31 March, 2009

Day 2 Race

Well, sorry for the delay on the day two race report. It was a hectic week last week, and frankly, I was eager to spend some time in the garage this weekend making a few improvements. Better late than never!

Day two started off better than day one, simply because I didn't get dragged in on a hook. I mnaged to get through the practice and qualifying sessions with no issues. Likewise the race too, although I noticed an oil leak after the race that was significant enough to warrant further investigation back in the garage.

But back to the race. We still had the Nascar guys with us, although there were a few less regular ARC members. Maybe 20 racers instead of 25 like on Saturday. My times were identical on Sunday, even though there was a significant head wind. As in, 30mph winds all day long. It was coming from the West, so I was head on going up the hill from turn 6 to 9. The longest section of fourth gear acceleration on the course, even longer than the front straight. I was seeing 300-400rpm less into turn 9 because of the head wind. Worse yet, there is no section of course longer than 50 yards that runs west to east, so I had no advantage of a tail wind.

End of Front Straight, Helmet Buffeting in the Wind

I gridded toward the back again, and didn't get a great start. A Mustang got by me at the green flag, and really parked it into turn 1. An RX7 and Miata got by me into 2 as a result. I played it cool and let things sort out for a lap. I knew I was quicker lap time wise compared to a few cars ahead of me, so I just reeled them in. I made a great pass on the RX7 on the outside of turn 2. Just drive around him and we were side by side into turn 3, me having the better line. I caught the Miata a lap later into turn 3, and got by into the cyclone (turn 5) on braking. After that, I just ran consistent times, and once again cut my fastest lap of the weekend on lap 11 of 11 laps.

Passing the RX7 on the Inside

There was however, some controversy after the race. A GT1 Corvette spun on the exit of turn 1, and was just parked on the edge of the track. Waving yellow into turn 14/15, and waving yellows on the front straight for the last 3 laps. Unfortunately, I got passed by three cars, two into turn 14, one on the front straight in view of everyone. Apparently those cars got black flagged with two laps to go, and parked. So i moved up several spots in teh stands. I finsihed mid pack, first in GT4. With two points races under our belts in 2009, I have two wins.

I'm a weiner!

After the race, I have a small laundry list of fixes. Things I should have worked on over th winter, but didn't because I was so tied up in the new engine, and eventually worn out.

Item 1 - Relocate the steering box forward, and run an extended pitman arm to help speed up the steering. Between turn 3 and 6, I have to shuffle back and forth on the wheel, and it gets old fast.

Item 2 - build a new breather box or puke box. My current puke box is a 1 quart oil can that has apparently rubbed through on its mount. That meant I sloshed oil all over the inside of the body, which ran up under the pedals. After a good douching off, everything is clean now, but I want to fix that. In addition, the 1,700cc engine had a LOT more case pressure, so a better solution is required.

Item 3 - The throttle cable support bracket worked loose during the race. Nothing failed, I just noticed it was loose. It was always mickey mouse (one of the things I did not change when I got it) so i want to make a real bracket.

Item 4 - Relocate the battery a little lower so it doesn't rub on the front nose cone body work.

I've already worked on Item 1, which will be detailed later.

Chris H.

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