I will be co-driving the enduro on Scott's car. Should be fun. We both have to learn a new track so things could get dicey. I'll try really hard not to wreck his car :) Or maybe a little rough driving will put him out the first half of the season and I'll get a chance to win some tires! Kidding! Sort of . . .
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Thursday, October 7, 2010
WAAAAHOOOO! What a weekend! Picked the car up Thursday afternoon from Performance Auto Works. I was a little concerned about blowing up my freshly rebuilt and paid for engine so Billy told me to take it easy in Friday morning's practice and check for leaks or parts falling off. All I can say is that there was not a drop of oil coming out of that engine by Friday afternoon and it ran beautifully all weekend. I can't say enough about Billy and the guys getting the engine rebuilt on time and on budget and not a hiccup in what turned out to be my best weekend of racing yet.
Saturday was outstanding. Sprint one went my way early as Scott and Bella crashed out of turn one Nad John missed a shift leaving 2nd place mine to lose. Drove hard with John and Evan and ended up 2nd.
Sprint 2 was epic. I got a good start and got past John and chased Sean for two or three laps when all of a sudden two Spec Boxsters spun out in turn 1. Sean was closer to the spin and had to almost come to a stop. I took that opportunity to squeak past him and then kept him and John behind for the next million laps. I thought that race was 25 minutes but it turned out to be 35 minutes. I've never wanted to see a checker so badly in my life. Sean and John were literally on my bumper for 20 laps. It was a tremendous amount of work keeping them there. I planned my one move the best I could. I tried to rob them of their momentum and get back on the gas sooner. I tried using lapped traffic as a pick. At one point we came through turn 1 3 wide and I still do not know how I squirted out in front of them. I was getting really tired and on the last corner of the last lap I slid a little wide in turn 10 and had to lift just enough for Sean to get beside me and beat me to the checker by about 2 feet. On the cool down the corner workers were all waving and giving me some very enthusiastic thumbs up. It must have been pretty entertaining to watch. I ended up finishing 3rd in class.
Saturday night was really great as my wife and daughter came to the awards dinner and I was able to go get my 2nd and 3rd place trophies.
Best of all, the corner workers awarded me the "Worker's Choice" award for my crazy drive in the second sprint. I guess they did have a lot of fun watching the battle. Getting a Worker's Choice is something very special to us amateurs.
Sunday was another great day. I scored two 4th place finishes in the sprint and the 90 minute enduro. Better yet was the near perfect conditions for our old air cooled cars. I saw my personal best time of a 1:25.449. I still have a lot of work to do in order to see a consistent 1:25 but I'm getting closer.
Lots of good racing this weekend with John, Sean, Evan and the rest of the NE PCA'ers who came down to play at our little track in WV.
Here is a compilation of the starts and a few laps of each race:
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Wow. What a weekend. Mixed emotions about the results. I set a personal best of 1:25.95 in the Saturday morning practice but was unable to match that pace in the afternoon race. Same thing on Sunday. I decided to put in my stock chip in order to run lighter. Seemed like a good plan as I was only one tenth off my best lap. Alas, the afternoon heat foiled me again as my pace fell off quite a bit.
I need to figure out how to keep my pace up regardless of time of day. The mornings when the air is a little cooler and the track temps are lower is just perfect. In the afternoons the car seems to be down on power and the tires get very greasy after 6 or 7 laps. Not ideal but everyone is dealing with the same parameters and I need to figure out how to maximize my driving no matter what is happening on track.
The weekend ended with a broken crank pulley. Jeff fixed it of course. Jeff fixes everything!
Now I need to build on those fast laps and make them consistent.
Next up is the PCA Club Race October 1-3!
And my secret plan . . . .
Here are some videos of the weekends action:
Monday, August 16, 2010
Great weekend with the Porsche Club at Summit Point. My student was a very pleasant surprise. It rained on Friday and he handled it just fine. Actually he handled it very, very well. He wasn't quite flat out but he will get there soon.
