Working on the car

Today marks the first day of scrutineering, where the cars are examined by judges and tested to meet certain requirements. We headed to the garage at Texas Motor Speedway and quickly set up our tools after an hour of idling in line, on Ozone Day I might add, kicking a grasshopper into a black widow spider’s web in the process.

Our first test involved qualifying the drivers by doing a slalom around pions, a test of both driver competence and Mary Ann’s functionality. Also included was proving that the drivers could leave the lady and turn everything off in 15 seconds. Aside from one pion and a box of baking soda achieving lift-off on one run, everything went smoothly and all four drivers passed.

Our next test was the endurance lap, a test of both Mary Ann’s versatility to complete a lap, as well as the support crew’s reaction time. DON’T TOUCH THE WHITE WALL!!! We practiced both loading and unloading protocols in the pit lane after Rotten Hotdog finished a lap. The judges found our performance pleasurable and gave us the all-clear.

The third trial was the break test, where Mary Ann was tasked to accelerate to 20 mph and stop in 2 seconds. Although the first run missed the requirements, the second run earned us the confirmation that Sol Tide passed the Brake Test.

Rolling out the car

Altercations began with the General and Electrical Inspection, where certain criteria were not met, and the Purple Parade Float started to get pissy. An hour-long setback happened due to an unfortunate dislocation of the suspension. After an afternoon spent fine-tuning the wiring and fixing the suspensions, we left off in favor of completing the rest tomorrow. We’re expecting a bright and sunny second scrutineering day tomorrow.

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