10/06/2007

Where do I begin

Wow, what a night. This is going to be a long post with quite a few pictures so you might want to get a coffee! I know I need one. We started out heading up to the Hoche Hacht (the highest point on the circuit to try our hand a night photography. About this time Kurt Thim was driving the car, and boy was he moving. RJN had moved up to 19th overall! In fact they were faster than the Falken 350Z! This small private team was taking on the big hitting factory backed race team! And they were beating them! All was going well, when we decided to move location to the town of Adenau. This little hamlet has a bridge that carries the Nurburgring right over the hamlet. So alot of people go to spectate there. It was a few miles away and despite being 3am there was heavy traffic. In al it took us nearly an hour to travel 9 miles.



By the time we got there it was fast approaching 4am. There was a heavy fog coming in and visibility was terrible. At this time the race control decided to halt the race! There had been a very bad accident in the fog and the inital halting was set to last 1 hour.
At this point the cars that were out on the track were bunched up and brought into the pitlane. There was no Park Ferme. Afterall how to you secure 278 cars?
On approach to the pits the RJN car started to overheat. The cause of the problem was later diagnosed as a broken head gasket. As the race had halted there was now an oppertunity t fix the fault. However there was also the fact that if it hadnt been for the halting of the race RJN might not have had a gasket failure.

Over in the Falken pits they deicided that now would be a good time to put a new 3.8 liter engine in.


Bob Neville on the other hand had big problems. He didnt want to damage the engine further but he also wanted to finish the race. A meeting was called of all the members of the team to discuss the best option.

It was now approaching 6 o'clock and the fog wasnt clearing and the race wasnt starting. After a long disucssion that involved every member of the team that had worked so hard to make it happen this weekend it was decided to temporarily fix the engine and drive it to finish the race.
It was a brave decision. Bob knew his team had pt in 200% effort to get this far. His drivers were driving it like it was on fire! And they were doing very very well. So why give up?
The car was put out when the team knew full well that they were effectively putting the car to a hero's death. It was a very serious moment. Ill never forget watching the car and the team push it round to the garage so that they could work on it. Coming out of the fog all at once it looked fantastic.

A gladiator in an automotive green hell. Going out with a fight. The race finally started again at 9.30
The car was ready and was sent out effectively to its doom. It had been given a final clean

and was ready to go for broke....and let me tell you it flew!

More to follow shortly..........