Week 2-3rd by .011

Pretty awesome car the team is giving me so far this season. This car is so strong it’s been a blast to race. I am learning a ton right now running up front every week, starting on the pole. As with all learning curves I am making some mistakes, more to come on that later.

Ole Red, as we have affectionately named the car, is a beast. It seems whatever combination we throw at it the thing is strong. I am looking forward to an awesome season at Evergreen Speedway. Let’s get to this weeks review.

We unloaded and the car was fast, fastest in practice for the second week in a row. We made a minor change, but nothing overly drastic. It’s all about fine tuning right now, just making small tweaks for big peaks!

Qualified first for the second week in a row. Awesome .3 seconds quicker than the field. Two poles in a row is not only a first, but that make 3 poles in my racing career. I am pumped about the pole position and it feels great.

Heat Race.
Here is where the night got a little frustrating, only for a moment. For the second weekend in a row Tom schooled me on the start, I got second. The HIGH Point of the heat race was driving the car back to his bumper and wearing him out. I got to race in really close quarters with Tom. We’ve done that a few times now and I am learning a lot about proximity. For instance, I thought my left front fender was rubbing on his right rear corner, but not so. I’m pretty sure I was as close as I could be without touching, if we had a few more laps in the Heat Race chances are I could have made the pass.

I am learning a lot right now, especially starts. I’ve been told by drivers whom I really respect that Tom is the best at starts. I am encouraged, even though I’m getting a whooping right now, because WHEN I beat him it will be a BIG day!!!

We started outside row 2 in a four car invert. After getting schooled on the start in the heat I was determined not to let Tom get the jump. I started strong, but there was an early caution. I restarted again in 4th, behind my buddy and TRC’er Fred Hall #6. We got a good jump, but mayhem ensued and I turned Fred. We both slid off the track.

I was picking my way through the grass off turn one onto the 5/8’s and whamo, I got hit in the right rear, or better yet, landed on. Seems the #15 got some air off the banking and landed on me tearing up the right rear quarter panel. Ole Red was angry, a good angry.

We went back green and I got the lead, but an oiled down track relinquished me to 2nd before the caution flew to clean stuff up. I restarted 2nd, but the track was super slick. I couldn’t get any bite and dropped to 4th. A late red flag left me thinking about what was going on with the night, and with only 5-7 laps or so remaining I determined to set my sights on getting to the front. Sitting in the car I was a little disappointed that this one had gotten away, but with what we had left I knew Ole Red could get me to the front.

I passed for 3rd on the restart. Ole Red started eating up the track like a fat kid on Cherry Pie, I gained on 2nd. With the laps winding down I made some moves to the outside of the #16, eventually getting there, but it was a little too late. I crossed the finish line in 3rd outside of the #16, by .011 seconds. That’s pretty close.

Reality was if I had another lap I’d have passed for 2nd, and if we had the total laps run of 40, instead of 25, I think I could have worked my way to racing with Tom for the win. But hey, the car was in good condition, just some cosmetic fixes; the night was full of cautions and reds, the reason the race was cut short; my team gave me another fast race car, fastest at the track for 2 weeks in a row; and I am hungry for some W’s, like a fat kid wanting Cherry Pie!

Where’s my Cherry pie from Snohomish Pie Company?

Weekend Reflections

Here are some high points from our weekend at The Rock Church!

The best “weekend after Easter” service in our history!

  • 75+ water baptisms.
  • The place was jammed.
  • The worship was slammin.
  • It was an amazing day.

My Lifesaver.
A few weeks ago we handed out a white Lifesaver as a representation to all those we were believing to be saved! My Lifesaver was John. Well, John came to church the week before Easter for the first time. On Easter he gave his life to Jesus during the altar call and let us know by filling out a Connect Card. Then today, he went “public” in the waters of baptism. I cannot even put into words how amazing this day was! Can you say, Crowd, Cause, Community!!!

  • All of you who faithfully give to The Rock Church do great things. You set the tone for every ministry. The gospel takes generosity to present at the level you are presenting. Thank you, I think of you daily, and pray for your continued success!
  • Those who have chosen to step up their game and volunteer in all areas of the ministries are taking us to another level. Your efforts are world class and making Jesus famous!!!
  • The Connect Card. This very simple tool is showing us that our church can be “Big enough to Serve you, small enough to know you.” Keep working with it every single week!!!
  • The passion. The passion at TRC is breathtaking! There is nothing more powerful than passion!!!! I see it every week in the lives of people from the parking lot to the pulpit. Keep the passion alive!!!
  • The SERVE. It’s grassroots, epic, and ANYONE can do it. Get on board with the Serve!!!

