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What checker? This time I clearly heard, "Last lap!" One more chance! I mounted my second, final attempt. I was more aggressive this time but I still wasn't making any progress and Rob wasn't making any mistakes. My last chance would be the turns leading onto the front straight. I could usually gain on him there.

My plan was working as I had a better bite out of the turn that leads to the front straight I dove inside of Rob. He pinched me into the grass and my left wheels went into the soft dirt. Coming out of the soft dirt, accelerator pressed to the floor, I hit the hard curb. The left side of the car jumped into the air. The car was on two wheels for a while before it slammed softly down. Still on the throttle, I followed Rob across the finish line. His margin of victory was just under 0.6 seconds. It was quite a show.

So Rob took the National win, but I re-set the track record at 1:50.662, a mere 0.067 seconds faster than Rob's fastest lap but almost 1.5 seconds faster than the day before! Just before we left the track someone would overhear part of a phone conversation that referred to "the fastest Sentras from the East" Though tempted, it would be a little bold to put that on the cars.

I spent the next few days kicking myself for not trying to pass Rob at one or another turns but I came to peace with it after a while. Rob is a more experienced racer. We can both qualify fast, but he can generally out-race me. Racing against him, however, is the best school I could possibly take. And it makes for great hard-fought battles.

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