I did XDC Orlando this weekend. The track was basically a box of walls that you drift into, around, and out of. I started off practice on Saturday with a couple of warm-up runs. Then, I went for a real deal run and ate the wall. I misjudged how much grip the track had on my warm-up runs, entered way too fast/late to make it, and backed in the wall. From the exterior, it didn’t look that bad, but the frame rails in the back totally collapsed, and so did the rear subframe, which moved to the left a couple of inches and basically bent in half.So the rest of the weekend was just seeing how well I could drive a messed up car. The right rear suspension was locked in place because of the bent subframe, so transitioning to the left turn at the end of the course was a problem. It rained hard the rest of Saturday, so I didn’t practice. I got about five practice runs on Sunday morning, and then it was time for qualifying. I spun out on my first qualifying run but got a decent run on the second one and qualified 9th. There were a ton of good drivers at this event, so I was happy to at least qualify with the car in such bad shape.
I went up against Brian Peter in top 16. We were pretty evenly matched and entering the first turn at the same speed, so we had close tandem runs. We got a OMT after the first set and basically had identical runs again in the OMT. He ended up getting the win probably because my lead run was a bit weaker than his and he closed up more on me towards the end of the course. We were both doing “safe” entries like 90% of other people, so I probably could have beaten him with another sweet 85mph entry on my lead run. Either that or I would have eaten the wall again. Anyway, I had fun driving with Brian in that battle, and he deserved the win.