Thursday, April 12, 2012

What's more important?

In February we attended the Dirt Nitro Challenge in Phoenix, Arizona. During the race, the days were extremely long due to the amount of racers at the event. I believe there were around 560+ entries in the 1/8th classes. With all of this time I watched most racers tune their cars, talk setup and tire choices, discuss the latest rumors of which driver is doing what and other general gossip. Watching all of this inspired me to write this blog post. I witnessed many of the drivers not watching the track. This was from the pro's to the amatuer's. Many years ago while I was working along side Gil Losi Jr. he suggested for me to go to a major event and not race. I thought to myself "what the heck is he thinking? I can't go to a race and not race." I asked him why and he wouldnt tell me. Well I never did do what he said and as my racing started to come to an end in 2008 and 2009 I started attending events to help the team rather than race. Whether it was an electric or nitro race, I would go solely to help out. Then it hit me and I understood what Jr. was talking about many years ago. Going to the race and not racing helped me realize and taught me more about the track than driving on it. After many of the races I swear I could pick up a car and drive it around the track picking up the fast lines quite easily. Why? Because I just watched cars all week put thousands of laps on the track. My point here is not telling you to go to races and not race but when you go racing focus on spending more time watching the competition and others go around the track. Watch the lines racers are taking, pay attention to the tires they're running and how they're car is handling. You will be truly amazed at the information you will pick up on and this visual data will astound you. Then when you run your car, in practice or a qualifier, you can make better decisions on line choice, track changes, and tire selection. We learn from watching, not from sitting in our pit area bench tuning our car's or gossiping about the latest rumors. At the end of they day we are racing to win and watching the track is the cheapest tuning part you can add to your race program.

Race on!


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