Weather was a major factor. I must have changed tires 100 times anticipating a wet or dry or drying track. Fantastic practice in the wet. I went out on a damp track with the Hoosier R6's on. Without going too crazy I got a good feel for how they are on a wet track. I had two opportunities to run the Hoosier wets. These things should be illegal! I know they can go faster but it just doesn't seem possible. It was pouring rain and I had the entire track to myself. I wish it had gone on for another 30 minutes because I got a little bolder each time around. Your brain just screams that you can't go that fast in the rain but you can! It was a very good weekend for rain practice.
We did get some dry sessions. I was able to set a personal best of a 1:26:39 as determined by my new G2X purchsed at OG Racing. This thing is great! My chief engineer, Jeff, installed it in a few hours in his boiling hot garage. He is the man because I'm pretty sure he lost a few pounds out there. He also overlayed my laps with Scott's and we were able to see where I need to be more agressive. It's very helpful to know exactly where you are losing time. I was able to focus on T9 and saw some gains right away. If you don't have data you should think about getting some soon.
I also ran with my new front oil cooler. Sooooo much better. Temps never got to 200. I was running at 250 or a touch above even in mild weather before Performance Auto Works put in the cooler. Great improvement. Knowing I don't have to worry about temps will keep me from backing off a few laps in to save the motor.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Hyperfest is always chaos. racing, drifting, girls and fights.
Wouldn't miss it for the world!
Finished 4th and 5th. It was hot. REALLY REALLY HOT! Had to back off during the enduro as the engine ran too hot. Oil cooler getting installed soon!
Monday, June 14, 2010
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
Sprints 1 and 2. These are PCA stock classes E,F,G and H. E is the slowest and H is the fastest. Multi-class racing makes for some interesting situations. You can find yourself racing a car not in your class just to get to a car in your class to race. It can be a lot of fun. The enduro group was broken up differently where E class was the fastest.
Sprint 1 has a lengthy caution as one driver bounced off the SAFER barrier in turn 11 and came back across the track to collect a very well driven E car. Sprint 2 only had some local yellows. That was a lot of racing!
All in all, the Glen is always great and every time I go I get a little better.
Monday, May 31, 2010
Wow! Too much fun! But when is Watkins Glen not fun?
Friday practice was pretty rough. First race weekend and first time at the Glen in a year. Times were bad in the morning but during the practice starts and the fun race I picked it up a little.
I placed 8th in Sprint 1 and 5th in Sprint 2. Not too bad. The hometown boys have a pretty big advantage up there. Track time is everything! I wish I could get there more.
The enduro was a blast for about an hour then things went bad. I battled it out with number 277 and number 112 for the first 35 minutes. Loads of fun. I learned a whole lot chasing those guys. Watching them really helped me clean up my line in T8 and 9. I was really hitting the bus stop well also.
Highlights coming soon!
Here's a video of my mishap in the Toe:
Sunday, May 16, 2010
Great weekend with Schatt at SP main. The morning sessions were run in the mid-70's which is just beautiful for an air-cooled car. I decided to put on my sticker Hoos to see if they would improve things. Since I broke my video camera on Saturday and no one put up a beacon I didn't get any lap times for the first run. I can say this, the new tires fixed all kinds of issues from Saturday. Particularly turn 3. I couldn't hit 3 comfortably all day on Saturday. New tires and all my troubles went away. Hoosiers are crack cocaine plain and simple. The first session felt really really good.
I did get some times from the second session and am very pleased with the results. I had a few clear laps and put together some laps back to back in the mid- 1:26's. That's good for now. On any given day the track can vary time wise, particularly after a big rain, so I'm pretty happy at the moment.
The bad news is that I went too deep trying to chase a screaming BMW into turn 1 and flat spotted the heck out of one of my 2 heat cycle old Hoosiers. At least it was only one and at least I stayed in the turn and not the gravel.
Overall, good result even if it ended early.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
FATT on Friday and 2 days with Schatt at Summit Point Main. So far so good. The car defintely feels stiff. Real stiff.
Ride height is lowered. Real low! CV boots are rubbing a little. Now you might think that would mean raising the ride height. Not when you are talking to a race mechanic! A race mechanic gets a hammer, a big one, and a punch and just starts banging away until the offending piece of bodywork is beaten out of the way.
Softened the front sway a touch. The track feels a little slippery after then huge rain a few days ago so my understeer may go away as more rudder gets ground in.
