My Year So Far...

Updated: Dec 19, 2019

(It's Interesting, Compared to my last post, compare how positive I am in this one) Foreword Wow. What a week it's been! And it's only Wednesday! I've honestly lost track of time, so much has happened! So, without further ado, let's get on with it. November took over from October like how August shifted into October....very, very quickly! On the 2nd November, I went to my local fireworks display, and watched some stunning commercial fireworks (as opposed to consumer ones you can buy in store) which I found absolutely stunning. Looking back it's interesting to think about how much they spent on the fireworks themselves versus how much they made through ticket admission. This year marks 50 years since man landed on the moon, so, quite rightfully, the theme of the fireworks was landing on the moon.

Me personally, I prefer no theme and just "anything goes", but these were equally cool. For the first time in a long time, I rode on a couple of rides at the fair - including a mini (compared to the full-sized version) Ferris Wheel as well as dodgems. This year also marked the second time I ever went to the fireworks without my parents. (The first time, the event was closed before the fireworks began due to a major incident in which some children fell off a large inflatable slide) This year fortunately went without any problems. The day after this, the Big Kabort Argument happened. Between the 1st - 2nd November, we (moderators as well as other important members) were discussing improvements I could make to the team, and where I was going wrong, but then, on the 3rd November 2019, Joseph left. Following this, We lost 7 drivers within the space of 6 hours. More information can be found in the oldest blog-post on this site. Moving swiftly onto the 5th and 7th November, I had my first non-calculator and calculator Maths GCSE Exam. Usually I'd be stuck on questions, and not be able to complete them...but this year, I was able to complete the questions, just at a very slow pace (ensuring I was satisfied with my answer). This meant I ran out of time. I did check the questions at the end of the paper to ensure I wasn't missing anything I knew. This got me thinking - maybe the maths Exam/GCSE wasn't about preparing you for real/later life/college? Maybe it is a test to see how quickly you can complete a set topic of questions (that is taught over the year leading up to the exam) within 1 hour and 30 minutes.

It's 2019, and "acceptance" is all the rave - acceptance of different genders, sexualities, disabilities, races, people...but GCSE Exams (the very basic of exams - you are meant to pass this in primary school) is wanting you to complete complexly worded questions within a certain time limit. We all work in different ways - some work faster, some work slower, some prefer to have the question worded easier...and some would prefer only questions that related to everyday life. November So Far... From the 8th November, until now, has been absolutely crazy...and I am still trying to wrap my head around what's actually happened. Starting off on the 9th of November, we gained two new drivers - Kyle Jeong (who raced with us at the Bathurst 1000km) as well as a brand new driver called John Taylor. Kyle is half Australian (has Australian citizenship) and half Korean, and John is from the US.

This same week also showed a side of some of my team members that I have never seen before...genuine care, concern, sympathy and love.

I don't mean to turn this into a soppy love story, but a few of my drivers genuinely cared about me and what happened during/after the Big Kabort Argument.

I received some very nice messages from the drivers I was messaging. In particular I must thank Getu (Aitor) and Jaehan An for being so understanding, and sending me some very supportive/uplifting messages. Jaehan An was very sympathetic and gave me some points to think about.

João Paulo also stepped up. I honestly forgot until now that he's only been in the team since last month. And I have to admit, that how I "acquired" him was not morally right. Even though he was in a different team (RSR Esports, the metaphorical "father" of Kabort), I asked him if he wanted to join my team and he said "sure" - I'm unsure of the last time I hired someone from RSR Esports, but João is certainly the last that I will hire, since I (rather reluctantly) left the RSR server as I had no business with them, other than hiring drivers, and there was no new drivers to annoy.

João helped a significant amount, and I seriously appreciate that. Just to have somebody who was constantly online really helped me, so a huge thank you to him. He will be involved with the driver recruitment process in the future, as he has connections to RSR Esports, and can "do my dirty work for me".

A small mention must also go out to Kelson Penn who was also willing to help the team.

