Randy's European Adventure From the Isle of Capri off the coast of Italy, Randy writes to update family, friends and fans on an amazing two weeks overseas: Last weekend started with a last-minute trip to the former Formula 1 circuit Estoril,...
Randy's European Adventure
From the Isle of Capri off the coast of Italy, Randy writes to update family, friends and fans on an amazing two weeks overseas:
Last weekend started with a last-minute trip to the former Formula 1 circuit Estoril, outside Lisbon, Portugal, to film a TV show on Speed Channel called "Test Drive". The host is racer Tommy Kendall, and Randy has, in fact, done another episode back in 2003 with the Audi RS6. This time the subject was the all-new 2011 300-horse Volvo S60. Yes, I want one. No, they are not going to give me one. Or maybe...? It was car-guy fun driving the Volvos at speed on track, play-racing with Kendall, on camera. The episode will air in October.
From Portugal, Randy then joined David MacNeil and family for a private cruise on an eighty-foot Azimut yacht (the "4FUN") along the West coast of Italy, catching up with them after rental car, plane, bus, train, and cab in quaint, ancient, Portofino. Three sun-drenched days later, Cooper MacNeil and Randy left Rome for Germany and joined great friend Mark White to race the longest, most treacherous, and greatest road course on earth, the Nurburgring. This is the realization of a long-held dream for Randy. The "Green Hell", as the track is known colloquially, dates from the thirties and is the most challenging road course on earth, with eighteen miles of ultra-fast, narrow, twisting, dangerous driving heaven. This German series is called the VLN, and the race was six hours of endurance competition, 180 cars entered (!), and sixteen in our V5 class. We drove an E36 BMW M3, about 300 HP and 155 mph, and had a terrific experience, picking up forty positions overall during the event, and finishing seventh in class after a faultless and reliable drive. No car problems at all. The M3 was well prepped by the Green Hell Racing team of Darius Drzensla, located right there in Nurburg.
Early the next morning, Cooper and Randy were back on a plane to Naples, Italy, for another couple days on the yacht, now docked on the Island of Capri. Talk about your "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous". Randy will return straight to Ohio just in time for the World Challenge GT doubleheader at the Mid-Ohio circuit. Yes, another two-race weekend, races Saturday and Sunday, to be shown on the Versus TV channel August 28 from 4:30 - 6:00 PM. Though leading the points and coming off a victory at the Toronto GP (re-airs August 6 at 4:00 AM on Versus), Randy's K-PAX Volvo S60 gets another 50 pounds of rewards weight, bringing the total to 150. The design of this system is to make it hard for the same driver to win every time, improving the competition and the show, because it is show business, Friends. It will be more difficult, and we expect strong competition at Mid-O. Our Volvos are required to weigh about 500 pounds more than the Porsches, for instance, an indicator of just how very good the K-PAX Volvo team is. With five races to go, the championship depends on reliability at this point, even more than wins.
"In the last two weeks, I have been to Portugal, on a yacht with a French and Spanish-speaking crew to Italy, up to Germany and back to Italy with my American friends. My head is spinning with five languages! Therefore, I must say obrigado, merci, gracias, grazie, danke, and thank you very much to my WeatherTech floor mats friend David MacNeil and his family; Kim, Cooper, Rod, and Devon, for the amazing gift of including me in their private luxury cruise of the Italian coast. I have been spoiled rotten by the wonderful ship's crew. It will be quite a change to once again have to rise from my seat for my own glass of water, haha."
Thanks for following, friends!