Topic: Sonoma (March 2017) Saturday crash before the carousel...
Hello there Lemonsers,
I'm writing this post for a few reasons;
I'm one of the owners of the #581 Volvo wagon ("days of thunder, six feet under") with the flopping coffin in back. I was driving when this crash occurred Saturday at approx 1130am, and luckily for our team-made it through with only some mild body damage. Unfortunately, two other cars weren't so lucky. The "Misfits" Jag is a total loss, and the black and blue 300zx with the american V8 motor might be a total loss as well. There were a number things that occurred to cause this crash, and it wasn't until Sunday afternoon that I was able to watch a video of the incident.
I spoke with Judge Steve ("who all was driving' when this crash happened?") saturday night when he came to get my side of the story. I explained that I remembered hearing an impact/tire screech prior to the Z and I coming together, and that my brain then assumed some sort of impact had happened behind us to cause us to hit just at the flag station before the carousel. It was our contact that caused the Z car to rotate into the path of the approaching Misfits Jag, thereby ending both of their team's racing for the weekend. Luckily, no one was hurt, and thank goodness we are required to have all of the latest safety gear in our cars.
I've learned a few lessons from this weekend, and I'd like to share them with y'all;
I thought that crash was just a big pile up that had happened behind me, and consequently, didn't approach either the Misfits Jag or the Z drivers to find out what happened, see if they were ok, and just generally check in. I didn't even bring them a beer that night. I had so much other stuff going on with our car that I forgot about them. That's my bad. I should have checked in, at least offered a "sorry that happened, glad you guys are ok" at each of their pits. Any Lemons driver that has a few races under their nomex belts has been involved in some sort of contact (judges-earmuffs!) and we don't always report them, or unfortunately-acknowledge each other afterwards. Sometimes accidents go unnoticed, and we "get away with it". I'm not saying we should make dinner for another team if our bumpers touch (not that there's anything wrong with touching another man's bumper), but if involved in an actual "crash", we should check in with each other. Despite some of our cars having anal probes mounted to the roof, a 6' coffin flopping around inside of them, or 387 pictures of Liam Neeson plastered all over them, car racing is a gentleman's sport- and I didn't act accordingly.
I'm sorry for that.
Video cameras tell THE story of what happened. I remember a distinctly different version of what happened. The driver of the Z has his story. The Misfits driver as well...it wasn't until I ACTUALLY WATCHED THE VIDEO, that I saw that the car I thought hit the Z from behind, causing him to come into my side-didn't actually exist... it was a combination of a pretty animated yellow flag waver-possibly not seen by all the drivers, the position of the sun, a large pack of cars going 3 wide into the carousel, and just plain bad luck... right place, wrong time-that whole thing. Luckily, the camera recorded everything that happened, and the Judges were able to watch the video 20 times. They determined that it was just that- a shitty accident, that unfortunately happened-and didn't penalize anyone involved.
I just got off the phone with Dan, the owner/driver of the Z, and I spoke with the driver of the Misfits Jag (Jake?) on Sunday at the track when I was able to watch the video. Both drivers were really gracious, despite being in horrific accidents, and at least one of their cars being completely totaled (even for Lemons racing-which is really saying something).
Anyway- I just wanted to say here-in public- that it sucks that accident happened, it sucks that 2 cars got totaled, and most of all- I'm sorry I didn't check in on the other drivers involved in the crash. Talking to Dan on the phone this morning made both of us feel better about what happened, and he was glad I called. I'm glad, too.
This is a fantastic group of idiots, and the "community" it what keeps this whole thing going...don't fuck it up.
Thanks for reading, now go back to welding a 1/10th scale replica of mount rushmore on top of your 82 Datsun wagon or whatever. See you on the track!
#581 84 volvo wagon
"Days of thunder, Six feet under"