On August 5th, we raced in Holyoke, CO. Some of April‘s family have a farm near Holyoke so they made it out to the race and had their first adventure in sprint car racing.
Justin started out the main feature fighting through traffic. After that, he was on a rocket mission! He was a full straightaway behind the race leader but he was able to chase him down! Each lap he gained on the red 17. Justin was super smooth and screaming fast! They both eventually caught lap traffic and had to split around a lap car...Justin went high and the lap car jerked up, crashing into Justin, catching the left front of the 05. Thankfully Justin kept the car from flipping the wall and getting thrown upside down but they started him at the back with only a couple laps to go.
We were extremely frustrated knowing that he had this race won as he was the fastest car out there. But it was a blast to watch him rip it up! We tried again the next night in Ft. Morgan but missed the set up. Justin had to battle through the back pack but the track was super greasy so he was not able to make it happen.
Our hearts are heavy for Bryan Clauson’s family as they deal with losing him in a horrific midget crash. He was a legend in the world of racing and the community grieves for him.
Some thoughts from April..
Loving a race car driver is an experience that many people will never understand. Big dreams come with extreme highs and massive lows, with much thrills and much loss. There are times of great excitement, heart pounding moments full of celebration and so much fun. There are also times of frustrations, brokenness and lost hope. Sprint car racing specifically is always right on the edge of disaster or success.
I knew that when I married Justin that I would be in for an adventurous journey and I would also be marrying into the racing world and needed to be fully committed. I decided that I was not going to sit at home while he traveled to tracks so I made a commitment to learn about racing and fully support him. I became his PR person and eventually learned how to help in the pits and drive the push rzr. His dreams soon became mingled with mine and I found myself passionate about the sport and chase his dreams by his side instead of following behind.
I absolutely love it and I also hate it.
Growing up with brothers, I am naturally competitive but more than that, I am protective. Dirt racing is scary and every race makes my guts hurt, my teeth grind and my heart beat out of my chest.
It scares me every time that Justin gets in to a race car but I refuse to live in that fear. Every day things can harm us, freak accidents can happen and even daily driving (as we know) can almost kill you. We can't allow that fear to control or consume us or we will never do anything outside of our comfort zone nor will we go after dreams that God has placed in our hearts. I tend to get all twisted up before a race weekend and have to lay my worries down and give each one to God. Each preparation, each sponsor, each dollar, each trip, each mile, each and every time Justin straps into the race car… is fully covered in prayers. Crazy things still happen but with each one, we become stronger, learn new things and give God glory through each lap.
We are on this journey together, through the bumpy tracks and the through the checkered flags.
My heart goes out to the Clauson family and Bryan’s fiancé and even his beloved doggies for even though they knew the risk of loving a race car driver, they never imagined or could be prepared for something so tragic.
By his side