Friday, April 11, 2014

The Transition of Johnny Swift Part 2 @BNBSbooks @KerryJDonovan

Welcome to the excerpt of The Transition of Johnny Swift Part 2

To read more about UK Author Kerry Donovan click here

To read The Transition of Johnny Swift Part 1 click here

To Pre-Order The Transition of Johnny Swift click here

Anyone placing a pre-order for The Transition of Johnny Swift will receive a FREE e-copy of my crime thriller, The DCI Jones Casebook: Ellis Flynn

Chapter 1 (continued....) 

Brake hard, cut the revs to a throaty purr, hit the apex of turn one, give it more fuel, and away. Foot down hard and up through the gears into top, watch the other cars scramble for position behind as they fight for the running line.
I race clear. The others fall back.
A flashed glance in my right wing mirror shows a black Lotus and a blood-red Ferrari touch front wheels. Tyres lock and send up billowing blue smoke. They slew to the left out of sight.

Is that La Tiempo? Can’t be, or Pete would let me know.
The ‘coming together’ delays the other cars. I take full advantage. The track ahead is empty, and I stretch the lead. If the carnage behind is too great, the marshals will send out the safety car and stop the race.
Turn two, a one-hundred-and-twenty degree left-hander. Have to take this one steady. There’s not enough heat in the tyres to attack full-bore yet, but there’s clear track ahead and my line’s perfect.
At the apex, I punch the throttle to the carbon fibre floor panel, and scream through the corner. Flap the gearshift, up through fifth and into sixth. The TBR hits 215 kph on the short straight. Tyres are warm now, giving me full traction and a wonderful feel for the car. Everything’s on balance.
After another six laps, I enter the hot zone, receiving subliminal signals from the seat, steering wheel, and pedals. Any changes to the car’s attitude transmit directly from the car, through the race suit and into my central nervous system. If the car slides, I feel it in an instant and correct. Loss of traction in the wrong place? Tyres wearing? I respond by braking earlier and being more delicate with the throttle movements.
Can’t rely on my eyes to tell me when things are off-kilter. It’s too late to react by then. I have to ignore irrelevant information, or the sensory overload will cripple me. That’s what I have above the other drivers. I can block out the rubbish, react only to the essentials.
Down five gears for turn five. Hit the entrance to the corner at 98 kph in second gear, take a slice off the inside kerb, dab the throttle and bullet out. The big spoiler on the nose cone takes effect, and the front dips, giving enough grip to set the line for the next turn.
There’s no feeling in the world like this. I am the car, and do no more than allow my little baby her freedom. The TBR wants to be out front leading, and it’s my job to let it happen.
Lap twenty-six. Half way.
The only pit stop on the schedule is in three laps. I’m feather light on the brakes to save the tyres. They are bubbling now and pitting, close to the nub. I need to protect them for five or six more minutes before the tricky part of the race has finished.
The speakers crackle. Pete knows better than to speak unless it’s essential. Concentration is everything.
Frank.” Pete’s voice is clear in the noise-cancelling headphones. “Crash on turn six. Repeat, crash before the apex to turn six. Take the inside line. Possible debris on racing line.
“Got it. How’s the telemetry?”
“Front right tyre’s running a tad hot. We’re monitoring it. No worries so far. Come in to plan.”
I don’t respond but drop into fourth and set the car up for turn three. My twenty-six-point-three second lead on La Tiempo is plenty, despite the pit stop, and he has to pit at some stage.
This race is mine.
I can’t help but start whistling as I ease into the slow corner four. The tune’s a Louis Armstrong favourite, “It’s a Wonderful World.” Pete had it playing in the car on the way home from the orphanage. It’s been my theme song ever since that landmark day.
#
 Bill Jackson, the team’s lead mechanic, shakes his head and shouts across the cramped control centre. “Tyre’s gettin’ worse, Pete. Don’t like it. Get ‘im in now. Won’t last another lap.”
