Two for the Road is a hangout for mystery writers Tammy Kaehler and Simon Wood to chat, reminisce, gossip, speculate and argue about all things motorsport.

Monday, March 19, 2012

A Very Long Race

by Tammy

I spent most of Saturday glued to my computer screen, watching the 12 Hours of Sebring streaming on Which was really a very long time to do anything! I also had Twitter open (via the TweetDeck plugin for the Chrome browser, which I highly recommend), and what I found interesting was that at times I was following the action more via the Twitter feed than the video and audio.

The story of the race, and of the forthcoming ALMS season no doubt, was the GT field. As so many times in recent years, this race too came down to a last lap battle and a couple last-turn passes that rearranged the top three finishers in the last seconds.

In no particular order, here's what I found interesting from the 12 hour event and broadcast:
  • The reported 25 people working in race control to mange 63 cars starting across six classes and two championships, each with their own set of rules.
  • The ALMS streaming video options, which included eight in-car cameras and a snoop-cam on the announcers calling the race (John Hindhaugh and Jeremy Shaw).
  • Marino Franchitti as a guest of the announcers, giving amazing insight into the race, cars, and drivers, as well as a good book recommendation (Martin Krumm's book on racecraft).
  • I still don't like the old Risi Ferrari drivers ... Gimmi Bruni (some 18 laps down) was the guy who caused the last-lap kerfuffle in the GT class.
  • It really sucks when a car gets wrecked in the last turn before taking the green flag. The poor Flying Lizard #45....
  • Jordan Taylor will be a full-time Corvette Racing driver soon, maybe next year.
  • You can never anticipate what will go wrong ... the fueling inlet (the plug that the fueling hose fits into) on the prototype sponsored by Muscle Milk broke in the last half hour of the race. For some minutes, the team (and officials) weren't sure if they'd be allowed to fix it in order to put fuel in the car to finish the race.
  • 12 hours is a very, very long time to keep equipment running, especially on a track as rough as Sebring.
What did you find memorable?

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