DC in New Jersey: What we do best

WHAT WE DO BEST This parent considers himself very fortunate to have two collegiate scholarship-winning, golf-playing daughters who - one or the other - all but won just about every junior tournament in which they competed. Still, every now...


WHAT WE DO BEST

This parent considers himself very fortunate to have two collegiate scholarship-winning, golf-playing daughters who - one or the other - all but won just about every junior tournament in which they competed.

Still, every now and again, each would finish somewhere other than first and, when such occurred, weren't happy campers.

Yet, they beat the odds more frequently than they did not - though such has changed in college's "bigger-fish pond," of course.

Now, though they still play well relative to most others in the college game, winning is a little less frequent.

Attempting to bolster sometimes downcast past spirits, I'd point out that professional baseball players in "The Bigs" annually are paid millions of dollars for getting hits in just one of three appearances at the plate, or that pitchers likewise get healthy sums for winning about half or fewer of games in which they pitch.

One time - and sticking together like many siblings - one asked how many times a plumber gets away with reversing hot and cold water or if an electrician can walk after dropping an improperly grounded line.

Okay, you win some; you lose some.

The point is, though, if anything, we humans inescapably are quite good at making mistakes - even if we ultimately do make hot-water pass through the proper spigot.

Indeed, such reality likely underlies the biblical rational about the blameless "casting the first stone."

Unfortunately, errors can cost more than anyone might've considered and, in racing, that "cost" can result in the ultimate: loss of life. Indeed, far too many names on the roll call of "racing's greatest" died long before they could become even greater.

To many in the Rolex Series' New Jersey Motorsports Park paddock, Scott Pruett on Thursday needlessly came way too close in joining those "greats" no longer with us when he smashed into the blunt end of a metal railing that ran the length of pit road along the track's front straight.

It "ran" (past tense) because a laudable overnight (Thursday-into-Friday) effort changed it as NJMP officials and workers extended that railing well into Turn 12 - the track's last turn before the pit straight.

Sinking the necessary vertical supports into the pavement and securing horizontal bracing to it, the team built a 200-ft. addition, give or take.

On Friday, the finger-pointing on the once-shorter rail nonetheless raged in earnest while consternation over vision-obscuring dust clouds (in the description of which there is no exaggeration) continued.

So, who's to blame for the "unsafe conditions?"

In what this reporter has been able to thus far piece together, a bona fide ACCUS-appointed, FIA representative recently inspected and approved the facility as fit for racing.

In short: it ain't over, as yet, for many questions remain.

MEMO ROJAS PRACTICES

Presuming an absent-from-the-track Scott Pruett to be undertaking some quiet time Friday, Chip Ganassi Racing con Felix (y Jose) Sabates' No. 01 TELMEX Lexus-Riley co-driver Memo Rojas nonetheless got in some practice laps.

Sacrificing seat time at an unfamiliar track in favor of Rojas picking up some were Bill Lester and Shane Lewis, whose No. 3 Southard Motorsports' Lexus-Riley was the surrogate used by Rojas as the Ganassi team worked feverishly back in its Indianapolis shop readying a backup for Sunday's race.

"It's going to be close," Rojas said Friday. "We might not even make Sunday's pre-race warm-up."

It's been quite a season for Rojas, who with Pruett stands on the verge of winning the 2008 Daytona Prototype driving title.

"I'm third on the most-wins list" for Mexican-born drivers, Rojas proudly noted, behind the late Pedro Rodriguez and a still-competing Adrian Fernandez.

"It is a great honor."

And to think, two seasons ago Rojas hadn't raced anything - save, possibly, Mexico City's rush-hour traffic - in the previous two years.

Later.
    DC Williams, exclusively for Motorsport.com

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About this article
Series General , Grand-Am
Drivers Shane Lewis , Scott Pruett , Pedro Rodriguez , Memo Rojas , Bill Lester , Chip Ganassi
Teams Williams , Chip Ganassi Racing