The Story Of Daytona.
June 30, 2020. MOFO Race But Don't Race. Round 7. An event ought to be forgotten. This is the story of an oval distaster.
8pm. As per usual, the session opened at 8pm - regulars and newbies ("randoms") flooded into the session held at at Daytona.
The (first) grid top 5 would see some new names pop up - names such as Knox who got a very remarkable pole position, joined on the front row by Money.
Constanduros would line up on the second row with Shawe just behind. Herring would round out the top 5.
Truswell would also have a good day, qualifying 9th on the grid.
The entire field would be seperated by just a single second.
The pace truck Chevrolet would pull into the pits, and the field would roar away.
Having a little gap to the car ahead, Truswell could go flat out whilst those ahead had to lift to not crash into those ahead....on the backstraight (the second of the two longest straights) it was a slip-streaming frenzy.
Truswell was quite a far way from the yellow line that separates the banking from the apron and desperately needed to find a way back...and fast... A short skip across the grass bought Truswell back to the apron...
Truswell would touch the very bottom of the banking, unsettling his fully laden Skippy - what came next was inevitable....a spin.
Others behind would also join the wreck...it wasn't the way anyone wanted to start this race...
The pace car - as expected - came out to pick up the field and after four or five laps of pacing the green flag was waved - and no sooner had the green flag came out - there was another massive pile-up - though the original cause was a little blurry - a car spotted spinning on the apron seemed to be linked to this.
Truswell was unfortunately one of the victims of this accident.
With skippies piling in to the crash at top speed many drivers were not happy with the driving standards that were being displayed on track. The final straw was when an individual crashed into the leader during the pace lap. It was decided shortly after that this race would be abandoned and a passworded session would be put up to replace it.
The green flag would come out on lap 9 - but this would shortly return to caution after another two incidents would take place - the latter involving Truswell (who wasn't fully at fault) and causing him to return to the pits must have been very difficult.
The race was officially abandoned on lap 10 - and all but Truswell and a few others including Christodoulou quickly left.
With voice-chat and messages turned off, there was little to no way to contact Truswell
Truswell was third in line after Straw and Christodoulou on lap 12 whilst Tatro behind finished up the incredibly short train.
A lap later the green flag would wave, but a crash would happen between Christodoulou and one other...
Truswell would come in for a drive-through after coming into the pits when the pits were closed...(then resulting another penalty of exactly the same type) but even still - with just himself and one other driver on track....Truswell was clueless about the abandonment.
It took until at least lap 17 for him to notice anything was afoot - by this time qualifying for the new session was well underway.
Whilst Truswell was pointlessly going around, the starting order had been decided - Widdup would line up on pole, followed by Bradley, Money, Conway and Daman. 14 of the entries would complete valid laptimes.
Truswell had a long day ahead of him starting at the back of the grid...but with the slipstream of all those ahead of him, it would prove to be an interesting challenge.
There was another lap 1 shunt, taking out many cars. From 24th, Truswell was manage to climb to 14th in the first lap alone.
On Lap 5, the green flag was shown once more...only for another large accident to be caused....
Through this, Truswell managed to get into 10th place - and when the green flag waved once again starting lap 9, he was ready to make some moves. - passing Koster and unbelievably Bailes before the start of the next lap. He'd even have a sneak peek at Cleland!
With an excellent run out of turn two, Truswell was able to get the slipstream (using all of the track and more) and slip into the top 5 - before Daman made contact with Van Mourik - fortunately only just missing Truswell... Constanduros and Wood would get involved too - both having no-where to go.
In a shock turn of events, Truswell would line up second behind the pace car.
A poor getaway left Truswell in 4th...and this is where Truswell's downfall begins....had Truswell kept flat out, it was likely that with the momentum he had, he could pass Roodenberg for the lead, but about 3/4 down the straight, would ever so slightly come off full power, before lifting off entirely, and retreating to the banking in 5th place - he'd get the slipstream again on the final straight before the start/finish line - but there was no room to pass. He'd have to wait for another lap.
So far Truswell had managed to survive 1/4 of the race without any major drama.
Truswell's opportunities were running out - or he was getting smarter - and began to refrain from using the "apron" (under the yellow line) - but this got him stuck in the top 10 - jostling for positions, but unable to advance - and having touched Bailes, things weren't getting any easier.
Lap 19 however....it all ended it tears.
Truswell would be on the outside line going into the final corner, Boersma would be in the middle, and Bennett would be on the inside being pushed along by Christodoulou.
Being on the outer-most line, Truswell was the furthest from the racing line, allowing Widdup in 5th to overtake me on the inside, before taking the vacant outside line...
Boersma would drift ever so slightly to the left to defend from Bennett, touch wheels before correct to control his car - as the track went to the left, and Truswell was about to make a move for the lead on Widdup - Boersma and Truswell touch wheels - Truswell would get away almost scott-free, whilst Bennett would collect into Boersma or vice versa) before Bennett would re-bound back on track, just missing Christodoulou, but taking out Herring and Wood who was just a passenger.
Even if the accident was not Truswell's fault - he admitted that had he ran the race again, he would have waited for the pit-stop period to try and make serious positions instead of rushing to make a dangerous move
Truswell's race would go from bad to worse as he would get black-flagged (but not disqualified) for getting 10 incident points landing him a stop/go penalty.
Now the difficult bit - "Speedgate" - Truswell came out behind Koster, (P20) - since he didn't want to overtake under yellow flags - (and didn't know the driver of the car ahead, he stayed behind him.
But the real problem was behind.... Whilst the pace car was doing 80mph and just coming to start the 22nd lap, some individuals (who I will leave anyonomous) were doing 90mph - and since those behind couldn't overtake due to it being a caution - this caused absolute carnage - especially since some were on lap 19, some 20 and some even 21...the perpetrator in this case, was on the highest of all, 21.
Truswell's day wasn't getting any easier... Truswell's pit-stop on lap 19 was done when the pits were closed, prompting a drive-through or (stop/go) penalty, turning his 6th, into an 11th... upon leaving, he'd speed on the pit exit. Not wanting to do a whole nother lap, he would call the tow-truck to give him a hand park it back in his box.
Shortly after, returning back to the pits, another accident happened...once again involving the top 10
TL: The inevitable was about to happen TM: An innocent bystander gets hit TR: A close miss with the #20 car BL: A wild flight BM: A wild flight PT 2
The safety/pace car would come in for the final time on lap 27 - and with not long left in the race, it was all or nothing for many drivers, especially after such a disappointing race.
With it all getting incredibly tight, there was unsurprisingly a finish-line shunt, which took out a large portion of the front runners. After 33 controversial laps, in the end Shawe would win, followed by Cleland and Christodoulou wrapping up the podium - finishing behind them were: