Its been a while since I’ve written here. So long that I look into what I was doing and what I’m doing now. Like real life, some things have changed, for better and for worse. So to explain what has changed, here it is.
For 2015 iRacing was planning on doing the first ever Pro Endurance Series. This has been something that many have awaited since they introduced driver swaps back in 2014. Like every Pro series, there is a qualifier. Our team prepared for this in the hopes of getting all the entries into what is called the Blancpain GT Series.
The series is a GT3 championship that has the best 40 teams in it. Around 200+ teams tried to qualify for the honor of participating in this championship. we came in with three entries and one of us got in. As for me, well, this is when I started noticing a significant downward spiral with myself.
It was getting harder and harder for me to do a simple race. I was feeling pressured, no by the team, but by myself, to be faster. However, the approach I was taking, definitely not working. Nothing seemed to work mentally speaking, and as a result, my performance was starting to affect not only me personally, but also my teammates and, in a way, my real life.
Because of this, I had to take the very tough decision of stopping my passion: racing, before things got worse. I was in the middle of not only the Blancpain qualifier, but also with a team at NEO. I had to literally let everyone down, for my own sake. Of course, some were ok and some were not ok, but this is life.
As I got out of doing any competitive racing, there was some things that started to happen that involve simracing that, in a way, still got me involved. These new gigs that I have now have given me a newer perspective on how, as we get older, life goes on.
As most of you know by now, I am part of the Race Control crew at NEO. Because of me not racing as much as I used to, I can dedicate more time into this league, not only on race day, but also behind the scenes. I am sure Niel and Egil do appreciate this, and so far they’ve been happy with my contributions.
Recently NEO got 1000 likes on Facebook and to thanks everybody, NEO did a 1000km race with a very different environment to what we usually do. For this race I was also in charge of helping with organizing it. Definitely a different experience than what I’ve been used to, but worth the time. In case you haven’t seen it, here is the race in its entirety, broadcasted by Racespot.
With my experience doing Race Control with NEO, another league was looking for stewards: 2k. This is a different experience compared to NEO, but worth the learning experience. In essence, 2k has four championships: the very popular Skip Barber (both road and oval), Formula Renault 2.0 and GT3. The race are also broadcast by Racespot.
Now, wait a second. Why mention Racespot on this post. Free promotion? Well, this is the other major change that has happened. By accident in October one of the co-founders of Racespot posted on Facebook a post about “needing some extra commentators for a broadcast”. Unfortunately he deleted the post later, but not before I got to see it and not forget about it.
I sent him a PM, to which he was more than grateful to answer. I got invited to a race with them to see how I could do. Note that during my career I’ve been interviewed by them many times, whether post race or during a race at NEO, so I’ve had some interaction with them before. This time, totally different. I was part of the team, so image and projection was important.
For my first race I was a color commentator. I had some nerves as I tend to swear from time to time and the last thing I wanted to do was to do that live and make Racespot look bad. Fortunately all went well and I was invited to the rest of the championship. By the way, if you are wondering which championship this was, it was the Gathering of Tweakers Endurance Series, which partners with NEO to bring the best endurance series during the winter (oh God, lame promotion LOL).
The good news is that I am now part of the Racespot team and part of the team that broadcasts the iRacing VLN Endurance Series, essentially following the schedule of the real life VLN championship.
As for my real life, I got my professional engineer license, which was a great deal. this opens my opportunities long term, which is great. For now, I will let the experiences that I am having in the simracing world help me improve in my real life to make me a better engineer and a better person.