Upon arriving at the hotel, our sprits were lifted seeing some B13’s strapped to trailers, hearing the unmistakable sound of an SR20 with straight pipes, and a procession of modded Nissans rolling into the parking lot. Lots of prior-year Convention shirts milling about…. Yep. These are our people!
Embassy Suites has always been an awesome place to stay for the Convention, and this year was no exception. The rooms were amazing, the hotel itself is gorgeous, parking was easy, and the two-hour Happy Hour each evening is always spectacular!
As everyone started arriving at the Embassy Suites, word got out that the alcohol was free for hotel guests from 5:30-7:30 every night. If you didn’t know better, you’d think the goal was to see how much alcohol one could drink in the 2 hours allotted. As Thursday’s happy hour came to an end, the NICOclub staff and friends found our way to Texas Roadhouse. Food, friends, spirits… what am I missing here? Oh! Those beautiful girls at the Roadhouse who hooked us up! It’s not easy fitting a group like us into a such a place, but they did it well and seemed to be happy we were there. We took over a substantial chunk of the restaurant, and had a great time. Stacey Acevero (SentraStace) also received her happy 21st birthday celebration there while riding on the Texas Roadhouse saddle.
Allegedly (I disavow any official knowledge), after dinner, the party returned to the NICO Staff Suite at the Embassy, beginning a nightly tradition. A cooler full of Natty and PBR, Coors and Guinness, a room full of rowdy friends drinking into the morning, sharing stories and laughs about some of the happenings on the forums. How no one complained about the noise is still a mystery.
Friday morning’s Drivers’ Meeting at 0730 made for an early wake-up for those of us on west coast time. Introductions were made, and we turned the meeting over to our Trackmaster for the weekend, David Muramoto. For those of you who don’t know Moto, he’s the Editor of Nissan Sport Magazine and an accomplished racer with a long resume. He graciously agreed to provide oversight and instruction as needed for the weekend, and he didn’t disappoint!
Mid-America is a 2.25 mile road course with increasing and decreasing radius turns, a double apex section and lots of runoff area. Visibility is great, and the track is a little wider than most road courses, which made it ideal for beginners to learn the line, and great for more experienced drivers to push their cars to another level.