I was hoping to see some better times but it may take a few more track days to dial it in and learn the new setup.
Big thanks to Marc Francis from OG Racing for the shop gloves!
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Finally done! My buddy Jeff doggedly spent 3 weekends rebuilding my transmission and installing my LSD. Thank you Jeff!
Now I'll have to get used to driving with the LSD. Hard to feel the difference on the street without driving like a crazy person. I try to avoid that in a bright red car with numbers on it and minimal muffling!
3rd gear feels great. I should say it feels normal which is a good thing.
The car is now at Performance Auto Works at Summit Point getting the front shocks and torsion bars installed. I need camber plates to fit the new front shocks but thankfully this year they are allowed in PCA stock classes.
The new tail doesn't quite fit but I'm sure they can massage it into place.
One week to go for my first track event of the year!
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Pictures of progress:
New shocks installed
Transmission coming together
The secret weapon uncloaked!
It's not really a secret weapon, it's an LSD that I'm rebuilding with Guard guts. I'm told it's worth 2 seconds ;)
And a fun video from the Watkins Glen Club Race last year:
Friday, April 23, 2010
Truechoice Koni Racing is AWESOME!
They rebuilt my rear shocks to match the shocks I was going to buy but had to rethink due to the backorder. They look brand new.
They did this in 9 days round trip. And it only cost $40 each for expedited service.
With lap times down on the new pavement at Summit Point I can't wait to get my new set up on the track!
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Foiled by a mislabeled part! An unnamed parts supplier (not OG) sent the wrong synchros so 3rd gear remains in pieces as does the car. Meanwhile, Nasa enjoyed a race weekend on the newly paved Summit Point main track. Wish I could have been there.
On a good note, Jeff and I fitted my new (to me) rear wing. It's fiberglass, weighs 15lbs less than the factory wing, is a little longer and a little wider. I'm told it's worth 2 seconds at Summit. Maybe 3 at VIR. It needs paint and clasps ilo the catch but otherwise it fits pretty well.
Here are some pics:
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
It seems that the beginning of the racing season may not be the best time to order stuff. My rear Konis are back ordered until the end of June. Big bummer. Plan B is now in full swing. Since the engine is out I can get the rear shocks out in seconds. TruChoice can re-valve for my specific application in a week for a small extra fee. What that means is that my schedule has been moved up! I'll now be able to get the car back together sooner! I'll have my re-valved shocks next week instead of May 1! Yeah!
Now if I could only find some talent by the end of April . . .
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Spent the weekend at Jeff's house. Jeff does a lot of the wrenching on my car while I stand around and ask dumb questions. Sort of like my day job where I question the way every one is doing whatever it is they they are doing. I must say, "are you doing that right?" a hundred times a day.
We dropped my engine and dove into investigating my 3rd gear grind. When we opened the drain plug to empty $70 of Swepco into a catch basin a gear tooth clattered across the garage floor. It didn't get better from there. Turns out the 3rd gear dog teeth are almost completely rounded off and the nearly new syncro ring is worn smooth. It must be substandard parts because my coach at VIR said I was a very good shifter :)
Screw it, I'll just buy a GT3 Cup for next season.
On another note, I've seen the secret weapon. I cannot say where but I can say it is close, very close . . .
Friday, April 9, 2010
This weekend, at an unnamed location, I'm going to acquire my secret weapon. I'm also going to begin to rebuild my 3rd gear. 915 transmissions are finicky and old. Mostly old. It always amazes me to get out of the 911 and into the Boxster and realize how far transmissions have come. And the Boxster is 9 years old now!
With third gear fixed and new shocks I should be at least 6 seconds faster! OK, maybe .6 but at least I'll be eliminating one of my "goto" excuses :)
I also saw that SUmmit Point Main was getting paved! Hooray! last time they paved the track records fell by the dozens! The Nasa race should be great on April 17/18!
Saturday, April 3, 2010
What a great day. The weather was perfect, sunny and clear. Perfect weather for teaching the next batch of sports car enthusiasts the basics of high speed driving.
