Update from Daytona
My first trip to the Daytona International Speedway was a success. There were so many new things to learn with car and track but I think I took it all in stride. Overall, I had a good time with my new team, Performance Tech Motorsports.
The MPC car felt fast at first, it’s a very smooth and strong car. I’m coachable so it didn’t take too long to get a feel and get up to speed. It was a matter of understanding how downforce works because I hadn’t driven a car with downforce until this weekend. You have to feel the experience to really understand what it’s like to trust the car won’t slide down the banking.
The track isn’t technical but it’s still a lot of fun. I love the little bit of road course mixed with the banking. Daytona has a nice infield section of track. It just isn’t as technical as other courses but you’ll still enjoy the track. It’s very smooth, really seamless in transition.
It was a true team effort this weekend, I had everyone helping me out including James French who drives the Prototype. We put a lot of thought into what we wanted to do this year. What kind of race car I wanted to drive even. After this weekend, I couldn’t be any happier, couldn’t ask for any better team. There’s no negative energy. They all work so hard and take into consideration everything you say when setting up the car.
When working with a new team, it always takes some time to learn how to communicate feedback. I’ve had to give feedback before. That isn’t new, in go-karts it was me and my dad in the back of a pickup truck. I would explain to him what was going on and he’d fix it or change whatever I needed. So that wasn’t new but you do have to learn how to talk to each other.
Sometimes I’ll describe something and they’ll just tell me they don’t know what I’m talking about so you have to describe it differently or better. I think the fact that I’ve given feedback before will help this year because we’ll learn to communicate better, faster. That makes the car faster. Everyone wants to improve.
My whole goal this weekend was to take my time getting a feel for the car. I had never been on any banking or in a downforce car so it was all about taking my time. No racing, just learning. I feel like I walked away this weekend having accomplished that goal.