I am still marveling in our biggest weekend ever at The Rock Church. 1,739 people, 114 commitments to Christ, and 36 first time salvations.

  • The coolest part is that for the first time in our history we are able to connect with everyone of those people after the service is over. Thank you Connect Card.
  • Also the media team produced the first song and it is epic. I’ve watched it 939 times!!!
  • The parking crew! Awesome strategy!
  • The data entry team from First Impressions. Watching the hundreds of Connect Cards getting inputted for follow up is a dream come true. Awesome team.
  • The give-aways!!! So many awesome businesses contributed to our dream. Thank you.

A Heart for The House.
If you have A Heart for The House at TRC I’d ask you to continue seeking the Lord about what he would have you do for A Heart for The House!!!!

Opening Night 2010 at Evergreen Speedway

It feels great to post this update. Knightrous.com has been pretty dormant over the winter. Not to worry, in a few weeks we will have a brand new look and with the race season upon us it’s time to get to some racing recaps, reviews, discipleship and of course the local church!

We took both cars apart after the Fall Classic run. The open motor car is a work in progress as we focused our attention to the crate car. First off, we stripped it down to the chassis for brand new powdercoat. Production Plating Inc hooked us up with a gloss white for the chassis. After getting the chassis back Steve, Tony, Toby and Myself, along with the help of Will, Roger, Tony S. and some others started the reassembly process. We cleaned parts, components, changed a couple minor things, but most importantly turned it from purple to red! Brent from Firedown helped out the finishing effort and the car was ready for the track. Awesome off season.

Side note: Getting the hauler ready was not such an easy chore. Thursday night, while charging the batteries one of them blew up in my face. Seriously, at an arms length a deep cycle marine battery exploded by my left hand. I had no safety glasses or protection from the explosion. Miraculously I was unhurt, no acid in my eyes, or on my face. I am a blessed man!!! However, I had the “Call of Duty” flash grenade syndrome when my ears were ringing and my vision disoriented. Thankfully God watched out for me.

Race Day.
Snohomish Pie Company got us to the track with some race tires, fuel and pit passes! I appreciate the help very much, and anyone rooting for the 70 needs to go buy a piece of pie and tell them, “Jeff sent you from the track.” Your effort will put more fresh Goodyears under my race car!!! Fresh pie = Fresh Tires!!!

We unloaded at the track on Saturday. Usually we test a bit in the off season, but this year funding is tight, so we elected to make the car perfect in the shop and show up ready to be fast. The knowledge we’ve gained as a team the last two seasons paid off big time as we set the fastest lap in practice.

With minimal laps on the car I was confident in the setup. the car was “in the track” meaning it was turning good and getting the power to the ground. We qualified on the pole! That’s my second pole!

Heat Race.
Starting from P-1 was great. On the first start I went a bit early. I didn’t think it was “huge” early, but the officials didn’t agree, and I got the nasty black flag warning to “not do that again.” On the next restart the car outside of me jumped! I spun the tires and gave up the lead right away. The car was hooked up pretty good after the start and we turned the fastest lap in the race, but didn’t win the heat. I asked someone why I got the caution for jumping the start and he didn’t? The answer, “Because he’s a 8 time track champion.” Well, Okay then.

The Main.
After the invert I started outside row two in 4th position. I got to the lead after a few laps, and checked out by about 15 lengths, turning the fastest lap of the main. Things were going pretty smooth until another car got backwards and the caution came out. Again I was P-1, and on the restart I got a good jump, but so did the 12 car outside of me. We went down the back stretch side by side. It was tight tight racing. As I went into turn 3 the car pushed really bad because the left front tire locked up. It was all I could do to not wreck Tom, but the worst part was I fell to second place, argh.

It wasn’t over though. Tom got a way from me a bit, but as the race went on my focus was laser like. I reeled him back in and was banging on his bumper when a small distraction caused me to overdrive the car with 9 laps to go. I went from racing to “savin it” down the backstretch! Once I gathered it up I was back about 6 lengths. We got to his bumper again with 2 to go, but didn’t have the time to try and pass him. If only we had another couple laps. I ended up 2nd.

I was stoked about the day. Of course I wanted to win. I always want to win, but to have the car in one piece, the fastest laps in practice, qualifying, heat and race were high points for sure. The truth of the matter is I have to work on my restarts. I haven’t been in the P-1 for restarts very often, and with a cagey veteran like Tom Moriarty I stand to learn a lot.

I am so proud and thankful for Steve, Tony, Toby, Stevie and the whole team. We got a great race car and it’s going to be a great season. See ya next race at Evergreen Speedway.