Without these individuals, I must admit, that I don't think I would've got up and continued. I don't think I would've resumed - I truly believe that I would have hung my head in my hands and just left Kabort to rot - but thanks to these individuals, as well as everything Kabort Motorsport have been through, we are here today.

The following day, was my final Maths exam...and all the way through it, I was incredibly confused...I was making progress - too much progress - I was going through the paper too fast and didn't quite understand how I understood the questions...I am still baffled to this day at how I made it to the end of the paper as the others were to difficult compared to this one...I thought as though I had done a question or more wrong...

No, I didn't know the answer to every question, and "significant figures" and "standard form" did confuse the life out of me... but I was able to answer the majority. I unfortunately believe that I haven't done enough to pass - neither revision or answer enough/difficult enough questions. Another 6 months or more of pain await me. The problem is that GCSE Maths is such huge topic covering so many individual subjects that there is only so much you can revise for in a certain amount of time. Hopefully, with another half year under my belt, I can get at least close to passing - not this attempt, but the one prior, I was 5 marks off passing/getting a 4/C. This year I believe I'm more looking at 10 or more marks off or so...but the writing is done, the exams have been sent and now it's all up to the "markers" (those who mark papers).

In January I'll find out...but I know already, that what I did wasn't enough. It just didn't feel right, like I didn't do well in either paper - especially with the time limit forcing me to rush the last few pages.

Enough negativity. The Past This year has truly been one of my biggest years in mental growth. Back in January, I made an iRacing account. At the time, I didn't think of it as such a big deal - I thought I'd play it for a good month at least, and then leave it....but little did I know that I couldn't be more wrong.... During my first season (12 Weeks) of racing, I got my first podium. This was such a huge achievement for me and I still remember crossing that line, being oh so close to finishing 4th (a gap of 0.311 seconds difference) After one hell of a blast in the Ferrari GT3 Challenge, and doing the multi-class "Lucky Le Mans 777" in week 13, I progressed into the 3 hour VRS (Virtual Racing Series) for season 3, 2019 (still driving the Ferrari GT3). After this, I progressed further and raced in the 6-hour, fortnightly, "ELMS" (Endurance Le Mans Series) Championship. During this season too, I drove a 488 - but this time the 488 GTE variant. Then, in May, not only did I pass my theory test, (done beforehand) I also passed my practical driving test, after a year and four months of lessons. With this licence, I've (pretty much) driven the length of the United Kingdom! Some of my most memorable trips were: visiting Wales twice, going to Milton Keynes (numerous times) visiting Bournemouth and Lower Knapp Farm with my late boyfriend. Also up there are the times I visited friends and family in Staines, Kingston and Windsor (one of my most frequent destinations)

Early Spring/Summer saw the creation (and "mini-boom") of Kabort Motorsport (previously Trussers Racing Team) - taking on the role of Team Owner/Principal and developing my leadership skills.

During this time my race-craft has shot through the roof since I first started

I still watch this video today and shout at the computer "Go! Go! Go! Gas! Gas! Gas!" "Stop dithering and dawdling!" "Drive!" "What are you scared of?" And saying that, it reminds me of my driving instructor, a rather vocal man, telling me to "get on with it", during my first days behind the wheel of my Mercedes GLA learner car (yes, I was spoilt ROTTEN compared to the peasants in those Astras, Corsas and other lower-class hatchbacks) - jk

I've also grown hugely mentally. From surviving the torrid February, I have also had to overcome the many people that were close to my heart whom passed away - first My Grandfather, then Charlie Whiting, followed by Antonie Hubert, the young, talented Formula 2 driver, after this, Drew, my boyfriend and most recently, a family friend that I haven't seen in a long time and wasn't close enough to remember. I must say, this has definitely been my hardest year - but I don't expect it to get any easier. We are all on the elevator of life - some fall early, but what's guaranteed is that we will all reach the top one day - and go somewhere new. And as I grow older, so do those older I, and sometimes our bodies can't take the abuse we hurl at them...and our body has no other option than to give up... Then it was time for the VRS Endurance Series...and simply put, I didn't enter 3, and we didn't finish 4 - leaving a total of 7 races un-complete. It was a tough season, but it was only the start, and there would be teething issues

Moving into late 2019, I've seen far too many people celebrate Christmas too early, the almost demise of my team (as seen in my other blogs), and the absolutely astonishing resilience of those around me - and in my team.

