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:

More pages: September 2017 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



2013/08/22 Fourth Droid and Friends of the year at Thunderhill, and Brake Toasting #2
π 2013-08-22 00:00 in Cars
Mc Laren worked on upgrading my steel braking system since last time, and one of their staff who happened to be professional racer back in the day, came with me to see whether I was mistreating and/or overdriving the car, or whether the brakes really couldn't hold up at thunderhill.
To be honest, I wasn't sure whether I had done something wrong last time, I wondered whether when doing left foot braking I had been holding the brake by mistake, or something else. On our first session out (no left foot braking), I drove reasonably hard since it was still cool, just to see how the brakes would do with the new slots and cooling, but after just 5-6 laps, I found out that they were overheating again (pedal firm, but felt like wood). With pretty much no warning, just before 14, I got almost no stopping out of them, and got too close to a friend of mine and his car.
After getting over the "that was a bit too close of comfort, and apologizing to my fellow driver", I had a chat with my instructor and he agreed that I didn't do anything obviously wrong, he commented that I was faster than what he had expected, and that the brakes just couldn't take the heat. It was really annoying because effectively the brakes did worse than last time when they only started giving out in the afternoon :(

I did consider going straight home at that point, but he kind of half convinced me that it may not have been worth throwing he day away just over that and that I could just brake earlier, so I elected to do that. The people I gave rides to sure didn't seem to mind :)
One of my first laps in the morning gave a 2:01, which was encouraging since I wasn't fully in the zone yet, and I typically shave time off after a few sessions when I do a better job driving consistently, but obviously with the brake issues, I didn't get anywhere close to that, and dialed it way down to a 2:06-ish on most laps (with the bypass in 5).

In the afternoon, I had considered doing one last session and heading back since I knew hotter temps were just going to make things worse, and while I could have stayed the rest of the day just to give laps to people, I didn't want to push my luck. But eh, just as I was discussing this with my passenger while doing laps, and being quite careful keeping track of the feedback from my brake pedal, braking earlier, and making sure not to tailgate anyone in the section of the track that is punishing to my brakes, they turned to wood again with pretty much no warning and I overran 14, and barely stopped the car before getting to dirt.

Nothing bad happened, by then I was being quite careful anyway, but clearly it confirmed that I should never have taken the steel brakes for that, and opted for the Ceramic brakes instead. Staying longer gave us useful temp data, including the fact that the calipers were not overheating until that last session, whereas the pads definitely were. This means that it wouldn't be an easy fix of just changing pads and that the system was too small to handle the heat. So my car is going back to the dealership for a CCM upgrade now.

Attila's new ride, I'll have to worry about him when he learns to drive it :)
Attila's new ride, I'll have to worry about him when he learns to drive it :)

Dave and my Stuart, instructor for the day
Dave and my Stuart, instructor for the day

Great R8, Martin should kick ass with it once he learns to be faster in it
Great R8, Martin should kick ass with it once he learns to be faster in it


Attila told us about the new DnF merlin point system over lunch:

And the last bit of the last lap:

Grr, they said they filled my tires with nitrogen. That sure looks like air to me
Grr, they said they filled my tires with nitrogen. That sure looks like air to me

Dito took more nice pictures of us:

Martin seemed to be having a good time
Martin seemed to be having a good time



You can see the heat in the background
You can see the heat in the background

2013/08/11 GoKart Racer for Xav's Bachelor's Party
π 2013-08-11 00:00 in Cars
Frank took a few of us to GoKart Racer because I think Xav was not allowed to have a stripper party :)

It was all good for me, I hadn't gone karting in forever, and I'm not that good at it compared to track driving, so I definitely need more practise. We signed up for a practise session and then a race with qualifying on the supertrack.




In the end, I did well, arguably too well (I finished with a 29 second lead on our best 2nd) and somehow did a better time with people blocking the track than I did during practise laps earlier. While I know I was doing better the 2nd time around, there may also be a chance that my kart may have been a bit faster.
That said, all of us did great during the race, and passed the other people they threw on the track as rolling roadblocks. It was much fun to have the challenge of passing them.

For fun bits, either click on youtube to get the video full screen with comments and time offsets, or here they are:

  • 5:00 Passed #4
  • 6:40 Passed 43, 31, 30
  • 9:00 Passed ?
  • 10:50 Passed #4
  • 11:45 Passed #30 after he rammed me twice instead of letting me pass (thanks)
  • 12:20 Passed #31
  • 14:50 Passed #4 for the 3rd time!
  • 15:15 Passing #43 and some unknown person spun on the left (43 threw me into a corner though, I got lucky to get out. I should have anticipated that and waited a bit farther back to pass him at a safer place for me)
  • 16:30 I was about to pass Yoshi (#?) but got yellow flagged to get out since my race was finished.

  • More pages: September 2017 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