Monkey is off my back

What an amazing race. So far 2007 has produced some amazing racing for my #38 BimmerWorld E90. We have seen lots of passing action along with lots of speed. In both races this year I have had the fastest race lap along with two top-10 finishing positions. It is looking up for our BMWs. But back to the important race so far, VIR!

I love this track. It is awesome to come to BimmerWorld's home track where both James and I can put on a show in front all our family and friends in attendance. We both were very disappointed after qualifying as we definitely left some time on the table. We were both also scratching our heads as to why we couldn't go faster. At that point though we knew we could race well.

As James has said the weather was looking iffy for our race. It was looking like rain was inevitable and we were going to test out the new Toyo R888 tire for the first time in the wet. We both knew the race was going to start off dry but at some point it looked like we would have to make the switch.

As we are sitting on the starting grid I was waiting for the lights to come on. They are on, I rev the engine, the lights are out and I blow the start not getting the start I thought I should. This didn't hurt me though as I put my head down and headed off to T1 as quick as I could. The first lap was very tight racing as VIR is a very narrow track with all these fast cars hurling through the uphill esses. I had good run up the esses and had my eyes set on picking off somebody at the top of the hill. The door was open to get around PD and I took it. We has some small contact as I was squeezed to the inside but I came out ahead. This allowed James to get a good run out on us both and away he went in front. We continued on in this order until the front straight where I had a big run on James and asked him to let me by. He kindly did and we worked together catching up to the guys in front of us.

James and I caught the leaders. I got around Espenlaub and was catching up to the next 3 guys. It was funny as I caught all the cars I kept watching the black clouds moving towards the track in the distance. This is not the sign I wanted as we were having the race we finally wanted. Even though I could see the clouds moving, I knew I had to work my way up to the front as fast as I could because if it did rain I needed to be in a position for the lead. And being in this position is what paid off. I ran my race right behind the leaders doing everything I could to pass them. Fortunately the guys in front of me made mistakes that cost them the lead. Chip spun it in one giving me a spot. Pierre did the same in Oak Tree giving me another. The next spot was to pass the new race leader. Kuno and I went after it lap after lap. I would be faster in certain sections of the track. He would be faster in others. We were pretty much dead even. I could use his draft to catch him on the straights and pop out to attempt a pass. He would defend the position and keep it. Kuno made a couple of small mistakes that helped me to get up beside him in several spots on the last lap. Every time though I would be in a spot where I could not capitalize on the position. We cross the line bumper to bumper with my first podium.

As for this weekend the BimmerWorld crew did an amazing job giving me the setup I needed to be up front. They changed enough springs to break in their new GearWrench tools. We also had a lot of fun visiting with the home crowd. It really did mean a lot to put on this show in front of the BimmerWorld home fans. Spraying champagne for the first time in my career at VIR is a perfect situation. Having James there beside makes it even better. We predicted a BimmerWorld 1-2-3 and we nailed that down pretty close.

Making this weekend better we headed home on Sunday to help celebrate my nieces' second birthday on Sunday. Maybe if this were her first birthday I might have won. ;-)