It wasn’t until I had picked up the boys that I realized the damage to the Batcar (i.e. my 6 month old black Toyota Prius) from last night’s incident with a pole was more severe than initially believed…
We were leaving our exchange location when I heard a loud screeching of something rubbing against metal. I couldn’t place at first what was causing it because I hadn’t heard anything like it when I was driving home last night from the incident nor today while driving around town.
Then it hit me: there was more weight in the car thus meaning it rode lower…and when I hit a bump the car would bounce down to where the bent in metal was rubbing on the tire.
I made Dale sit on the opposite side of the back seat and it worked for a short time. However, when we reached the point we hit the Wal*Mart where we shop for food, the screech was happening even with Dale in his new seating position.
I pulled into the parking lot and realized the metal was bent in a few inches over the tire and there was no way I’d make it back to Memphis like this.
So there I am. Standing in a parking lot in a light drizzle. Dale standing there going “man, that’s really bad, dad.” Eli asking for Skylanders traps. Wondering how I’m going to get home and how I’ll fix the car because it’s going to take thousands and I have about five bucks to spare right now.
All I could do is the one thing I needed to do.
I prayed and asked God how I would get myself and the boys home with the car in the shape it was in.
The answer was immediate.
I literally stopped in my tracks as we were walking inside. W.W.B.S.D.?
“What would Billy Scott do?”
Dale looked at me weird when I laughed at loud for what to him seemed like no reason.
Me and Billy on pit road before the Geico 500.
Who is Billy Scott?
He’s the crew chief for the #55 Aaron’s Dream Machine driven by my guy, Brian Vickers. If you’re new to the blog, this past year I was given a tremendous blessing. My work gave me the chance to go to Talladega, AL and see a race at the legendary Talladega Superspeedway. I turned in well over a dozen packages during my time there from the race events to interviews with drivers to what it was like to camp in the Talladega infield. (Two words: Fun and Insane.)
Joe Moore, legendary voice of Motor Racing Network and all around stud.
I met great folks like Joe Moore, a broadcaster I have in my personal Hall of Fame and staff members at Talladega like Russell Branham who was the typical southern gentleman in making sure all of the media folks had what they needed and then went beyond that to make us all feel appreciated. Good folks all around at Talladega.
Then Sunday came…the folks at Michael Waltrip Racing gave me the tremendous “fantern” experience of being with the crew all day. This means I was able to see them from the opening of the garage through the loading of the car at the end of the race.
Billy’s the guy running the show. He tells the crew what to do. He makes all the hard decisions. He tells Brian to quit driving like Bea Arthur in a Yugo.
During the race, a driver who had no business being on the track had the unmitigated gall to bump into Brian. He caused damage to the car’s quarter panel similar to the damage on my car.
Billy Scott as taken from behind on the pit box during the 2014 Geico 500.
That’s when it all hit me like a flood. I saw how Billy Scott had the car fixed at Talladega.
Rubber mallet and elbow grease.
It came back plain as day…the guys on the crew pounding out the sheet metal. My looking down from the pit box over Billy’s shoulder as they made it so the car could run without the metal rubbing on the tire.
A rubber mallet at Wal*Mart? $2.99.
It took me about 20 minutes to get everything done to the point there was no more tire rub and it didn’t look like someone had been pounding on my beloved Toyota Prius with a mallet.
We drove home with no problems.
All because I was able to answer the question…What Would Billy Scott Do?