Morgan's Mosport Write-Up

June 24, 2010

So first things first, I just want to say on the record that my very cute Canadian Customs Agent was totally hitting on me.  Carly (my fiancé) had an eye on me, but she was confident in my lack of “game” and not really threatened.  After loading up the rental car and heading east to Ontario, we started soaking up all the glory of Canada, America’s toupee.  So after a pleasant drive with Carly, Jimbo, and a little Miley Cyrus, we pulled into the track. 

The Liberty crew had everything setup by the time we arrived and I jumped in the car to check the belts and seat and all the stuff that comes with driving a new car.  I found Anders Krohn, Zach Craigo, and the one and only Bobby Caldwell.  Off we went on our track walk.  I noticed immediately that this track was not like many others, it was fast, it flowed, and it was going to be awesome.

We had gone over a strict testing plan that was built around acquainting me with the track, but also making sure the car had a solid balance.  Halfway through the first session I came in for some changes and headed back out.  The car was great and the crew was working extremely hard, oh yeah, and we were P1.  We made some drastic changes for the next session and we ended up going the wrong way, but that’s the way it happens sometimes and at least we learned from it.  We still ended the day with the fastest lap on a track I had only driven for two sessions.

On Saturday we knew the rain was coming, it was just a question of when.  The morning went well, we were P1 for majority of the first session until we decided we had learned enough on a drying track and didn’t want to abuse our rain tires.  Qualifying was coming up and it looked like it was going to be dry, and indeed it was.  Unfortunately for my crew, I didn’t have the smoothest session.  On the out lap I was in between the two Allegra cars, in a figurative Brazilian sandwich.  We were getting heat in the tires, but in all honesty we weren’t pushing all that hard.  As Victor went into turn four, he got a little sideways, which caused me to lift.  After I lifted, the car went sideways, BIG, and I knew it was going around.  I stood on the binders, I braced for impact, I closed my eyes…..and nothing.  I opened my eyes, and saw the wall coming at me, but a lot slower than I thought it would have.  I nudged into the tires and somehow got lucky enough to only tear up the rear wing.  About 50 yards up the track I saw an orange blur as Scarallo hit the wall.  I limped back to the pits and the entire Liberty team performed a miracle, somehow getting me back out for two flyers.  Enough for P5, but with all the drama, it was almost like a pole. 

The race was a gamble.  Was it going to rain? Would it stay dry?  I got up to P3 in turn 1, and spun exiting turn two.  Again, a stupid mistake on my part, and one I shouldn’t be making at this point in my career.  The team talked to me, and we regrouped, they kept updating me with the time remaining which was a big help because I knew I had time to fight my way to the front.  We ended up P3 and what had looked like a disastrous day ended up producing some good points.

Sunday I was ready to go, I knew we could be top three and definitely had a chance for the pole.  In qualifying we were P1 for the first four or five laps and then Victor got us with a pretty good flyer.  The handling of the car went away so I stopped for a change.  After going back out I was happier with the car, but I could feel we didn’t have the pace to beat Victor.  I started the race in P2 and I felt like I had something for Carbone in the first five laps or so, but once the tire pressure came up he inched away.  Once he had a decent gap between us I knew he was just maintaining that, I pressured, but it just wasn’t our day.

Looking back on the weekend, I had a great time, I figured out my new favorite track in the world, and got two podium finishes.  Once again the F2000 Championship Series put on an amazing performance.  Now it’s time for Watkins Glen, and it can’t come soon enough.  You stay classy Mosport.

- Cole Morgan