Archive for November, 2007

How motor racing changed my life

Posted in motor racing with tags on November 29, 2007 by vastine

My eyes were first introduced to the world of motor racing when I was in high school. Dad gave me a Yamaha motorbike for my 16th birthday. It was a shiny red big bike with clean wheels, it smelled like paint, it was perfect.

I have been discreetly asking my dad to buy me a motorbike 3 months before my birthday. We used to watch motor races on tv and I would make little hints. Thought he was too naive to notice because he would say that I was too young or something. But came my 16th birthday, it was there, in the garage, with a card that said, for you son, hope you’re happy, dad.

It was the best gift I received as of yet.

Baby steps

I immediately rode it, I already know how to since I know how to ride a bicycle. But the first try gave me a burn in my ankle, and a twisted pinkie. The changes in my life started from there.

Stepping out of my shell

As a kid, I was a recluse. I didn’t have many friends, most of the time, I was just at home, reading the encyclopedia. Yes, I read that, cover to cover like it was a bestselling novel at the New York Times. My playmates were my siblings and cousins. Most of the time I was with adults, older men in the construction sites my dad owns. So, when I got the motor cycle, I gained friends outside my family tree.

I became a member of a clandestine motor racing group 4 months after I had my first motor cycle. People began to see me as a not-so bad guy. They now nod at me whenever I get to cross paths with them. I was not the “it” guy in school, but I was definitely part of a group.

As I grew older and went to college, I became more than a motor racing enthusiast, I became a follower of the sport. I worshipped Brands Hatch, I dreamt to join the big leagues and not pursue a college degree. I use to navigate the University with my red, big and shiny motorcycle. I used to sneak every night and go motor racing at my dad’s construction site, which was really stupid of me back then.

Life lost

But then, something major happened. My friend died at mid-afternoon motor racing across town. He raced to forget a girl who dumped him. I was just behind him. I saw everything. I saw how his motorcycle exploded. How he struggled to keep his eyes open. His body was burnt beyond recognition. His ashes were the only thing that went to home to his family in the Philippines.

After that, I became more cautious when I go motor racing. I became more aware of the risks of motor racing. But I still sneak out a few times, like once a month. I now realize that I should go motor racing for the right reasons. And the right reason is because of the passion, not of rebellion or to prove something. But because I love the speed. Nothing more, nothing less.


Why I love to race when it rains

Posted in car racing, race with tags , , on November 27, 2007 by vastine

When it rains, it pours. And I love it when it pours, especially when I’m behind the wheel. Though most people stay indoors or wait for the rain to stop before driving, I prefer to make a run for it. I prefer to race when the the road’s slippery.

A few months back, when my car was still in good shape, I was coming home from a 26-hour shift from the hospital at around 9 pm. Then, my racing pal called me up and informed me of a race downtown. Though I was very tired, I immediately made a U-turn and went to the place. The rain was pouring so hard that only a few, in that case, 5 of us only showed up. There was no prize, no chicks, just us 5 guys being racy. My speed was unimaginable. The 9 inches of rain blocked my view while I was in the race and I crashed into a dumpster but finished second in the race. I got home at 6 in the morning. I slept at the car because my legs and hands felt numb, my head was swirling. Prior meal was around 5 pm the afternoon before the race. My dad fumed with anger when he saw me just arriving while he was about to go to the dining room for breakfast. He knew that I raced. And he hates when I race. Didn’t speak to me for 2 days.

So, with these..Don’t know how to describe them, why do I still race when it rains? I race for three things and three things only:

  1. I long for the rush of blood in my veins
  2. I love cars
  3. I feel good

I guess these maybe generic reasons to race. But the passion is so strong I can’t resist it. It’s like in my blood, in my nerves. When I race, I feel fulfilled. And I think, that at the end of the day, we all seek fulfillment, even in little ways, and I intend to fulfill something every day.

Drag racing won’t necessarily take you six feet under

Posted in drag racing with tags on November 23, 2007 by vastine

People commonly perceive drag racing as a deadly sport. Heck, they consider every racing sport as fatal. Not going to blame them, though. We racers can’t go at every nook and cranny of this globe to advocate racing, drag racing to be specific. A racer by heart can only continue to race and race and be alive so the general public can realize that doing drag racing is not an automatic ticket to moving on to the next life.

What I’m trying to say is that every sport can put you in a life and death situation. Just don’t put the blame entirely to drag racing. What one doesn’t know will definitely scare the wits out of them. And one way to take away the stigma is to know the past of drag racing. As they say, a person needs to look behind first in order to move forward, just take a mere LOOK.

Also, you need to be aware of the basic know-hows of the racing world. Fill your mind with the things below to be alive after the race:

  • Explore ways to take care of your prized wheels
  • Know the safety systems
  • Follow driving SOPs, and
  • Select the right tires

I’m not a hypocrite, just to pacify the violent reactors. The death toll in drag racing can’t be just brushed off. What’s important is that you prepare yourself. Death is inevitable. No one can escape this life cycle. You can evade it for some time, but we’ll all face it, be it in drag racing or another situation.

What in the world am I racing for?

Posted in racing with tags on November 20, 2007 by vastine

My dad has always been very apprehensive against my car racing. Been racing since I was in college and the adrenaline rush drives me nuts and yet makes me go faster than my engines can go on. I drive a Honda Civic 2005 when I go car racing and a Yamaha when I go motor racing. But sadly, the brakes are being repaired so I decided to let out my yearning to race through this blog.

I’m really kind of shy to show pictures of my recent races. Well, to tell you the truth, there weren’t much. But rest assured I’ll post pictures of my dream cars..

I said in the first part was, and still is, and forever will be, apprehensive against me racing. Maybe it is every parent’s instinct to protect their children against any harm. But then again, I’m of age, so and even if I was not yet of age back then I started to race. Got into a lot of accidents but then those scratches and burns just made me want to get back and drift outrun my friends.

Haven’t raced for a while and it makes my spirits low. With all the demands at work, really need something to fall back on. Going full speed while racing makes me think less and relieve myself from stress. Hopefully, my car will be fixed, soon.