Racing Documentary: “Double Down” on NASA’s 25 Hour of Thunderhill

With the current hype of the Hollywood blockbuster film Ford v Ferrari, starring Matt Damon and Christian Bale, the general public is suddenly interested in this little race in France called the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Admittedly, Ford v Ferrari is a good movie, and the 24 Hour of Le Mans is an awesome race.

But, we here in the United States (where we do things bigger), we have our own endurance race, and it’s one-hour longer than the one in France. It’s called the 25 Hours of Thunderhill, and the green flag drops this Saturday at 11:00 a.m. in Willows, California.

Racing for 25 Hours requires lots and lots of pit stops and maintenance on a car. To win the race is to spend as little time in the pits as possible. The over-the-wall pit crew has to be top-notch.

If you like racing documentaries, then we suggest checking out Double Down, a full-featured racing documentary on the 25 Hours of Thunderhill, available to watch for free on YouTube (see the trailer HERE).

The film follows a team of ragtag hot rodders who decide they are going to take two Nissan Sentra SE-Rs and compete in the E3 class at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill. During the long grueling race, the team has to deal with close calls on track, mechanical disasters, darkness, team drama, and sleep deprivation. Double Down is the road racing equivalent of the epic Baja 1000 documentary From Dust To Glory.

The film Double Down shows that you need a lot more than luck to do well in a 25-hour race. You need resources, and lots of them. A large crew of close friends is what fuels the team to Survive the 25 and chase glory into the night.

NASA’s 25 Hours of Thunderhill has six classes ranging from the high-speed ESR (prototypes) to mid-range E0 (modified E3 BMWs) to the average joes in the E3 class (Mazda Miatas and in the case of Double Down: Nissan Sentras). Racing through the night with multiple classes and huge speed differentials on track (a Porsche GT3 at 170 passing a Mazda Miata at 115) causes big drama, and this documentary is filled with all of that adrenaline-spiking racing drama.

Get your popcorn, put YouTube up on your big-screen SmartTV, and turn up the sound for Double Down.

Ford v Ferrari will set you back around $13 for a movie ticket, but this racing drama, Double Down, is absolutely free on YouTube. Strap in, put your visor down, and enjoy the ride. This is real racing, real gritty, and it really happened. Check it out below.

Pro-tip for watching the film: This isn’t a Marvel movie, but you do want to watch through the credits. At the end of the race, the pit crew got ahold of the documentary film maker’s camera and a stolen case of rum. You can guess how it goes from there.

(Ed. Note: Full disclosure — Rob Krider is a regular contributor here on TURNology (and obviously, a really good self-promotor), but this film is an excellent documentary on what life is like to run the 25 Hours of Thunderhill. Check it out; we think you’ll like it!)

About the author

Rob Krider

Rob Krider will race absolutely anything. He is a multi-national champion racing driver and is also the author of the novel, Cadet Blues.
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