Mike Poupart Motorsports

130 Veterans Boulevard, Suite E              Kenner, Louisiana  70062   USA
Phone: 504-472-0400                     E-mail: mpmotorworks@bellsouth.net

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2005 Grand Bayou Road Race Series - Event #4

October 15, 2005

By:  Mike Poupart

    It's been along time since we have written to this page.  We had our summer break from the Grand Bayou Series and did not travel to any outside races this year, something we like to do just to keep us on our toes.  Little things about everyday life just seemed to get in our way.

    As everyone knows life got in the way, in a big way, on August 29th. Hurricane Katrina came roaring through southeast Louisiana.  We were VERY blessed in that our home, our families and our business were all spared.  Some times we feel guilty telling people how well we came through the storm.  This catastrophe was followed two weeks later by Hurricane Rita making it's way through southwest Louisiana.  This left the entire southern part of Louisiana, southern Mississippi and southeast Texas in a big mess.

    Racing was not a high priority on anyone's list and the October 1st date was postponed indefinitely. Suprisingly, some things came together pretty fast and, for the people who could, a needed a break from the stress of storm recovery developed and the race date was reassigned to October 15th.  It must have been a well needed distraction as the turnout was better that we expected.

    Now back to the opening sentence from the last article.  "A day racing is always better than. . ." no matter what the outcome.  Let me rethink that.

    Between Bowtie Automotive being very busy and taking advantage of make extra money with storm recovery jobs, I had been working 18 hour days.  Patty's job had been relocated and she was working out of town in Alexandria, LA.  My commitment to go racing was weak and made at the last minute. Our regular devotion to our race effort made this an OK thing to do because the race car and trailer is always prepared and ready.

     Now to race day.  Although we had a good sized field in our race due to the three combined classes that run during our race, it would be a shoot-out in Super Production between just two of us.  John Crosby was back in his GT-3 Porsche, and as I have said, a real threat.  The morning practice session was uneventful, just some good clean laps to settle down and forget the stress.  The qualifying session on the other hand was blunt.  I was on the second best old tires we had left, saving the best old tires for the race, and all I could do was a lap at 1.17.920.  Crosby on the other hand laid down a blistering 1.15.033, a new record for the GBRS Super Production class.  Being almost two seconds a lap slower, this was going to be a long race.

Patty Poupart Photo

    Twelve cars took the green flag for our race. Starting on the outside of the front row, my plan was to use the torque of the Viper and get the jump on Crosby's Porsche, take the lead and make the Viper very wide for as long as I could.  That plan went away by the second turn.  Now it was just follow the leader as I watched as the Porsche moved away about a car length a lap.  There was nothing I could do about it except wait for traffic and hope I got the breaks and Crosby didn't.  About three laps from the end of the race, while passing one of the Corvettes in the GTO class, I ran out of room in the brake zone for Turn 1 and stuffed the nose of the Viper into the back of another GTO Corvette.  The Corvette continued on and I did a complete 360 degree spin inside the concrete walls. Luckily, I did not touch them.  I still managed a second place finish, due to only the two cars entered in Super Production, but finished eighth overall.

    "A day racing is always better than. . ." no matter what the outcome.  Yes it is!  This is part of racing, not the part you want to experience, but part of racing.  The Viper received only minor damage to the front bumper cover and will be quickly repaired in time for the next race.

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