Ted flew into Cleveland airport from Seattle. Larry flew into DC from Chicago and drove the motor home over to Nelson Ledges. Bob joined by driving from Chicago to Cleveland and picked Ted up at the airport.
Larry, Ted and Bob practiced on Friday and Ted set a new personal best as compared to the Double National held at Nelsons last year. Larry and Bob both did well for their first time at the track.
On Saturday, in the morning session, Ted set a
new personal best for Nelson Ledges
and qualified with a 1.19.527. This qualified him in 5th position for Sunday's race. Since the morning was cool air and low humidity, Ted figured he would not get a better qualifying time in the afternoon, so he sat out the afternoon qualifying session with his older brother Larry. Only two back of the pack cars did improve their times in the afternoon. So Ted was smart not to tear up his car and needlessly tire himself before the big day on Sunday.
At the start of the feature race on Sunday while the green flag was being waved, Ted missed his 2nd to 3rd shift and backed up the pack a bit. A car hit Ted on the left side and spun - knocking itself and another car out of the race. This happened just 50 feet past the start/finish line (click to see video). The whole race was black flagged and restarted from scratch. Unfortunately, the two cars in the accident were not able to continue. This is a key point for SCCA National point standings since the first 10 cars behind the top 9 cars count as additional points. Once the race was restarted, Ted fell back to 6th place right at the start (making sure he made the 2nd to 3rd shift). He ran in 6th place for almost the entire race except towards the end when he had a slight spin in turn 13. He recovered quickly and was able to re-pass the car in front within two laps and finished the race in 6th place. In a National race, six place is worth 4 points. Since there were only 12 cars in the race after the two were knocked out at the start, there were only 6 cars behind Ted. The result was Ted only achieved 10 of the 11 points he needed to gain entry to the SCCA National Championships. One more race finishing at least ninth required...
Mike Collins finished 2nd behind Charlie Campbell with a 1:18.896 fastest lap. Larry Cahall finished 9th and earned 4 National Points in his very first National race. More photos on Facebook courtesy of Karen Dildei.
Nelson Ledges SM Start Crash
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