Debutant. Chapter 4. Cold shower. Part 1

Debutant.  Chapter 4. Cold shower.  Part 1

This novel is fictional; there is no need to look for intersections with historical events. This is a continuation of “Debutant” by Nikita Savelyev, the first readers of which were readers of F1News.ru…

Chapter 4. Cold shower

– Carlo Rinaldo, vice world champion, has been competing for Monetti for three years. A lot. Old Mario’s pilots don’t stay long. An experienced racer, but sometimes overly aggressive.

Adam, the Baker team’s first mechanic, commented on the red silhouette rushing by. Henry smiled kindly at his guide to the world of European racing and shuddered at the smell of potent garlic mixed with strong tobacco and machine oil. Small, of unknown age, covered with wrinkles, but a cheerful mechanic began to work on cars even before the Second World War, and his calloused palms touched hundreds of mechanisms.

– And by the way, this is Peter Bridge, your fellow countryman. Nice guy, has been with us for a long time. However, he is only fast on a good day, he can take the title if he is lucky with the car.

Henry walked slowly towards Sandra, hoping to drown out Adam’s deadly mixture of scents with the fragrant perfume aroma. The director’s lovely wife stood calmly at the edge of the track, tense with a stopwatch in her hand – she acted as timekeeper. It should be noted that a very important and responsible task is how else to find out the results of your racer, without constantly running to the judges, but you still need to manage to accurately time the flying car; it is not as simple as it seems at first glance.

“Look, look,” Adam nudged Henry in the side, “Sam Murphy is the current champion, a young guy, not thirty, but incredibly fast, a great sense of speed, I’ve personally never seen anything like it.” And a car, a new Crocus. A real beauty. We would like one of those.

Adam clicked his tongue admiringly at the dark green car. Surprisingly, in Europe (even though the championship is a world championship, the teams are based in the Old World, where most of the stages take place) they raced in fairly weak cars. It turns out that in the first year of the new decade, motorsport officials, concerned about the increase in speed and numerous fatal accidents, decided to reduce engine power from two and a half to one and a half liters.

The elongated, small, squat cars resembled a cigar in silhouette. Unlike America, the engine was unusually located at the rear. Funny of course, these Europeans: they call themselves the cradle of motorsport, but they race in such small cars. But I have to admit, it took some serious courage to take tricky corners at high speed in this thin iron box filled with gasoline.

Adam swayed nervously as the lone Baker Racing driver approached. Edward’s racing team turned out to be completely lean and preferred not to build a racing chassis, but to buy a used version from competitors, install an engine purchased from outside and imagine the resulting design on its own. Well, many in America did this too – often indeed it is both easier and cheaper to use already proven solutions than to try to invent something on your own.

When they were just preparing to fly to Europe, Henry was desperately afraid, it seemed to him that Manuel’s gangsters were about to find him, or that the police had discovered a secret gas tank and were on their way. I remembered with a shudder these hours of sticky horror. Meanwhile, he had to pretend to be carefree in front of his companions, chatter incessantly about how he dreamed of seeing Europe (never in his life), feel the breath of ancient racing traditions (who knows what else) and experience the unique aura of feel the world. monuments (something vague in his memory revolved around schools).

For the first time, he relaxed at least a little in the cabin of the plane. If no one followed him, even if he wanted to, Manuel would not know that he had left the United States. Every day, dozens of planes from different airports take to the airspace. Where can I get a single list of all aircraft that have taken off?

And upon arrival in England it became clear that this was not the time to surrender to melancholy. From the airport, they immediately rushed to the team base. True, the loud name hid a few garages in the British outback, but the main thing was that preparations for the start of the season were already in full swing. And the first test drives are just around the corner. Then Baker desperately wanted to participate in an unqualified race, from there they again rushed to the base, and there it was time to load into trailers and go to the continent, to the Netherlands, for the first stage of the championship.

During his life, Henry had tried the roles of both a racer (very unsuccessfully) and a mechanic (even worse), but he had never been a mechanic for a racer. Against expectations, he plunged into his new work with interest and involuntarily became infected with Edward’s inexhaustible enthusiasm: the boss said that victories are not won by numbers, but by skill, and he was full of historical examples and other nonsense.

To participate in the championship, Edward purchased a chassis from a small English racing company, Thomson. It may not be new, but it is reliable and easy to use, and it has an excellent track record, as the team of the same name once took first place in the overall standings. Things went even better with the engine: Edward reached an agreement with Escort, last year’s brilliant champions, and agreed to supply one of the latest engine modifications. Georges completed the winning combination: he managed to finish in the top three in that very non-qualifying stage, after which even his face no longer resembled the face of a man who constantly eats lemons.

Every member of the small team came to the Netherlands full of hopes for an excellent result, everything went well, if only for one thing…

“One minute and thirty-eight seconds exactly,” Sandra said in a sad voice.

And the first time of the day is no less than seven seconds better, with a lap distance of more than four kilometers. And the first day of training on the track is coming to an end. And no matter how hard Georges tries, he can’t get out of ‘thirty-eight’. And of the twenty riders he is one of the slowest. In general, for those who have not yet understood – a bucket of cold water, a deafening failure, collapse of hope, etc., add it yourself.

When Georges pulled up to their garage, one of the furthest neighbors in line, a colorful group of enthusiasts poured out to greet him. Here is Edward, for once with the corners of his mouth drooping, and Sandra with an uneventful schedule, and Adam with an invariably stinking cigarette, and the ticking second mechanic Roy – he worked at a military airfield for a long time. Henry is in the rear. The only thing missing was Teddy, a trailer driver and part-time rigger, but he must have slept worry-free in the taxi after a grueling journey across half a continent.

From the sour faces of his comrades, Georges realized that no miracle had happened, during this series of circles he did not fly like a bird. Is it just a penguin?

“It looks like the engine can’t run at maximum speed in a straight line,” said the team’s only driver, irritated.

– So it looks like it or not? – Adam threw the cigarette into the corner of his mouth. – Who’s driving?

“The speed is on the limit every time, but the speed is not enough,” Georges snapped.

– If the engine does not run within the required range, the gearbox will only be stressed in vain. Let’s go check it out – we’ve got all night ahead of us,” Adam sighed.

– Friends, a short break, and then we go to war. There is plenty of work,” Mr Baker summed up somberly.

Henry even felt sorry for old Edward, he now looked so much like a child who only saw a hole in the long-awaited gift stocking on the fireplace. There’s something wrong with your car, guys. With such success you can quickly get into trouble. However they come to the logical conclusion: in general, why feed a mechanic who is not so necessary, who accidentally found his way in? What part does Henry have? Apparently there are people who are destined to be lucky and who only have time to avoid the blows of fate.

Having no other ideas, Henry went to fill his stomach – then he would have to spend hours rummaging and going through the hapless car in search of a recipe for speed. Maybe Baker should have just taken something new and not suffered unnecessarily?

== To be continued…

Source: F1 News

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