May 29, 2010
We only found out about the derby in mid-April when the owner of John's Foods in Soap Lake approached Randy about building a car for them to sponsor in the race. This is the first time the derby has been done in this area so everything was brand new to most everyone involved in the planning. Randy agreed, so Grace and Grampa set to work thinking about their car design and what they wanted to do for their derby entry. Grace decided almost right away that her car would be called the XL-37. Who knows where that came from, but we all loved it, of course.
Gracie's Pit Crew: Pat (dad), Randy (grampa) and the coolest guy ever, Ty. He was so good with Grace when she freaked about going down the ramp the first time and talked her down after the crash. We had never met him before race day and it wasn't like he was "assigned" to our team or anything. He and Grace just seemed to click and made an awesome team. Just a really neat guy!
Taking a 'pig in a blanket' break between races.
Grace and Hannah, Ty's daughter. Is this the cutest thing? :) They had never met before race day.Grace and Pat, proud dad
Grace and her builder, Grampa Randy
Each trophy winner posed with their car for newspaper photos. I can't wait to see the article and put it in Grace's scrapbook!
Cool (G)race Stats
* this was Gracie's first race ever
* she had no time for even one practice run before race day
* she was the youngest driver there
* she was the first to run the course and use the ramp
* she was the first to qualify
* she was the first to crash (very minor and not the fault of the car or driver – when the crew put weights in, they placed them in the way of the cables so she wasn't able to steer)
* she traveled the farthest of all the racers to participate in the derby
* she beat every other car out there--experienced cars and drivers who've done this many times before, mind you! (and boy, was grampa pleased about that!!!)
* she loved that she, a girl scout, beat every other car in a boy scout sponsored event
* at one point during the day, due to an error in the line up, she raced an experienced driver from an older division and beat them too! When she found out the girl she beat was 15, she was super stoked!
More sights from race day