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I turned 35 years old on November 22nd and my wife surprised me with the gift of speed.  Last Sunday I got to race a NASCAR-style stock car around Atlanta Motor Speedway.  My friend Mike Pennington was cool enough to buy the experience and go with me.  He also thought he could drive faster.  Here’s the deal…

You get to drive the car by yourself.  But you must follow a lead instructor around the track.  If you don’t follow their line, you get a yellow flag.  If you get too close, they wave you back (that’s how they control your top speed).  The goal was to get too close!  At the rookie level, you are only allowed to go up to a 43 second lap (I had 2 laps in the 43 second range).  By the time you sign in and watch a video, you are on the track in a van within 30 minutes.  Within an hour you’re on the track in your own stock car!

I had butterflies when I climbed in to the car, but was pumped with adrenaline when I climbed out.  It’s a cool feeling to drive 140+ mph into some seriously engineered turns.  The back stretch felt so much g’s that you had to force the wheel right to climb to higher ground before turn 3.  AWESOME!