Off to the races!
The announcement has been made and we are off to the races! Derek will be racing in the Pirelli World Challenge Sprint X race series beginning March 24th. His co-driver will be friend and fellow racer Sean Gibbons, a co-driver that helped Derek bring home the win at Circuit of the Americas last year, the same race track we will be kicking off the racing season with this year. Derek was relieved to have the announcement made and to be able to shift gears into race prep mode. There is so much work to do to put a race season together. The good news is, Derek is becoming more known as a driver and receiving more offers. So far, none of them are a fully paid seat, always requiring work and hustle to be there. Our show on Amazon Prime Video chronicles Derek's effort to race at this level including the challenges to putting together partnerships which help fund the programs. But, these aren't the only challenges we face. We are a family of five that believe in supporting eachothers' dreams and Derek and I want to play a very active role in our kids lives. This requires putting together a schedule that looks much like a puzzle!
Derek was offered to drive in the St. Petersburg Grand Prix but had to make the tough decision to not race partly because of funding and partly because our daughter Haylee qualified for the Oregon State Ski Championships. We chose to be with her to support her dream to achieve a great result in her races.
Overall it went well. Haylee has always been a very driven athlete and is similar to Derek in many ways. Both have had learning challenges with reading and are auditory processors making it very difficult to learn in traditional educational settings. They both have had to work at learning how to learn in a way that works for them. Haylee also has struggled with anxiety and OCD that at times has been very paralyzing for her. We will be sharing what this has been like for her and Derek on our show in Season 2 and beyond. There are a lot of moments when she would prefer the camera to be off and we are working through what she feels comfortable sharing. As a director and someone who hopes to inspire others to work through challenges, I am encouraging the whole family to share their story without shame. We all have challenges to overcome in this life!
Haylee's results were not quite what she had hoped for. Challenges in each race, GS and Slalom, held her back from finishing where she would have liked to. She ended up mid pack in both races. After a bobble in the slalom race, I've never seen her ski so aggressively and fast. One of her coaches pulled her aside later and said, "Haylee I like it when you ski mad!" Basically her performance on the second half of the course made up for a good portion of the problems at the top, but still she was not where she wanted to be. As a parent I know that she will learn more from her losses than her wins. It still doesn't make it easy to watch the repeated finishing just outside of where she would like to be, but I know for life and for her future endeavors skiing or otherwise, she is learning more than she can grasp at the