PCA hosts a High Performance Driving Clinic twice a year on the Jefferson Circuit at Summit Point. This on track and classroom program is a terrific introduction to driving your car at speed on a race track. Obviously this is something that many people who purchase a Porsche or other sports car will want to try.
The day starts with braking exercises, slalom exercises, and skid pad. Its a lot of cars flying around the track with instructors jumping in and out. Each student runs each exercise a half a dozen times then its time for lunch.
After lunch the fun begins as the students are let loose on the track under the capable guidance of the PCA Instructors. There is a wide variety of skill levels. It is pretty amazing to see how one person will get the braking exercise easily but slalom will completely mess them up. Then, as they try to put it all together, how each deals with what is admittedly an overwhelming experience. So much sensory overload! My student did very well and will go on to have a lot of fun at DE's in the future.
The instructors got a 30 minute session on track which left me wanting more, much more. I drove to the track this morning so I had my street tires on. That actually turned out to be a lot of fun. Lots of moving around. I haven't been on track on streets for years. I'm not sure my student appreciated it as the car moved around a LOT when I took him out for some hot laps :).
All in all, a very good day. New students are great as 99% of them leave with HUGE grins and the enjoyment of sharing your passion with a group of like minded people is a day very well spent.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
The new plan that is . . .
OK, torsion bars set to arrive tomorrow.
Konis are back ordered until April 30th.
Family commitments prevent me from getting to the track before mid-May.
This allows me time to install my secret weapon and get a new family so nothing like this ever happens again.
At least I'll have all the improvements done so I wont be making any big adjustments later in the season.
Email me if you find any other families that may be motor sport enthusiasts or have interests of their own that take up their weekends :)
Wow! What a disappointment at Sebring. A freak occurrence takes out Flying Lizard! I can't stand watching Ferrari win!
While I do like Porsche to beat Corvette I would rather it be on the track and not the pits!
It looks like my first race of the season is going to be postponed a while due to a previously scheduled family event. Family, they just get in my way. Ha!
Still trying to track down shocks. Torsion bars are on the way.
Maybe by the time I finally get on track I will have all of my improvements done. That would be great.
Saturday, March 13, 2010
Just finished watching the Conti Tire Challenge! I don't know if I can wait another 4 weeks to get on the track.
Alas, it gives me time to acquire my new shocks. I've decided to go with the Koni race shocks in the front and the sports at the rear after a very nice guy at Koni reviewed my set up. The big advantage to the Konis is they are off the shelf. No time and $$$ lost re-valving!
Billy at Performance Autoworks at Summit Point may have a rear torsion bar which would be great.
So I'll end up with a 23mm/31mm setup that should be pretty solid on the new shocks.
I will probably go with the Smart Racing Sway bar (available at OGracing.com) since the bars can be switched out later if needed. I have 2 recommendations on that, either go with a 27mm/24mm or go all the way and get a 31mm/27mm.
I did go to OG Racing in Sterling last week and purchased a new balaclava and some SRF brake fluid. From everything I've been told or read this is supposed to be the best brake fluid out there. Less bleeding would be great! Less fade would be great! Pretty pricey stuff though.
I also had my eye on the new AIM MyTach GPS Data Training Watch. It looks neato! I'm afraid I'll crash looking at my watch though :) There is an included dash mount.
I did walk out with a very nice Sparco jacket with the WRC logo and a zip out lining. I almost want winter to come back again. Ha!
I'll spend tomorrow organizing my new garage area and getting my new tool situation ironed out. That is unless the wife has other plans!
Friday, March 12, 2010
First Race of 2010 will be with NASA at Summit Point April 17!
There are a few things I need to do first:
Drop the engine and trans to rebuild 3rd gear. That should take about 20 minutes :)
While everything is out of the car I'm thinking of upgrading the following:
New Koni shocks. My old ones are very tired. Or maybe I'm too fast?
New front and rear torsion bars.
New sway bar.
Install secret weapon.
That's a pretty big list for the next 30 days. I'm sure my buddy Jeff can handle it with adequate supervision from me :)
I may only have time to get the trans work done and gather up the rest of the parts for the suspension upgrade later. At least that way I'll still have an excuse for being slow!
My big goal for this year is to get out of mid-pack and onto the podium!
In the meantime, here are some videos from last year: