gas!! We have been using 91 Octane for the last 4 days. The car just does not respond like it should with 91 Octane.

Guys out here seem to forget sometimes what they are doing, so they come up with ways to remember.

I will post a little later on.

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Location:Dellwood Dr,Brainerd,United States

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Start of Day 5

Today was a great start to a new track that we haven't see or heard about. We got up early to meet the film crew. I walked to track (whew) and was ready for the first run.

With my first run complete I felt good about what I did, however the 13th place finish was not what I expected. I really thought it was a top 10 finish.

I am getting ready for the final run today and after that Derek will be taking over for the autocross event. He will do great. I will post once we get the results!

I had a better time in the afternoon. But right before I was to go on track we had a major wreck!

That is not a suicide door! He was in the autocross course and hit a guard rail after spinning out. Not fun! He is out of the event.

Derek is racing the autocross event and he is a little nervous but I know he will do well.

A ladybug was on my chair and once again we are in the middle of nowhere.

This ladybug reminds me of my son Josh and he is an animal whisperer. I think this was a sign he was with me today.

As I was getting ready a Honda 70cc came up and I promised my other son Ryan I would get a picture on it. So Ryan here you go buddy.

We have a long wait til we autocross and then we are out of here to Brainard Minnesota 620 miles away. 5 hour energy drink anyone?

Scores just posted for the afternoon session. I came in 10th place! I move up from 12th place over all to 10th over all. Yes yes yes! So happy with the car/driving so far.

We are waiting on Derek's autocross time right now but he had the second fastest time with a 29.4. He almost beat Leh Keen.

I will update you all once I know more.

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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Beginning of day 4

So today we woke up to the sound of a garbage truck at 5:45 AM. Now it's not that big of deal but just 15 more minutes sure helps from all the driving. I wanted to get a quick swim in but the pool was not operational.

We headed out to get something to eat but, not a single place to eat could be found. We were on our way to the track and saw this.

I thought I was on the set of Last of the Mohicans. At the track they had no food as well. Went to the bait bag and grab what we could and ate.

First run came and I did OK 14th out of 75, but the big thing was I went off the track at about 50 MPH. It killed my time!

Afternoon came and after losing it the first time ever and needing to make up time, I went as fast as the track would let me. The other cars were throwing debris all over the track. Guess what? I went off again and this time the car just lifted and slid off. Nothing I could do but hold on and pray. I managed to get back on fast with just a little slow down.

After running off the track from grass at turn 6-7 I went in with my head down. Derek kept telling me that, there was nothing I could of done and that's racing. The car is fine from what we can tell now.

Scores were just posted and for the afternoon session I came in 10th out of 75 even going off the track! Explain that one to me? Goes off track and gets passed but improves time by 3 seconds???? We are in route to the hotel for a relaxing night of hmmmmmm sleep!!!!!

We are halfway done and I must say this has been such a blast to this point.

High Plains Raceway!

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1/4 star hotel/town

Just a quick update! We are in a town and I have to say its one of the worst! Hotel is really bad and the towns people are not all there!

This is the wall where you pick your prize stock and they kill it and bag it.

Also in the same store, I ask for a sub but HAD to fill a form out first as they would not take my order over the counter. We were the only two customers in the enter store.

We also were looking at getting power bars for tomorrow, however these we're expired with dust all over them.

Last but not least here is the hotel tonight!

Our big screen TV that they advertise is about the size of my laptop.

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Location:N Main St,Byers,United States

Monday, May 7, 2012

Day 3 almost over

Today was a great racing day for team AOKNetworking. We started the morning session with cloud cover that stayed the entire time. We have never stepped foot on this race track before. We trained and trained online (YouTube Videos) to only find out last night we had to run it counter clockwise!

The morning session was fun and I really worked the car around the course as best I could. I came in 6th out of 75 cars.

The second session in the afternoon was better as I drop a whole second off my time. I ended up coming in 7th place out of 75 cars.

I was in 18th place at the start of the day. With a strong 6th and 7th place today I jumped up to 12th overall for the event.

We are now headed to Byars Co. It's a short 618 miles away from the race track we just left.

Tomorrow will be a fun track! I will keep you posted!

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Location:WaKeeney,United States

First GTR wreck of the One Lap

A competitor that has a gray GTR, hit the wall of tires on turn 2 at Hallett raceway. Derek and Ty are working hard to get them back out for the second session.

We are waiting for the times to be posted currently. I was in the third run group in the morning session.

More pictures of the GTR damage.

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Location:E 55 Rd,Jennings,United States

Start of Day 3

Well last night was uneventful except for the fact we didn't eat dinner. We had the late McDonalds lunch but we were hungry about 9 PM local time. There is a diner across the street but as we were getting ready to go over the open neon sign was turned off. So we just went back to the room and had beef jerky!

This is our hotel for the night. I would rate it as 1/2 star and I am giving it that because they have air conditioning.

We are off to Hallett today and this race will be run counter clockwise. I hope to do well. I will keep you all posted!

My blogging desk.

