“You stupid fucking c…” Danny screamed into his helmet as Fittzy seemingly made a deliberate move to push his car toward the fence.
Despite being in a practice session and more than likely not going out to a live TV audience Danny had been able to stop himself from dropping the C-bomb. If the incident did make it to the television screens it would be a delayed telecast and the station would be able to bleep the words out. However dropping the C-bomb even when they could be bleeped out was not something the censors took lightly and with Danny’s swearing being an issue the previous race dropping and F and C bomb in the one sentence would really see him copping the wrath of then censors.
Under brakes the car was always easy to set off balance whether it was hitting a kerb too hard, hitting another car or even brushing a tyre wall, under brakes with the car’s centre of gravity shifting the potential for a mistake that could not be corrected was increased. As Danny swerved his car to the right to avoid the rear of Fittzy’s car, which was where it shouldn’t be, the car lurched and the front right wheel locked. Danny’s car was still moving faster than Fittzy’s and he had the potential to actually pass him if he could avoid the wall.
As the front tyre locked up and began skidding on the tarmac Danny wrestled to keep the steering wheel straight. As a professional driver he knew exactly how to handle a situation where the car was under locked brakes and potentially out of his control, but that didn’t mean he could save it every time.
Danny had managed to slow the car down below sixty kilometres per hour, but he wasn’t watching the speedo at the time, he was too busy fighting the car to keep it off the wall. Every millimetre Danny had managed to move his car to the right and off the racing line Fittzy had managed to do the same, not only had he seemingly pushed Danny towards the wall he wasn’t backing off.
There was mere millimetres between the two cars and as Danny’s slightly faster car, which had stopped skidding and was back under his control, came up level with Fittzy’s the two rear vision mirrors on the front doors touched. The connection wasn’t much but it was enough to make Danny’s passenger side mirror fold back toward the door and Fittzy’s drivers side mirror fold forward and snap off.
As the two cars entered the corner, nearly one hundred kilometres slower than race pace Danny’s car was still moving to the right towards the wall. If he braked hard again he would skid and hit the wall for sure. If he braked lightly and tried to let Fittzy drive out of the corner ahead of him there was a good chance that the rear of Fittzy’s car would clip Danny’s front left corner and drive him into the wall. His best option was to try and increase his speed and drive out of the corner ahead of Fittzy.
It was a split second decision and one he hoped Fittzy would not expect him to do but it was still not without risk. Danny pushed his right foot flat to the floor, the slick rear tyres spun and the car shot forward and inched ahead of Fittzy. Both car’s turned into the corner hard, neither were on the racing line and both could easily be headed for disaster.
As the nose of Danny’s car inched ahead of Fittzy’s it was clear that he’d beaten Fittzy to the punch and was going to accelerate away from him. By the time Danny’s front door was level with the front of the car beside him he knew Fittzy had given up whatever stupid game he was playing, but he also knew it was too late to avoid a collision.
It was only a fraction if a second between the two hits, so fast Danny could not tell which one came first. As the front corner of Fittzy’s car kissed the rear left corner of Danny’s the front right kissed the wall. Neither impact was drastically hard but Danny’s paint was left on both items.
In a small saving grace Fittzy finally pulled left and away from Danny’s car allowing him the chance to keep the car from kissing the wall for a second time. Danny was already pulling away but immediately he could feel that damage had been done.
Danny spent the remaining portion of the lap on the radio to the pit crew. While the crew reported no major damage or problems which was a good thing Danny himself was able to report a flat spotted tyre which had been caused by the locking brake. A flat spotted tyre was able to be driven on but at high speeds the vibration and noise was too much for the driver to cope with.
However the more pressing issue that Danny was able to report was the bent steering arm which had been a result of the front corner kissing the fence. The control arm was one such item that was made to fail in such an accident, it was cheap, relatively easy to replace and could be driven with when bent. But most of all it was a part that often when bending saved other parts from breaking as well. Like the tyre it just wasn’t comfortable to drive with.
Danny knew his session was over and pulled the car into the pit garage, he just hoped that there was no other damage he couldn’t feel and that the team could get things fixed and back on the track for the afternoon start.
Twenty minutes later, after a team debrief and chat about the car Danny was walking out to the transporter where he planned to have a rest and something to eat. He could see Tracy standing at the transporter waiting for him, what he didn’t see was Fittzy’s wandering up from the pits on his left hand side.
“What sort of a fucking move do you call that you fucking dipshit!” Fittzy said in a loud demanding voice.
“Danny!” Tracey called as she saw Fittzy’s closed fist swinging towards Danny’s head.
Previous Racing Story here.