I actually went into the final event LOSING by 3 points. My competitor had won the last event, due to three of our four hoosier tires wearing down to the METAL CORDS, granting us NO traction, and making it so slippery as to hardly be driveable. Truth be told, they'd been going off for two events before that as well, so while I should have been Waaaay ahead at this point, I wasn't. I NEEDED to win. If I won and $Nemesis got second place, I'd be tied on POINTS, but I'd have won one more first place, and therefore I'd win. Yeah, a nail-biter.
We had purchased new tires for the car, and the car owner Adam had lowered the car by an inch, AND taken out ONE-HUNDRED pounds of additional un-needed weight, in the form of the stereo and speakers, and AC system, all un-needed for racing. :) Sunday dawned pretty clear, and I thought we'd avoid the rain predicted, but no luck. Shortly after setting up the course, and right before my group ran (we were first, yuck), it started raining. MARVELOUS. $Nemesis has an All-wheel-drive Subaru, and so an advantage in rain, but I was still determined to win. I blew out for my first run, and.... promptly spun the car. Twice. Mmmm, cold tires on wet track. Well, at least I knew how fast I could go, and where. $Nemesis came in with a 72+second run, and with a downed cone. Muahaha.
My second run was MUCH smoother, and pretty fast for wet. The tires had some warmth in them, and I managed to improve a lot, driving clean, no cones, and quick! I ran a 70.7 second run, putting $Nemesis down 2 seconds in the rain. He ran a 71 second run clean, but he still was behind! Sweet!
Final Run. $Nemesis goes out before me, and immediately hit a cone just out of the start. I was pretty comfortable at that point, because unless he ran a 68 second run (which wasn't going to happen in the rain) I was almost assured of winning! I took off for my last run before I heard his time, and I was so unfocused that I actually missed an element entirely, which resulted in a DNF for that run, but it didn't matter. While $Nemesis managed to run .2 seconds faster than me in raw time for his final run, his cone was his undoing. My second place time held up!
Class winners get to run in a final run-off race called the "Stirling Moss" run-off. Those of you who have heard of Stirling Moss, well, this is a REAL trophy he won in a race back in 1956, at the Nurbrgring Grand Prix race. Here's some information on the trophy, it's a pretty cool story. Each class winner gets to try to match their best time for the day for a total of three runs, and the person that comes the closest on all three runs wins the trophy for the year, and has their name inscribed on it forever. It's a pretty big honor!
Well, I screwed up bigtime. All my morning runs had been in the rain, and now since it was DRY (it stopped raining around 1pm), the car handled entirely differently from before. Since I messed up so bad on run #1, I had no chance to win the trophy, so I just decided to go for raw speed. I drove the car my last few runs completely on the edge, with my FASTEST raw time ending up a 61.4 second run, but with a cone. My fastest clean run was a 62.X second run. I had been hoping to make it down to the 66-second region, so coming in with a 61 and 62 second time was GREAT. It showed Adam and I how fast the car could be I'll be damned if they weren't just the most fun runs I've taken in a long time, totally uninhibited in driving, as I'd already won the class.
So ended my driving season, and the Moss run-off? It was A TIE, for only the third time since 1968. This year, we had multiple Moss winners tie AGAIN. Lynee Rothney-Kozlak and Matt Murray ended up both winning, and so will have their names inscribed on it again. This is Matt's FIFTH time winning this trophy, and Lynne's Third. They become the only 3 and 5 time winners of the trophy. Cheers to them.
Oh, and cheers to me for FINALLY breaking my second-place curse. Now I feel like I really have earned my instructor wings in the group!