Dan, the unofficial head of the Trackwhore faction of BDR, led another successful BDR trip down to VIR.
The trip started in typical BDR fashion: late. After gathering at the Marc’s house, Dan, John, and Marc set out to get gas and electrolytes. By the time John had acquired chicken finger sustenance, and everyone had gotten Gatorade, 87 octane fuel and air, the trip down 29 began.
Rubberneckers conspired to make the trip take forever. Well, some blame falls on the guy who flipped his truck on its side, and the Subaru Tribeca and Mercury Cougar who were in another accident a ways down the road. But soon enough, Charlottesville had been reached, and with it, the Classy Exxon. Paul was en route, so John, Dan and Marc hung out for a while. Paul managed to miss Marc’s Ronald McDonald edition 993, and continued down 29. The rest decided to follow.
In what can only be described as a “John moment”, BDR had its first recorded lost article of clothing. John was sitting at the final Charlottesville stoplight, trying to wiggle out of the longsleeve shirt he had over his SGI t-shirt. In a normal seat this would be easy, but with Sparco Evos and 6-point harnesses there is some technique involved. It is, after all, a Miata, lacking the elbow room of some of the larger cars on the market.
In the middle of John’s struggle with the shirt, the light turned green. Marc, who had been paying attention to the traffic signals, used his advanced “accelerate away from the light” technique. John FINALLY got the shirt off, and in his hurry to get the car moving forward, threw the long sleeve shirt against the window with a lot of zeal.
Unfortunately for John (and by extension, the shirt), the passenger side window had been rolled down an hour prior. John noticed that the shirt, rather than being crumpled up inside the car, was crumpled up outside the car. John had a decision to make: stop the car, block traffic, unbuckle, grab the shirt, and then get back in, rebuckle and start driving… or, decide that he didn’t really like that shirt very much anyway, and leave the shirt’s fate in someone else’s hands.
The latter was chosen. The shirt is missing and presumed very flat.
After catching up with Paul, the crew advanced on VIR. The tech inspection was allegedly from 5:30 to 7:30, but despite arriving at 6:45, all four drivers made it through tech successfully. After a surprisingly short wait at Outback, the team retired to the Comfort Inn to experience the finest in Danville hospitality.
Saturday finished without carnage. After the standard Comfort Inn continental breakfast, and a trip to Sheetz for some MTO and Gatorade (Sheetz trip #2), the team advanced in Marc’s Armada to the event.
It was a relatively uneventful day of driving. Everyone’s car seemed to hold up pretty well. Traffic was relatively low, thanks to the absurd size of the Grand East course.
Over the day, something like a quarter of a jug of water and 16 20oz Gatorade bottles were consumed. Hydration is key.
Dinner was had at Ryan’s. Paul showed up a little late, having to Zaino his car before arriving. John was fairly furious that the softserve ice cream machine would not produce the chocolate/vanilla swirl that gives soft serve ice cream that little extra something, and that there were no rainbow jimmies (sprinkles for most of you). After another trip to Walmart to get more Gatorade the team retired to watch bad cable and review track video.
Morning: Comfort Inn breakfast and Sheetz (trip #3). Do you see a pattern here? Quoth Dan: “It’s like I never left.”
I think everyone got solo’d at some point on Sunday. No carnage. Paul’s car began to smoke, but it was just extra oil. Unfortunately it kept happening and he was blackflagged. By the end of the day it had been settled. John’s Miata was down a half a quart of oil, but that too was handled with little effort.
After a trip back up 29 where John had no gas (the Miata doesn’t have a gas light, either), and almost no brakes (the car was on the screamers, but John didn’t feel like putting the replacement pads in) they stopped for dinner at Cracker Barrel (another BDR trackwhore tradition). Video was watched, cracks were made about talent, and country fried steak was consumed. Green beans were not.
Another two hours brought Sheetz visit #5 on the weekend. Caffiene was purchased to keep everyone buzzed enough to stay on the road. Everyone split up and headed home.
VIR-Grand is a blast – it was an awesome weekend.