After so much was going well, something HAD to go wrong...and it did. It was this image which started the ball rolling...

such an innocent Image, held such a dark truth

I don't know how I found the image, but I was was a nice looking livery. I then went to Joseph's profile - there was no recent endurance races...I was slightly confused, so I searched the team up.

I was greeted by four teams - Eleven9 Motorsports, Blue, White, and Black. I clicked on one and was overcome with a small wave of betrayal. Gas Cohen and Nicholas Boccanfuso, sitting in the team, shortly after they left

Intrigued by the other teams - I opened them up. and felt worse.

Every single driver who had left Kabort Motorsport within the past week was there. Marcel Van Den Berg. Mark Zuidhof. Shaw Syska. Jamie Moylan. Dave South. Daniel Newell. All of them.

From Shaw: "I’m stepping down from Kabort. I just think the direction the team is heading is not where I want to be. Thanks for the opportunity and good luck with the team."

From Jamie: "Robin sorry to inform you but im taking a break from iRacing for a while as I need to focus on school and work for next year racing. I’ll probably be gone for next season. Thanks anyway "

From Dave: "Let's be honest things have not gone well. I am aware of things that have gone on and seen some the changes that were tried. In short I don't want a repeat of the same as it takes the enjoyment out of it. I think now is the time for a clean break. I have to possibly of another opportunity but its early days. Wish you the best for the future."

What I didn't realise was that when I asked him "Sebring?" (meaning, will you be at Sebring?) he actually meant that he would have sorted himself out by Sebring. From Marcel

Marcel: I am racing next weekend, but I will be honest with you, next weekend will be my last race Robin: Oh no, why?Schedules/Stints? Bad Organisation?

M: I Already told you couple weeks ago, Kabort has many active drivers on discord but if it comes to race just a few people (almost the same people) are racing. For example How many races did you did this season? R: 2. (As of before Twin Ring) But that's to keep my parents happy - to make them think I'm doing college work. But if you count Bathurst, and the Mental Health race...that's 4.

Thus far I have done every other race which isn't great. But next season - Marco's doing karting. Jamie's going to do full time Legends racing

M: I like to drive with a few dedicated and skilled people. I don’t need the endless discussion on discord, every day I have to overlook more than 10 channels with messages. R: and I'm scared if Max will get the licence or not.. I know you like driving with dedicated drivers, so do I....

M: So that’s what I am going to do, drive with just 3 or 4 people, keep it simple and easy. R: I don't think Marco is going anywhere, Dave will (hopefully) return Nicholas is (was) also considering I mean, we still have 17 guys here M: For example Saturday I did the 3 hours VRS with mark and Sunday the 3 hours with Daniel, both races was fun and high level racing

R: Mark Zuidhof?! (Who'd been quite inactive with Kabort Motorsport)

M: Yes, he is my real life friend for 25 years, live in the same town

It's going to be tough - I can say that much. Only 2 Gold Ferrari Drivers, and 3 Regular Ferrari Drivers remain...all will definitively improve, but we have the odds stacked up against us...

For GTE...

However, on the LMP1 side of things, things look slightly different...We will be running 2 cars in total - 1 car of 4 drivers, and 1 car of 3 drivers. The car of four is filled with Korea's finest drivers - the unbeatable; Jaehan An, Yu Sung Yune, Yoonho Jung, Jae Heon Bang, Chang Mun Ryu and Kyle Jeong (Half Australian). After 2 of these drivers managed to get 4th in the Bathurst 1000km, I am honestly so excited to see what they produce at Sebring.

On a final note, I'd like to thank every single person who's read this entire article ever so much. I know I say it every single time, but it just means so much to me that people actually care about my life, and what's going on inside my crazy little world. Thank You and Godspeed

Robin Truswell