Location:W Caddo St,Cleveland,United States

Sunday, May 6, 2012

One Lap Day 2

I had a good start to day one and my friend from the military came out to see me at some events. I have not seen Keel for about 8 years. It was awesome!
Today started with a not so pretty day. We woke up a 4:30 AM to the sound of our hotel room door being blown open by 80 MPH winds from tornado that touched down a little ways away. We did not get much sleep last night. We were able to get about 4 hours sleep last night and that's all. We headed out to the track early as we had nothing else we could do. (Side Note) this was what we ran into as we came down the stairs this morning.
Now this track was not to hard but it was wet. It's a bit different when you are racing at 150 MPH down a race track and it's wet compared to a normal highway. This was by far the worst run I did. I learned later, it's hurry up and wait like my military days. We waited to 1 PM and started our second run. The track was FINALLY dry. I went out and gave it my all today. I did not hold back on the last event. Once we were done we hurried up and packed the car and headed out. We had about 85 miles of gas left so we headed to the gas station to fill up. Once we did that we wanted to get some McDonald's and eat! In the drive thru the lady handed me coke and the lid popped off and coke went everywhere in my car!!!!! I was livid!!!! It hit my iPhone and all the electronics we have in the car. So MAD! So what do I do? I drove the entire 472 miles to Oklahoma! Poor Derek, he knew I was mad and just left me alone! We made it to the hotel in record time to say the least but this was BY FAR THE BEST PART OF THE TRIP! We could not get coverage and just talked and laughed and made fun of things we saw along the way. I will try and get Derek to do his sound bites on what I do when I pass traffic. We are in Oklahoma today and will race tomorrow AM at Hallet and then off to (Almost) Denver Colorado. Recap of the event so far. Day 1 Wet skip pad 67 out of 75 Day 1 Oval 11th out of 75 Day 1 Autobahn CC 9th out of 75 Day 2 Mid America Motorplex (Morning session) 21 out of 75 Day 2 Mid America Motorplex (Afternoon session) 7th out of 75 I just want to say thank you for all my Family and friends that have been watching It really means a lot to me. I am sorry for the bad cell coverage. We are at a hotel in Oklahoma and the Internet keeps going in and out. On a side note the K-9 Police department is here for annual training and are all super nice. Car is safe for tonight!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Day 1 Offical start.

OK the big day has arrived! We are off and running. First off last night was tough. I did not fall asleep until 3:45 AM with a 5:30 AM wake up call. I was able to catch a little sleep but truth be told I was to hyped up to sleep. I am feeling it now.
My first ever wet skid pad was awesome. Although I was not the fastest nor did I have the most G forces, I still finished without wrecking and wiping out. I finished way back in the pack at 67th place out of 75. Not the start I was looking for but I am not complaining about it. Everything here happens to dang fast! OK with that out of the way, it was time to get the Oval. We packed up and made it to the South Bend Speedway in about 10 minutes. This is something I always wanted to do. I was asked by a competitor to race him in the Oval with his GTR. I said "might as well" SO I lined up and we were 2nd in line. Off we went before I knew it the event was over. I raced around the track 3 times and it was over. The scores were added up and we finished in 11th place. Not bad! Not bad at all! We packed up and drove the 140 miles to Autobahn Country Club in Joilet, IL. Were we now sit and wait for the 4 PM est time racing. I will keep you all posted.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Day 1

Day 1: And One Lap has begun! What a crazy start to our morning. Derek's eyeglasses broke somehow in the middle of the night. He does not have a spare pair in the event these get toasted. I think it was the One Lap ghost that came into the room and broke them.

We came out of the hotel this morning felling refreshed from a great night sleep. One problem.... No one was at the hotel and all the drivers were already at the TireRack registration tent. Ummmm, I am an old military guy and showing up on time means your late! Derek and I raced over to the tent about 6 miles away to see a bunch of drivers already going through tech and putting the stickers on the car. We decided to join them. It took about 3 hours to get everything on and in order. Some teams had professional detailers/installers come out and install for them. Awesome work!

I had a good friend Blake Hutchinson from send me some shirts to wear at the event. If you want to drive down a airplane runway in your own car for a 1/2 mile this is the event to do it in. He recently posted an event this past week and it SOLD OUT IN 24 HOURS! This is one not to miss if you can do it! Thanks again for the shirts Blake!

Some of you might know and some not, that we have been picked to be a team on a possible reality TV show. The producer needed to mic us up and interview us today. This was really fun to do. I know I have the business Bob hat on sometimes, but my close friends know I am a character and love to crack people up. Now which way do you think I went? It was fun to do the first interview. Kirsty (producer) was super nice and we had fun. Isn't that what it's all about?

We then headed off to the first driver meeting. It was very informative and laid back. It's all about safety here. This is why I like this event. I know I am not a professional race care driver, so I am learning and this is my journey.

After the drivers meeting we had to go to the rookie meeting. This is Brock Yates Jr. He is the one who put on the event and has great staff with him. All very helpful.

Rita, here is your daily update on Derek. Yes he ate again!