AN ALL-NIGHT SHOOTOUT CROWNS NEW CHAMPIONS, BREAKS NEW RECORDS, AND PROVES THE SPIRIT OF LSX RACING CAN NOT BE BROKEN, COME HELL OR HIGH WATER
BY JUSTIN CESLER
PHOTOGRAPHY BY SCOTT PARKER AND JUSTIN CESLER
“Is that rain? It looks like rain... wait, maybe it was just a – nope, nope that’s rain. Oh no, that’s a ton of rain. Everyone get under a cover, here it comes. Damn it.” And rain it did, for the better part of an hour, right in the middle of Saturday’s qualifying session at the 6th Annual LSX Shootout held at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis, Indiana. For a brisk October weekend, a little rain wouldn’t normally be such a big deal – after all, the LSX Shootout doesn’t feel like a race unless we’re up way too late to get it finished – but it wasn’t storm one that had racers bothered, it was the super cell that was behind it, poised to drench Indianapolis and the three major cities around it for all of Sunday and Monday. It was time for the racers, spectators, and NMCA officials to make a tough decision. Do we attempt to dry the track tonight and run the entire race on Saturday or do we gamble it all, call the Saturday portion of the race, and hope that Sunday is better? Hope wasn’t the popular choice, as every radar in the area indicated a massive washout on Sunday, and a Monday morning showdown wasn’t really what anyone wanted.
And so, the NMCA made the call to dry the track on Saturday the 13th of October, and the LSX racers, being the mature, calm, and seasoned crew that they have become, dug in deep, broke out the grills, locked down the pits, and waited over 7 hours for what proved to be one of the most grueling mental and physical races in series history. And in the end, about 10 minutes before 5AM, the 2012 LSX Challenge Series finally concluded. We had new event winners, new points champions, new memories, smiles, frustrations, moments, and new records. The late night racing was fantastic and fierce. The mental strain on drivers was incredibly high, the strain on tires too, with the track at a primo level of preparation. Wheels up, lights out, and records broken; the 2012 LSX Challenge Series all came down to this and come hell or high water, the LSX Shootout was the perfect place for it all to go down.