Equipment for Race Day Requirements

Mike Poupart Motorsports has the equipment you need to meet your race day requirements!

AMBit Transponders (get your own and don't get left out!) 380.00 for hard-wired
420.00 for rechargeable

Call us for your HANS device and custom fitting. This is now required by GCRS! We can also order all safety equipment, belts, window nets helmets, Hoosier race tires, etc.

Mike Poupart Motorsports
504-472-0400
130 Veterans Blvd., Suite E Kenner, LA 70062 mikepoupartmotorsports.com

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Bryan Racing Lapping Day - Jan. 5, 2008

Three words - "What a blast!"
That's how I would describe my initial seat time today in the BCI Motorsports #02 Corvette at No Problem Raceway. I was pretty nervous at first since I was driving someone else's car and didn't want anything to go wrong. After all, Dennis Gros, who is the regular driver in the Grand Bayou Race Series, is still running for series points and I didn't want anything to mess that up for him. I think I actually had a mini anxiety attack while I was suiting up before my first session out in the car. I kept reminding myself to 'breathe.'

We actually missed the first session for the the group I was scheduled to run with. We had trouble getting me high enough in the car and getting the seat belts adjusted properly. After getting in and out of the car at least six times, unbolting the seat from the floor to access the sub belt, trying two different seat inserts and borrowing a towel for added padding, I finally found the magic combination to fit comfortably in the car.

I drove the car around in the pit area before heading for the grid. My initial goal was to get a feel for the car and see how it handled. As I pulled up to the line and waited for the signal to enter the track, Chris Wilken (the car owner) comes over to the car, leans in towards the window net and tells me that the tires are "Flintstonian" so be prepared to run on old hard slicks. Great - not like I wasn't nervous enough!

After a few laps, I came in to let Chris and Mike check the fluid levels and temperatures and went back out for a few more laps. The car sputtered a bit here and there and, since I didn't want to push it too hard without letting the guys check it out, I came on it and called an end to that session. I was a bit shaky getting out of the car, which I sort of expected. The car is loud compared to other cars I've taken around the track at NPR and gives a false sense of going fast just because it is loud. Actually, I wasn't going that fast - not yet anyway.

The passenger seat was bolted in so that Mike & Chris could ride with me on track and critique my driving lines and braking zones. We had a few little mechnical issues that were worked on throughout the day. Later, brake pads were changed and the "big" tires were put on. Having sticky tires and knowing the brakes were fresh gave me a lot more confidence and I started going faster.

Having two people that I respect with varying driving styles work with me was very special. With Mike & Chris you get compliments and critisism all coated with a good dose of teasing. Mike drove with me as a passenger for several laps. Chris went out in the same session in the red #01 BCI Motorsports Corvette to do a bit of lead/follow with me. Chris rode with me in the last session and teased that he had time to get out for a burger when I went through turn 3 and, after he gently grabbed the steering wheel to pull me closer to the wall on the front straight, I got closer on each successive lap. Tom Walter later told me he put a stop watch on me and I had gone from very slow mid 1:40s in the morning to consistent 1:36s by the end of the day. All in all, I got high marks from my instructors and lots of support and compliments from the other racers and course workers who were watching.

The ear-to-ear grin on my face at the end of the day was well worth it for everyone. I even did a little dance 'cause I passed two people in the last session. It really is the little things in life that make it all worthwhile! I'm looking forward to running one more session in the car tomorrow during the red group practice/warm-up of the Grand Bayou Race Series.

Thanks to Chris Wilken for giving me a great day in the race car and to my loving husband, Mike, for supporting me, for working hard on the car and with me so I would have fun, and for picking up the camera and taking some photos of me racing! You guys are great! I also want to thank my friends, Meg & Karl, for coming out in the morning to give moral support for my first session in the car. It was great to have them there!

View and order photos taken at the Jan. 5, 2008 Bryan Racing Lapping Day from Poupart Photos!

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