racing was a mixed-bag of fun and disappointment, but at least
we didn't conduct a re-enactment of the Titanic. The day started
with an inspection and registration of our Jeeps. Having never
done this before, Toby, Ethan, Shawn were excited but nervous
about the event. Our main concern was falling through the ice.
At registration, officials were asked whether anyone has ever
fallen through. Their response was a resounding "Yes."
Needless to say, this information did not calm the contestants'
nerves, but were reassured that the 15 inches of ice would support
our treasured Jeeps.
With a couple
of hours before starting time, we were able to test our vehicles
on the ice. Toby's and Shawn's faired much better in testing than
Ethan's, due mainly to our large tire size. Poor Ethan spun out
of control while Toby yelled, "No Ethan, THIS way!"
racing began, Mike Pritt and his family showed up to lend their
support. We had many discussions on how low to take the air pressure
in the tires, and on whether or not to run in 4 Lo. The decision
was mixed on the tire pressure, but everyone agreed that 4 Lo
was a necessity.
went first. With cheers from his fellow CFSJA members, he started
off around the course. It was a surprisingly slow trek and difficult
to maintain control. Keeping the vehicle within the track cones
turned out to be a grueling process for this first-timer. Rounding
the last turn, he noticed that he was behind, and gunned it to
make up the length. This proved futile because the tires spun
so fast that traction was impossible.
1: Don't "floor it" on ice.
was the next to race. With a honk and a wave, he was off. He was
fairing much better than Toby, and led the race most of the way.
Tragically, he went to the wrong side of the cones at the finish
line, which he reached well ahead of his competitor, and was disqualified
from his race. From now on Shawn will be known as "Black
2: Always finish on the outside.
was finally Ethan's turn when Adam and James showed up to add
their support. With a mighty blast of a train whistle, he began
his run -- the last hope for the CFSJA. Ethan had very good control
compared to practice, but in the end, lost by about a car length.
3: Mud tires are NOT good on ice.
with our losses we kept our shiny sides up and our wheels out
of the water. We retreated to the safety of the shoreline, and
thanks to "Go Go Gadget" Ethan and his trusty air compressor,
aired our tires back up. We headed for the local Dairy King (yes,
Dairy King), posed for the mandatory event of drivers in front
of their rigs, and talked about the days events over a bite to
The ice racers
were a very entertaining event that we can all recommend to anyone.
With the knowledge that we now have, the CFSJA will be a force
to reckon with at next year's races.