It's been a while since my last update. Life happens and I have been focusing quite a bit of time and energy on non racing things. But it's not like I haven't been to the track either. Last year I heard about the Skip Barber IndyCar Academy. I was skeptical at first wondering what the catch was. A free entry to a shootout where the winner would win a free ride worth $60,000?? I've been writing for four and a half years on this very blog about how these things don't happen! But I decided the chance was too good to turn up and I entered the program, which required doing the 3 day skip barber racing school. I went in pretty unprepared, not having driven a race car in over a year, and not totally focused. I wasn't that happy with my performance at the 3 day school, but I was invited back for the shootout. I was still skeptical but finally decided I needed to commit to this and give it my all. I knew this was probably my best and likely my last opportunity to make it "legitimately" (I could write a whole book now on what that means and why it doesn't really make sense) into higher levels of racing. I practiced on iRacing seriously, working not just on fast laps but practicing real world technique. I studied video and more than anything, I mentally prepared.

When the shootout came I proved that the preparation paid off. After being pretty disappointed in my car racing endeavors over the past few years, I did well in the shootout. I was in the top 3 of my group for every timed session, I had no penalty points, I turned legitimately fast laps. I was ecstatic to feel that I'd finally just put all the pieces together. I finished 8th of 32 finalists in a national competition to find the best amateur in the country. But only 1st place moves on to the free ride for next season. I did my best, which was very good, but in this competition, not good enough. And I'm totally fine with that. For the first time in 5 years a had a real opportunity, and I am grateful for that. Although not everyone will agree with me, I think to have this chance, along with 3 days of track time and instruction for FREE, makes everyone a winner!!

Read more about my experience here. If you're looking for an opportunity right now, this is the best thing out there, period. I've learned a lot over the years and I'm serious. Skip Barber doesn't pay me to say this. The rules and requirements have changed somewhat for this year, review them here. If you have any questions let me know.

In other news, I finally got my TAG kart back out last weekend, and it is really a blast. Karting for me now is first about having fun rather than as a tool to move up. And I'm having a lot more fun!

Finally I'm flying out tomorrow for the Sport Kart Grand Nationals. I have to thank my team Indo Pratama Racing for their support for this event! I'll be sure to update was much as possible.