Novac's Run

Bruno runs to the platform between the train cars chasing Jack and smashes him across his face with the big pistol. Jack falls back against the rail separating the cars and slumps to the steel floor. The train lurches and Bruno stumbles backward against the door trying to keep his balance. He grabs the door to steady himself and charges back toward Jack. The train slows and then speeds up as it crests a hill. Bruno stumbles on the uneven steel plates of the platform. He is off balance again and comes toward Jack with his head down and his arms outstretched to catch his fall. Jack pulls his knees to his chest, his feet catch Bruno in the stomach. Using Bruno’s own momentum, Jack pushes his legs up and vaults Bruno’s helpless bulk over the rail. The scream abruptly stops as he plummets under the thundering steel wheels.

Maddy bursts through the door and helps Jack to his feet.

“I was sure he was going to shoot you Jack, he seemed to go over the railing in slow motion and then get sucked under the train. That was awful but I could not take my eyes away.”

Jack puts his arms around Maddy and hugs her to him tightly. “It’s ok now baby, we need to think about getting off this thing before we get to the next station. We can’t be far from the border now. We’re coming into another turn let me see if I can see what’s up ahead.”

As the train goes around the turn, Jack can see past the line of cars.

“We are going up another hill with a turn at the top of it. The train will be going pretty slow as it makes the turn. It looks like a hay field on the outside of the turn. That should make for a pretty soft landing. Make sure you clear the road bed.”

Maddy looks down as the countryside flashes by at what seems to her to be an impossible speed. She looks back at Jack with her eyes wide. “What, Jack? Do you think I am going to jump from this train?”

“We’re gonna have to jump off this thing. Don’t think about it, just jump when I tell you. Let’s go, Maddy. Roll when you hit the ground. Come on, get ready it’s slowing down. Jump!”

In 1934 Italy, racing driver Jack Novac makes his dreams happen. Mercedes wants him to test their Grand Prix car. At the fabulous Nurburgring Jack is fast and never puts a wheel wrong. Herr Neubaur is so impressed not only by Jack’s speed but also by his car control. Jack makes going fast look easy. In Stuttgart, Jack meets Maddy Rosen, a sports journalist who is there to interview Novac for her English magazine. Jack is enchanted by this woman, whose life and family are being torn apart by Nazi doctrines. She is very reluctant to entertain any of Jack’s advances telling him she is Jewish and her life is too complicated. Racing has consumed Jack’s whole life, but now he can’t stop thinking of her; she has captivated Jack’s very soul. The French Grand Prix is to be Jack’s first Mercedes race. This will be the crown jewel of Novac’s career. He arrives to find the Gestapo waiting to arrest him. A fanatical Nazi, Count Von Steuben, wants Jack dead; the two men had skirmished earlier in Monte Carlo over the disappearance of the Count’s wife. Von Steuben succeeds in arresting Jack, taking pleasure in torturing him in the depths of Gestapo headquarters. Badly mauled, Jack is rescued by an American agent and delivered to Maddy to be revived enough to get out of Germany. Now Jack, together with Maddy, must run for their lives. They race across the dangers of Germany trying to stay ahead of the mad man. Von Steuben will stop at nothing to kill them both. In the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, on Cunard’s ship nicknamed the Magic Stick, it all comes down to a desperate last-man-standing duel.
Passion is a sustaining element in my life. Passion for living, for producing good work, and for expanding my abilities. After a forty-year career of professionally racing sports cars, writing became a passion. As an avid follower of American history and early auto racing, I have combined the two in my novels.