All the phone calls, emails, passion pleas, the various part-time jobs, the gofundme, gala, the 12 hour days that turned into 20, and the extremely humbling show of support from my friends and family - all of it was absolutely worth it because mama, I finally bought a damn racecar!
The vehicle is a '95 Acura Integra fully stripped down and prepped for SCCA's STL class which I'm hoping to use to compete in the Majors series, the top amateur level in the States
And having recently moved back home with the folks in order to make this dream a reality, at close to 30 and having lived on my own since college, let's just say it hasn't been the easiest situation for both parties involved (definitely say goodbye to my dating life), especially now with a full-blown racecar that's also resettled in my parent's garage.
But man am I grateful for how understanding my folks have been and for eventually coming around and doing what they could to support my dream. Am I embarrassed to be living back at home at 29 years old? To be honest, sure, a little bit. But right now some momentum is building and with the goal of reaching the pros ever closer than before, then right now I'll do whatever's necessary to make this dream happen.
That said, as prepared and well-informed as a person can be, when I first got this car I was incredibly overwhelmed. Thank god for beer, and for my close friends always stopping by to lend a hand, maybe some shit-talk, but also usually some encouragement.
Jordan, a fellow instructor and coworker of mine graciously helping me with some welds
Even Tiffany, Jordan's fiance' was kind enough to help out in our 'paintbooth'
New tow hook installed as well as some aluminum splitter support rods to cope with the extra downforce
And even though I don't have enough funds yet for a truck or trailer, I was fortunate enough for one of my sponsors, Hana Japan, to lend me their FJ Cruiser to tow my car on a Uhaul to its first shakedown test at Thunderhill Raceway Park in Willows, CA
Once again, Jordan and Tiffany were kind enough to be my support crew for the day and thankfully enough, the first test of the car went flawlessly as well as allowing for some good seat-time for myself to learn a completely new car and track
There's certainly a long way to go and a little more fundraising needed to be done, but it all has to start from somewhere.
Whether it was a couple words of encouragement or a financial donation or several, from deep down in my heart, a very sincere thank you goes out to every incredible soul that helped me out along the way - I could not have gotten this far without your help - you all know who you are.
It's as grassroots as it gets, I'm extremely pumped, and I couldn't be more humbled, grateful, and proud of where I am today. Now it's time to go racing.