As per our house rules our starting grid was the reverse order of the finishing positions of the previous race. Which meant Katie the reigning champ and winner of the first race of season two was starting at the back of the grid. Jonathan was in position four, Debbie three, myself in second and Diego was pole position.
I stalled on the starting grid, which Jonathan thought was funny. well until he did exactly the same thing!
Somewhere in the first half of the first lap, Katie manages to move up through the pack into pole position. We don’t know how, but it happens. It has been a mystery to us. Diego wasn’t going to let his lead go that easily, and he managed to hold on to it for at least three quarters of the first lap.
Unusually for me I was taking very little damage on my way round the track. While Katie and Diego were vying for first place, Jonathan and I were trading blows over third. Debbie was happily bringing up the rare, sometimes getting within striking distance of making a move for fourth.
Katie had the lead by the end of the first lap, but she needed a pitstop. Diego was second, and made the call he didn’t need to stop. Jonathan was third, and also in pretty bad shape that he needed to do a pitstop. The pitstops gave Diego and myself the opportunity to gain ground and challenge for the top spot.
We weren’t entirely sure that we had the advance pitstop rules interrupted correctly. They seemed to be a bit confusing. So we will have to go on to bgg and investigate.
In the meantime, lap two was continuing like the first, but tighter.
Diego and Katie were battling for first place. With the advantage clearly with Diego. While Jonathan and I continued our dueling for third.
Somehow I was driving exceedingly well. I was rarely overshooting, my gear selection was working for me. I was making ground on Katie in second! That was helped by her and Diego both skidding on this lap. They had both overshot too many times. As had Jonathan, which meant that I was in remarkable good shape for the second lap, and no pitstop.
In the second third of the track I overtook Katie! I wasn’t going to catch Diego up who was closing in on the finish line. The gap between me and Katie grew. She was having to be extra cautious, overshooting for her could mean instant elimination.
Diego had done what we had thought impossible. He had beaten Katie and taken the win. I crossed the finish line in second. I too had beaten Katie!! This was unheard of in the short history of the league. Katie had suffered her first defeat, and fallen to third place. Jonathan crossed in fourth with Debbie limping over in last place. Katie’s winning streak had come to an abrupt end.
Despite there being a new race winner. Katie is still top of the points table. In the third and final race of the league in the new year Katie will be starting in the middle of the pack. But the pressure will be on for her to reclaim her title, and start a new streak. Will that pressure be too much?