volksdragon: (Autocross)
This past Sunday (the hottest day of the year) was New England Region's 5th points event of the year. I've driven every points event so far, as I'm hotly in contention for the STS class championship. Along with my Co-Driver, we've ended up usually first or second, and always top-3, with me coming out on top. We're driving a well-prepared 1993 Honda Civic SI, one of the best in STS in the country. The car's owner is one of the fastest ST class drivers (and CM drivers this year) that I've ever seen, definitely top-5 fastest in our region, and Nationally competitive. I'm sure it's killed him to see his car driven so below its normal level this year. I've been having some issues coming to grip with this car. It's DAMN fast, corners like no other Auto-X car I've driven (I'm sure the Viper pulled more G on the skidpad, but it might be close, the Datalogger on this thing recorded 1.13G already, and I know it'll do more), accelerates great thanks to the modified intake and massaged head, and stops FAST thanks to nice new Hawk brake pads. The Konis are amazing, and this is all being done on Falken ST-615s, no Kumho or Hoosiers here.

Solo2 talk under here )
volksdragon: (Workout)
We just repacked the entire New England Region SCCA race truck in 2.5 hours. Considering all of what's normally in it was PACKED into a storage unit in Millis, and there were... 4 of us, I'm calling this a job well done. I'm going to get some pictures of the truck interior tomorrow, Jerry Shields did a FOINE job refinishing the entire inside. Now it's not just an old rental truck, it's really a race-truck, purpose rebuilt! It's now parked happily in my driveway, taking up an enormous amount of space. (Think 17-foot moving van, and that's what's in my driveway. At least I could drive it all the way up to the top so it didn't have to rest on the parking brake.)

Oh, and I stopped to fill it up with gas on the way home. I put just over a half tank in there... $69. YIKES. Good thing I'm getting reimbursed.

Race Day Sunday! *SQUEE*
volksdragon: (Default)
Oh yeah, to protect us from ourselves.... forgot.

http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/14.04/play.html?pg=7
volksdragon: (Default)
Tonight was the night for myself, the car owner and the other co-driver to all meet and discuss details about co-driving the owner's car for this Autocross season. I was offered a chance to get in on this deal a few weeks ago, as I'm still out a racing car, and THIS is really my year to save up the $$$ for it.

We did it just like businessmen do, at Golf courses, except we did it at the indoor Go-Kart track. We raced three races (I'm still getting faster!) and then sat down to hammer out details.

A lot of the details (prices for the rental) had been mostly decided over email, this was just to nail that down, as well as prices for damage accrued, when the car would be available, what kind of tires were going to be purchased, and things like that. We all came to agreement over the terms, and starting in April, I'll be racing the car that placed 10th at Nationals last year in STS Class, a 1992 Honda Civic SI prepped to within an inch of its life (and the class rules). The car owner says (and has results to back up) that it's probably top-3 if not THE best STS class car in at LEAST the region, if not the east coast, and is capable of winning 1st place at Nationals with the right driver. That's probably not me first year, but it's nice to know the slow thing will be me, and not the car, so I know what to work on. :)

So, yeah, excited.

This isn't THE car, but it looks pretty much like this one. Same year, same color, different wheels (and this one's slower)
Car pic under here )
volksdragon: (Workout)
Myself and a friend from the autoX group I drive with went to a new(ish) Go-Kart place called racing America (www.racingamerica.com) last night. I hadn't driven Karts in a few years, and this guy is pretty good, so my main goal was not to get lapped. :)

I actually did pretty well. The track was awesome, laps were between 45-50 seconds (fastest folks to slowest folks), with a lot of corners and a couple of straights. The karts were nice, although the second one I had was most assuredly more slippery (in terms of cornering ability) than the first one. I got my best time for a lap down to 47.43, which is pretty good, as my buddy expected I'd turn a 49 or so since it was my first time out. More importantly, I didn't get passed (virtually on time, or really on track), and I managed to pass a couple of the slower cars that ended up in front of me. I concentrated pretty hard on taking a good line through the corners, and it really brought my times down pretty good at some points. :)

By the end of the two sessions, my hands were killing me. Those little Karts generate some good G-force! Gotta go back there soon. Anyone else wanna come? :)

Oh, and my fastest time? 9th fastest for the week. Whee!!!
volksdragon: (Workout)
So, 7 teams didn't race at the Indianapolis Formula 1 race this weekend, leading to a joke of 6 cars racing. I watched it. If it wasn't so sad, it would have been funny.

Michelin advised the 7 teams that run its tires that it couldn't guarantee their safety if they raced, due to their tires being insufficient for racing at Indy, with the high speeds and downforce generated on the banked turn 13. They also had not provided a secondary tire for use for some reason this weekend.


Now, let me get this straight. Michelin, the dominant tire manufacturer in F1 right now, who have been racing Formula 1 for 5 years, and many other races for much longer, managed to LOSE ALL THEIR CAREFULLY MAINTAINED DATA from the past 5 races, that indicate just how much stress these tires are under in that corner, and designed a tire that was unable to sustain the speeds necessary without exploding, causing not one, but two accidents in qualifying/practice, and then quite probably ended any chance of F1 making any in-roads into the US for a long time, if ever. AND, then have the gall to ask that the track be redesigned to allow their cars to run safely, when it was their responsbility in the first place.

Michael Schumacher put it pretty well: "Bridgestone-shod teams haven't been performing as well at many of the races, but we finally showed up with as reliable and well-performing tire for this race. Can you imagine what would have happened if, at previous races, we didn't have the qualifying speed in two laps, and so we asked for a third lap to qualify better? We would have been laughed off the grid."


It's all sad, ugly, and a bad blow for Formula 1.

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