Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: The scorched Desert
Pre-Race news and notes:
Prior to opening the season we have two sponsorship slots filled in each category. For Race bonus Golden Tiger Bank will pay us $200,000 if we select them as our race day sponsor and finish 13th or better. We have 9 races left with them. For fixed payment sponsors Sheikh Airways has 4 races left on their deal with us and pay us $85,000 per race. I have one offer pending for a 10 race bonus deal with Chiffre, which will pay $800,000 for 5th or better. I accept as we should be able to cash this in a couple times by season’s end.
Social media is mixed in regards to fans approval to my taking over of the team, with many remaining skeptical that my ability as a driver translates.
I grant an interview to World Sports Network and they ask me what my goal is for the team, which is to finish better than 8th. They also try and stir a driver controversy and I defray it letting them know I am blessed to have two good drivers (lying because I know Rodgers is an also ran). Finally they want to know how I feel my skills as a driver will translate to the management side. I answer that I feel my knowledge will serve me well.
Just prior to leaving for the race I get two offers for a second fixed payment sponsor slot, one is a $1,500,000 upfront payment with no per race payment for 11 races from Bango BBQ, the second through Carne Blanca is $200,000 up front and $200,000 per race for 10 races, which is 700K better overall, so we welcome Carne to the family.
First thing up is I order a new brake design the will give me +10 deceleration and +10 reliability, which is big early on. Next up I assign Stephanie to work on reliability for suspension and engines for both drivers and Jonny to improve performance on just one set of brakes. These tasks will be done 32 and 28 days AFTER our first race respectively.
Brakes are done and they go to El Sadat and I order work to begin next on a gear box. I have two options to go outside of the rules, but play it safe and elect the legal option, +25 acceleration. I am now $600,000 in the hole.
Race #1 : Black Sea GP - Track F
Forecast: Clear 66 degrees
Track qualities: Tire wear high, fuel burn low
Crucial attributes: Top speed, acceleration, high speed corners
Race Day bonus sponsor: Golden Tiger (13th or better = $200,000)
Testing results (Downforce, Handling, Speed)
El Sadat – Great, Excellent, Excellent
Rodgers – Excellent, Great, Great
*Young will always test Rodgers car for him
Very happy with testing results and for knowledge I add intermediate tires and race trim to El Sadat, both +5 performance and race trim +5 and Lightfooted supersoft tires (slows tire wear on super soft tires) to Rodgers.
Over 30 laps I want to pit twice and a tank of fuel gives me 12 laps at normal speed, so I cut back to 10 laps for the first fueling, knowing I am going to push it and will need close to the full 12 for the 1st and 2nd cycles. El Sadat is starting in 7th spot and Rodgers 20th, WTF!! Things start well enough, then Rodgers collides with Boa Tang on lap 2 and fucks up the front wing, so he needs to pit. That basically ruins my strategy for him, thanks Alex. Meanwhile lap 3 is bad for El Sadat and he falls to 11th. Several cars pit on lap 5 and it allows El Sadat, who had fallen to 13th by now, to climb into 8th. I let off on driving style and engine mode to save on tire wear and gas and will pit him on lap 9 and go to a harder tire for a long mid race run. Coming to the end of lap 7, Marchetta crashes, so I elect to bring both drivers in then to get full fuel and harder tires while the safety car is out. I also have El Sadat’s brakes tweaked. We are in 8th and 17th at this point.
The yellow is off on lap 11 and El Sadat jumps into 7th place, with Rodgers capturing 16th off the restart. Over the next 5 laps nothing of note happens, with El Sadat moving into 6th due to a pit stop, though he sets a personal best lap of 1:26.08 on lap 16, while Rodgers is performing fairly well given his start and has climbed to 15th, where he is battling with Evans, who I gather he hates based on radio messages. Rodgers has to pit on lap 19 due to tire wear and I am able to milk El Sadat’s fuel to get to 20, where he now sits in 3rd place, but I forget to give him the pit order!! Son of a bitch!!! He is on fumes and has dropped to 17th by the time he coasts into the pits and it is all on me! On lap 25 Rodgers, now in 15th starts to lose his gear box, I am just going to try and let him finish, while El Sadat sits in 18th place, despite running a good race, due to my screw up. Aurelie Dembeli retires, which bumps Rodgers to 14th and El Sadat to 16th on lap 28. Rodgers is able to jump to 11th when Claudia Dreyfuss and Amanda Cavalcanti run out of fuel on the last lap, which secures our bonus.
1st – Tanvir Jha (Garuda Racing) 47:45.91
2nd – Jean-Francois Beauchamp (Garuda Racing) + 5.92
3rd – Sergio Arbeloa (Eastport Motorsport) + 27.61
11th – Alex Rodgers +94.08 (10 points)
15th – Mustafa El Sadat +1 lap (6 points)
Should have had a El Sadat in the top 5 if I hadn’t screwed the pooch on that pit stop, lesson learned. We have 16 points as a team after one race, which puts us in 7th overall. Gruda and Eastport are the class of the league and they will fight for 1st. I just want to meet my goals, finish 7th of higher so I can start the rebuilding process. Twitter is kind to us overall after the race, with one female fan expressing her love for our drivers and another happy we finished ahead of ZRT racing, who he F’ing hates! LOL