Through the Eyes of Race Car Driver “Steven Steck”
It’s 95*, no water in sight, and I’m standing around in the desert, doing nothing.
No tools, no tires, no timer, no clue.
What am I doing here?
Two weeks prior, Max and I had a gentlemen’s bet; who would get the fastest lap, who could push the limit further in the dark, who would go hard or go….well you get the point. That day started as many do, with a kind smile from Touda and Luella, only this time I had a message at ‘the reception desk’:
Max is looking for you. Stop
He wants to race. Stop
He wants to beat you. Stop
The result of that is why I’m here now, with a beer in hand, not driving, weird…..
To say I won would be adequate. Being the quick study that he is, Max has asked me to come along and shed some light as to how. So here I am, at my most sacred place, my refuge from the cold harsh light of reality, NOT doing what I love.
Passenger, what is that? Is that why we have that extra seat, I thought it was some sort of weight distribution strategy?
I’m a driver. Stop
I wanna go fast. Stop
It’s all about me. Stop
And yet, somehow here is where I have developed my new friends. Parking lots are pit areas, freeways are ribbons of asphalt to nowhere, revving is acceptable (and diagnostic), and ‘the gang’ is now ‘the track pack’. Dreams are made and shattered over such trivial things that hold so much meaning to us in the moment.
So you went 1.5 seconds faster? Is that good?
You missed your goal by 0.2? What’s the big deal?
Until you’ve been there and felt that electric surge up your spine from setting a new personal best…..it’s almost indescribable. And here I am helping a friend, to push it that much more, change his perspective just a bit, redefine his limits.
Stay in it, stay in it, don’t lift yet, line up to the left….
OK now threshold brake ¾’s of the way up, find your marker….
Turn the nose down, gas it, gas it!
Let the chassis tell you how close you are to the edge, ride that limit……
I know he’s in the zone. He can’t even summon the will to respond, face glistening with perspiration…..surely he risks certain death if he diverts any attention at all to such a simple task as conversation. But who needs words in a moment like that. I know what he’s feeling. I miss it and crave it, like the gentle touch of an old lover. The margin between perfection and destruction can’t be measured by words, you need to feel it.
Back at work on Monday, somehow less disappointed than I would have thought. It was not quite so tragic, to be so close and not touch the sun. There is something to be gained by helping others, coming out of my bunker.
Antonio is crossing the hall, making sure I see him;
Steve, I took your advice, I went to a track day at Willow Springs this past week.
Yeah man, it was awesome! The car can really handle, I started off the day by…..
Ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to welcome another convert……
Written by Steven Steck #motolyric #thisiscarculture #dontletoff #extremespeedtrackevents