Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Midwestern Council Double Race Weekend and Up-Coming ELVF

We’re preparing for VSCDA’s Elkhart Lake Vintage Festival this coming weekend at Road America.

Our most recent outing was Midwestern Council’s “Double Race Weekend” at Road America. MC is a regional organization that makes Blackhawk Farms Raceway  in northern Illinois its home. We don’t do a whole lot with them because they usually run single-day events and I don’t like to make trips for a single day. The Double Race Weekend is an annual special though, with the corner workers being treated to rides at speed in the race cars.

Smiles! That is what getting a ride brings.

There were no classes in our group. The speed disparity was pretty stark. with a couple Cheetahs blowing past most of us like we were standing still, thought they are not so hot in the corners. And I walked up to the driver of this car and asked what I was doing on the track at the same time with him.
Maybe we should put a wing on our Volvo?
There’s not a whole lot to report other than the good news that I was able to continually improve my lap times, running three consecutive personal bests lap times in as many sessions. Still have not broken 2:50 but we're gettin' close!

We got pretty lucky in the last one – a 30 minute race -- because we wore the left front tire right to the cord on the pouter edge. A couple more laps and we might have been in big trouble. Doug Senk helped crew for us. We though we found and issue with some suspension when we got back to the shop but …
Uh, what's with that tire Doug?

The week following the race I spent a lot of time trying to figure out what happened. I took the front suspension apart and found nothing. Lower A-arm bushing (Delrin material) looked pristine.  I inspected every weld for cracks and found nothing.  So what caused this? May never know.
Crew Chief Dave Buettner was able to arrange for me to take the car to a Fox Valley Technical College instructor who does national seminars for alignment professionals. If the guru of gurus Mel Shampfer could not find an issue a suspension issue then it is likely that we had a tire issue, not a suspension issue. And that’s where we are.

Mel doing his thing.
The Hunter alignment system is pretty amazing and precise

Mel was really impressed with the build of the suspension. He spent four hours teaching me some of the finer points. We did a few minor adjustments.  We’ll see what happens in a few days.
I took the opportunity to replace the front rotors and all the brake pads. Every time I do something that I have not done before I get a learning experience. This time I discovered the need for modification of the rotors to accommodate the Wilwood hubs.

Looking forward to having Mr. Farrington back in the paddock this weekend. Our electronic data acquisition array needs him! (Nuff said!)
New graphic. Gotta keep the Sign Country boys in business! (Not to mention iRoll Motors)
Hoping to see you this weekend at America's speed park, Road America!

1 comment:

  1. New graphic looks great Jim! Hope your tire was an aberration.