April 25, 2010

SCCA NER Second Points Event

Talk about a great event today! I would have to say that today was by far, my favorite SCCA event to date! Everyone was completely in-sync with each other, it flowed very quickly with next to no delays, we ran 4 heats with no problems and the course was actually long for once! Big ups to my co-driver Shane for doing awesome today and to Chris for letting us use his Go Hero camera again for some awesome footage!I came 1st place in SM today! Unfortunately it was not against the beast Nissan 240 as it had blown the engine last event, but it was against the same drivers never-the-less! Talk about an action packed day that I'll let all the video footage do the talking. PJ also took a run in my car for his final run due to "mechanical issues" with his Infiniti G35... Mechanical as in wanting to have some fun! Final raw time results are listed here, pax time results listed here, and the overall final results are listed here.Below the videos from the day are posted. First three are my afternoon runs, with the 3rd one being my fastest run of the day but plus one cone (and man I over cooked some turns!). The next three are my Co-Driver Shane's videos with his afternoon runs, with his last video being his fastest run of the day. Then one video of PJ taking my car out, in which was also his fastest of the day! I noticed he accelerates a lot more than I do, so that gives me more confidence for next event that I can push the car a bit harder, especially on my exits. Lastly is two videos of Gunner in his C Stock RX8. When I took a ride with him, I'm not used to body roll so much anymore that I actually got winded and almost lost my lunch!

April 24, 2010

Novice/Intermediate School

SCCA Held it's Novice/Intermediate school today. I had let Shane go out with the car instead (which I later found out they allowed duel driver, but oh well) as I took it last year and figured he would benefit from it more than I would. 50 cars could register only and it filled up fast! I stopped by to see how he was doing but I managed to stop by just when he was working. They had like last year, people split up into groups with instructors and they had various elements setup around the lot. After trying out the different elements, they combine them into a small course for the students. Seemed pretty good and Shane said he learned a lot, so we'll see how he holds up on Sunday!

April 21, 2010

Sparco Bag & Power Steering Update

Ordered a nice Sparco Bag that just came in today. Decided that grocery bags were no longer cutting it in terms of storage and carrying things to autocross events. Looks really nicely made with plenty of room for goodies, so I can't wait to try it out this weekend. Already packed up and ready to go to! For the price, the quality and the size, I would have to say this bag was certainly worth it. Big ups to Dan from Assaultech.
As for the power steering update, sadly it had taken Liberty Mazda a whole week to receive the harness from Mazda North America. Splice off the old one, solder in the new one and wrap is all they did. Upon inspecting the old one, it looks like radiator fluid from the overflow had managed to leak into the connector. Everything feels great right now, so we'll see what happens during this weekend's event and overtime. Stay tuned.

April 12, 2010

Liberty Mazda Visit - Power Steering Be Gone!

Decided to drop off the car early in the morning before work to get looked at. The front accessory socket malfunctioned on Sunday, and the never-ending power steering issues that seem to happen at all the right times. We'll have to see what they say about it all, but I have a feeling it is the only part that was not replaced; the wiring harness.

UPDATE: Got a phone call from the dealership that it is the wiring harness that is malfunctioning. Go figure, the cheapest and easiest part to replace was the cause of all the power steering issues, at least I'm just guessing. Will be picking the car up on Wednesday.

April 11, 2010

First Points Event With SCCA NER... Problems

Can it be Saturday again? Please? I think today was just not meant to happen at all really. A lot of power steering issues which had the power steering cutting in and out during the race, which left both me and Shane fighting to keep the car straight. The wind kept blowing over the timing equipment everywhere which caused major delays in the entire event, the starters were sending cars dangerously close together, Shane's numbers were apparently too small but no one mentioned it until after we finished our morning runs… yeah, it was a mess.We decided to leave early with these power steering issues and the fact that everything else had pretty much gone wrong. Course was pretty fast though, wide open. My fastest time was a '61 which placed me 4th in SM out of 8, only a few milliseconds behind 3rd place. Granted everyone else got their five runs, I would have to say I did pretty good for only getting three runs in. Here are some pictures to go with the event.
The final results here, pax time results here, and the final raw time results here.

April 10, 2010

Test & Tune And Novice School

Today was an absolute blast. Big ups to my Co-Driver Shane for the good times and helping me prep for the day, testing various tire pressures and just coming out and having fun. Big ups to Bill Gendron for the amazing alignment, and special big ups to Chris for letting me use his Go Hero Pro camera on some of my runs. Lastly, big ups to the NEPOC crew for coming out and taking awesome pics of me and the event, (that means you Josh!), sorry I did not have much time to talk and hang out. Overall, the day was a blast, and great practice for Sunday.Rob MacAlpine had set up two courses; one small course with various autocross elements on a single runway in the back (where we used to grid) for novices with instructors. Then there was a full course with no instructors for the veteran racers. The course was surprisingly fast for a Renegade Miata event, but had it's tricky moments that would catch people off guard if they weren't prepared for it. Average times for the day was between 1'13 to 1'16 for most racers. Shane scored a low 1'16 clean while I managed to pull two 1'10s for my best time. There was still some more time I could have shaved off out there, but I was more focused on getting out there and shaking off the cobwebs from the winter. Not much else to say as the pictures and videos will do most of the talking for me. Can't wait for tomorrows event, should be a good one!Almost forgot to mention! In the morning on the way to Devens, the power steering had failed on me sadly, but came back for the rest of the day luckily. Looks like I will need to take it to the dealership again. 3rd times always a charm as they say, right?
Videos are below. I don't have any editing software so Chris will be editing them for me sometime soon. In the meantime, here is the raw, unedited footage of 3 evening runs. 1st one is a 1'13, 2nd is my best run of 1'10.4 and the 3rd video is a 1'10.7 (where I made a poor mistake at the slalom! I could've easily gotten a 1'09 or 1'08 even!

April 9, 2010

Return From SFR

After a few weeks in the hands of master mechanic Bill Gendron of Small Fortune Racing, the car returns home. For starters, the fancy aluminum intake was wrapped in insulation to prevent the intake turning the cold air it draws in, into hot air. Looks like a dryer duct, but whatever gets the job done, right? For the feet of the bolt in rollbar, Bill had welded on what could only be best described as "support braces" onto the bar. This is supposed to help increase the rigidity up by 300%, as well as increase the safety of the rollbar as well.

Lastly, I got a full alignment along with a nice refreshed corner balance due to all the weight the car has lost recently. I'll be getting the specifications from Bill soon, as well as the weight of the car. I will also be dropping it back off at Bill's for my full exhaust setup in the near future, but more details on that when the time comes!Speaking of cold air earlier, I decided to see how my cooling setup is doing lately with my adjusted fan settings. At 86 degrees out, cruising on the highway in 6th gear, I was seeing coolant levels between 170-175. I'd say the car is ready for the weekend events, but I still feel that awkward "heavy" feeling when turning the wheel from time to time… reminds me of when I was losing the power steering before.