I admit it... I am a Euro-gaming snob.
I'm addicted to racing 'round the cones (autocross).
Regarding the locked board position, I don't think that is possible. Could you post a photo? Either it's a big thing both Gamewright and I missed, or there is a misunderstanding of the rules.
I think that's what we did. We were mistaken in that a base cube away from the outside could be removed if one could slide down and replace it. Read: I tried to replicate it just now and I couldn't figure out how we did it. It was our first play, admittedly.