Marc's Public Blog - Cars


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Below is a recounting of various car events I've attended along the years, from car club meets, autocrosses, track events, and enthusiast drives.

Table of Content for cars:

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2004/10/22 Thunderhill again
π 2004-10-22 09:44 by Merlin in Cars

In a nutshell, the day couldn't have gone better. We narrowly escaped rain, my car was all ready for the track (new bushings, Tein shocks, fresh alignment and RA-1s), and despite a problem with my tranny (shifting from 2nd to 3rd gear when the car was hot) which forced me to take turn 11 in 3rd gear, I shaved about 5 seconds off my previous best time (now 2:13:7-8x). 5 seconds might not sound like much, but actually, it's a whole lot, especially the more you get under 2:30 at TH.

Needing new brake pads: $50
Needing new race compound tires soon: $500 for 4
Hearing "boy was that you in the white miata, you were damn fast" several times: priceless :)

What's interesting is that once again, I've shown that I can have a bout of performance (i.e. two great lap times), and then lack focus entirely, to the limit of day dreaming (went off track a bit once, and spun twice while staying on track).
Once, I just spun off turn 2 because I was pushing it a bit too much on my first lap and apparently my tires had cooled down a bit too much (this seems to have scared Matt off since he came up with a lame excuse why he wanted off the car :), and my off track in turn 1 was so bad, I don't even really know what I was doing, except that I obviously wasn't paying any attention at all since I don't really even remember what I did, if I came in hot, or not, whether I caught it a bit or not (I saw a video taken by someone behind me, and if it weren't for that, I still wouldn't know what I did). Mmmh....
My last spin (on my last session and lap of the day), was in 5, my first time ever. That one, well, I don't have to feel bad about it, I just screwed up: I tried a different line going in, and it just didn't work :) I kind of sucks how I've been constantly tired in the past two weeks, and have been struggling to stay alert and awake. Basically I was running on red bull and rock star during the day, and I could really tell when the previous one was wearing off...

Long story short, I am estatic about having dropped my lap time so much. I was running 2:15 on most my laps, some even included passing folks, and many also included very bad misshifts in 11 as my tranny/clutch just refused to shift back from 2nd to 3rd.
I had planned to play with the brand new lotus that was there, but I made the mistake to start in front of it instead of behind (i.e. the driver waved me by in the pits), and I never saw him again until we pitted at the end of the session :)
I also did some sweet passes in unusual turns (for me), like multiple passes between 2 and 3 by taking people on the inside of 2 at its exit, and I also passed several cars between 5 and 6.
Practise, more confidence, and better tires also helped me work up to close to 90mph exit speed in turn 1, and up to 92-95mph in turn 8, with does require a little faith :)

My "lap time" going to TH on wed night was 2:00:30 (doh, didn't make it under 2 hours. If it weren't for all those cops coming the other way on 5 and driving my V1 crazy...). On the way back I got a more respectable 1:51:45 (to 237 and Lawrence Expy exit, after that, well, it was street, so I slowed down :) The funny thing was that I found that I'm better off cruising between 110 and 120 tops as after that (130+), I have to be full boost, and well, my 12 gallon tank doesn't quite last the 160 miles required for the trip :)
It was kind of funny driving the way up glancing at both speed, RPMs, EGTs, core temp, trip distance left, and how fast the gas gauge was going down :)

Oh, did I mention that the lotus 2005 looks really sweet? :)


Pictures are here

2004/10/21 T.E.A.M. Track Event at Thunderhill
π 2004-10-21 00:00 by Merlin in Cars
In a nutshell, the day couldn't have gone better. We narrowly escaped rain, my car was all ready for the track (new bushings, Tein shocks, fresh alignment and RA-1s), and despite a problem with my tranny (shifting from 2nd to 3rd gear when the car was hot) which forced me to take turn 11 in 3rd gear, I shaved about 5 seconds off my previous best time (now 2:13:7-8x)
As always, thanks to Bonni from T.E.A.M. Racing for organizing this event.

The picts are here

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Well, my tires worked hard that day :)

2004/10/20 Ready for the track
π 2004-10-20 11:14 by Merlin in Cars

Current Music: Armin Van Buuren - A State of Trance - Episode 162
Current Mood: Good

After spending way too much time writing TPS reports (or something that seemed pretty close to it), I gave up and went home last night, so that I'm not too out of it tomorrow morning when I wake up around 06:30 in Willows for my track day at thunderhill (yeah! I can't wait)

As a quick shakeout after the recent work on my car (new bushings, shocks, racing pads, and brand new alignment), I used the fact that the road was mostly dry by the time I got to work this morning to try my 100mph run on the back stretch leading to our parking lot.
I actually didn't get a good start (low speed in the turn) due to the light not beeing green at the right time, and having to wait for an oncoming car before I could do my left turn, but yet, after flooring it, I reached 100mph a bit late, and was able to do really good braking and stop just in time for the left turn in the parking lot. I was really impressed by how sticky the tires were despite the road condition, and the heavy and consistent braking from the pads.
Tomorrow should be fun, I need to break 2:19 for my laptime, and I don't think that's going to be a problem :)
2004/10/16 Doc Wong's Driving Clinic
π 2004-10-16 00:00 by Merlin in Cars
I actually got my bushings and new shocks in just in time for the drive, so it was a great time to wear them in on bumpy roars. Unfortunately, the alignment guy from firestone didn't know toe in from toe out, and misaligned my car to have toe out (which can induce sudden snap oversteer). So, I had to take it reasonably easy (not counting a sliding sideways turn in gravel in a sharp U turn :-))
But then, the road started getting wet due to fog and condensation on trees causing drops, with the end result of the roads being uncertain, and all of us backing off, because it really wasn't worth taking risks (especially down Jamison road). While this made the entire drive a bit less fun, it was still a good outing, and definitely a good shakeout for my car.

The picts are here

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More pages: July 2017 June 2017 May 2017 April 2017 March 2017 December 2016 November 2016 October 2016 September 2016 July 2016 June 2016 April 2016 January 2016 December 2015 November 2015 October 2015 September 2015 June 2015 May 2015 April 2015 March 2015 February 2015 November 2014 September 2014 July 2014 June 2014 May 2014 April 2014 February 2014 November 2013 October 2013 September 2013 August 2013 June 2013 May 2013 April 2013 March 2013 February 2013 January 2013 December 2012 October 2012 August 2012 July 2012 June 2012 May 2012 April 2012 February 2012 January 2012 December 2011 November 2011 September 2011 July 2011 June 2011 April 2011 March 2011 October 2010 August 2010 July 2010 April 2010 February 2010 November 2009 October 2009 September 2009 June 2009 May 2009 April 2009 November 2008 May 2008 April 2008 December 2007 November 2007 October 2007 June 2007 April 2007 December 2006 November 2006 May 2006 January 2006 July 2005 May 2005 April 2005 January 2005 December 2004 October 2004 September 2004 August 2004 July 2004 June 2004 May 2004 February 2004 October 2003 May 2003 April 2003 March 2003 November 2002 October 2002 July 2002 May 2002 April 2002 March 2002 October 2001 September 2001 August 2001 July 2001 June 2001 May 2001 April 2001 March 2001 February 2001 December 2000 November 2000 October 2000 September 2000 August 2000 July 2000