As a lead-up to that day, I thought I'd revisit the experiences I had doing research for the book—namely, what I learned while I embedded with a race team for the 24 Hours of Daytona 2013.
At the end of 2012, I'd started writing Avoidable Contact, only it didn't have that title yet. It was a story I'd plotted out and set at the 24-hour race, but I wasn't yet comfortable with the idea of writing it ... because I knew I needed an insider's look at the event. That's when I contacted my good friends at The Racer's Group, who I know from my first year involved in racing, and asked for a favor.
Kevin Buckler, the team owner, and Bob Dickinson, my former marketing/communications contact at the ALMS and current TRG COO, came through for me. "Sure," they said. "Happy to have you embed with the team. Come on out!" They hooked me up with a credential, and I prepared to take a lot of notes (and plug their team whenever possible!).
I wrote eight blog posts that weekend, and took dozens and dozens of pages of notes. I'll spare you the notes, but I'm reprising the blog entries (they're all short) to give you a flavor of the research experience that went into my new book. Here are the first two:
And here are two panoramas, one looking back at the pits from the front straight and the other looking at the front straight and the stands, all during pre-race ceremonies ... my experience there was peaceful and sunny, unlike Kate's!
More posts and tidbits to come soon....