“Right.” Pete Brazier watches as the ten-man pit crew scuttles into position for a fast wheel change. “Ready?” he yells.
The white-suited, red-headed Angus, the team leader, armed with a nose cone jack, raises his left arm in a ready signal. Bill nods and presses the microphone button.
“Frank? That tyre’s nearly gone. Come in this lap. We’re ready for you.”
“Will do.”
 #
 Turn six.
Where’s that bloody debris?
There!
Shredded rubber, pieces of carbon fibre body panels, shards and slivers of metal. They’re all over the racing line, but it’s not a worry now that Pete’s given me fair warning. The carcase of the ruined car’s off the circuit, nestled deep and safe in the gravel run-off.
Drop from fifth into first in a heartbeat, nip inside the danger, rip up the box again in a flash, and I’m out on the turn onto the next short straight..
Spectators wave their arms as I roar past.
From the corner of my eye, Shadowman sits on the engine cowling behind my left shoulder..
Damn it. Go away.
The grey figure stands, sharply indistinct. He’s holding his arms straight out in front at shoulder level, pointing at me. Fingers shimmer in the backwash of the sun. Shadowman is larger than the spectators, closer. He’s blurred too, and floating above the crowd.
What the fuck?
He drops behind as I make the turn.
Fuck’s sake, leave me alone. One more hour. That’s all I need. Please. One more hour and you can do your worst.
There’s no sign of Shadowman in my mirror. The steering wheel twitches. The dodgy tyre clips the inside kerb, black and white painted stripes flicker beneath my wheels, a fluttering, mesmeric blur.
Shaking my head to loosen the image, I floor the throttle. The steering wheel bucks in my hands.
 #
 Pete Brazier frowns in concentration, his eyes dart between the video feed from the trackside cameras and his telemetry screen. The data stream shows Frank easing up on the revs as he approaches the turn into corner six. The engine note drops as the lightweight sports car, Pete’s baby, steps inside to avoid the bits of rubbish.
Good man, Frank. Bring that baby home.
The telemetry shows everything Frank sees on his steering wheel and more: engine revs, oil and tyre temperature, fuel level, slew-angle, torque settings and fluctuations, and g-forces. Apart from the red hot tyre, everything’s perfect.
Frank flits smoothly down to first gear — 55 kph. The slowest he’s been since the race start. Pete allows his relief to show in a thin smile and slow nod. ‘Fiery’ Frank Brazier doesn’t always listen to advice. He doesn’t often have to, being the most naturally gifted driver anybody’s seen since Ayrton Senna.
The TBR rockets out of the corner, but Frank clips the inside kerb.
“Bloody hell. He’s all over the place. He’s too tight to the inside line. What’s he doing?”
Frank ramps up to fifth gear and hits 153 kph in a flash. There’s a fast left in a hundred yards and Frank needs to find the racing line again or he won’t make the turn.
 #
 The steering wheel snaps down hard right and flicks left again, nearly ripping from my hands. I try to compensate but there’s something badly wrong.
The suspect tyre implodes, collapses around the wheel. A noise comes next, compressing my eardrums. My TBR is screaming. The aluminum wheel rim touches tarmac. Sparks fly, and the car lurches towards the metal stanchions of a camera tower. My head snaps against the cockpit side wall. Sights and sounds fuse into a single tangled mess. Grass, tarmac, bollards, buffers, gravel, and metal girders mix and tumble.
I can do nothing but stare at the approaching metalwork and wait for the impact. On the nose cone, Shadowman smiles.

To Pre-Order The Transition of Johnny Swift click here


Anyone placing a pre-order for The Transition of Johnny Swift will receive a FREE e-copy of my crime thriller, The DCI Jones Casebook: Ellis Flynn

2 comments:

  1. Best of luck, Kerry. Thanks for doing these spotlights, K-Trina.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for visiting Mary Ann!! :)

    ReplyDelete

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