November 20, 2011

SCCA Solo Updates

I hope everyone is enjoying the off-season. It's certainly a nice change of pace for once, giving me time to relax and catch up on other things. In the meantime, check out some of the changes going forth for this upcoming season.

October 28, 2011

Great Videos

I came across some really good videos recently that I thought I would share with everyone.

The first video is the new 2011 SCCA Solo Nationals music video by Speedway Motors. Every year they come out with a new music video with great footage of Solo Nationals. This year's was interesting, as it had some neat effects and two decent songs mashed together, but last year's video still sits on top in my mind. I definitely liked the buildup aspect of the music in the video though, as it sort of gave me the "fight for the title" feeling near the end. I also really liked how they included the announcer saying "Hold on to that top spot because it is easier to chase then it is to lead!"

October 23, 2011

Ruby's Big Debut!

Well, seeing as it was the last Renegade Miata event and I had taken first place for the year already via points, I wanted to focus on having fun this event. That being said, I decided to co-drive my STS Roadster (Ruby) with my girlfriend, Kristyn. I haven't had the chance to autocross the car yet, so what better opportunity to get a feel for how the setup is than this?

October 22, 2011

SCCA NER's Team Challenge

Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
The event everyone has been waiting for since the beginning of the year; SCCA NER's Team Challenge! A fun event in where you form a team and battle it out for the top. The rules are as follows:
  • Pick a team of 4
  • Choose a team name
  • Only 2 Moss Event competitors per team
  • The winning team from last year cannot form again
  • If there is not at least 3 cars per class, then your car gets bumped to the next class, just like at ProSolo events
  •  Which ever team has the most points collectively, wins!

    October 15, 2011

    Renegade Miata's 6th Points Event

    Renegade Miata Club's 6th points event was today. As usual, it featured a great technical course with a lot of good elements for practicing. Unfortunately,  the weather was spotty, ruining the afternoon for the most part. I decided to skip my afternoon runs in favor of changing tires in the dry before the big storm came.

    October 9, 2011

    SCCA NER Finale & Stirling Moss Runoff

    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    I won! I did it! I took 1st place for the year in B Street Prepared! Today was the season finale for SCCA NER, which is also the Stirling Moss Runoff. At the end of each year, each class winner battles it out for this special trophy.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    The way the Stirling Moss event works is like this:
    1. The normal points event is over after the first 3 morning runs (meaning if you are tied for 1st place for the year, you have only the first 3 morning runs to win)
    2. If you are a class winner or in the top 10 PAX points after those 3 runs, you are in the Moss. If you are not a class winner, you continue running your afternoon runs normally
    3. The fastest of your 3 morning runs is your dial-in time
    4. You now have to try to make your 3 afternoon runs as close to your dial-in time as possible
    The winner is then decided at the end of the event by whoever accumulated the most points. Points are given as follows:
    1. Half of your points come from your PAX (Leader's PAX time divided by your PAX time)
    2. The other half of your points come from the standard deviation between your fastest morning run and afternoon runs 1, 2, and 3

    October 5, 2011

    Dyno At Kaizen

    I had decided last week that I'd like to finally get a dyno chart of what the heck my car is doing and outputting. I never got the chance to get my last RX-8 to the dyno, nor did I get a baseline of Serenity before I began to modify her. That being said, it also made sense to get a dyno chart of my car before I install my header over the winter so I can compare the two. That's when I had Jeff (MazdaManiac) give my current tune another look-over, and then gave Scott at Kaizen Tuning a ring to schedule a dyno appointment with their tuner, Rob Baker.

    October 1, 2011

    Engine Issues Resolved

    I was chasing down a "gurgling/fluttering" noise at 8,000RPM for a little over a month recently. The noise was very noticeable and had gotten me very concerned, so I could simply not ignore it. After a lot of digging around and countless times of ripping things apart, I figured out what I was faced with. The interesting part of this however is that not only did I figure out the problem, I learned that I was chasing 3 separate problems. I thought I would share my findings with everyone, just incase someone should run into a similar issue.

    September 25, 2011

    Attack Of The Cones

    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    If I were to compare NER’s recent courses to this year’s previous courses, I would have to say they have become harder and harder (which makes me worried about the finale event coming up!). The sea of cones was intimidating to some of the novices that came out, but if you just focused on the cones that mattered most, you wouldn’t have a problem. Unfortunately, I focused too much on which cones mattered and not on my line, which was probably the intention behind the course design in the first place; misdirection.

    September 18, 2011

    Dodging Orange DISASTER!

    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    SCCA NER's 7th points event was today and it was unfortunately a disaster. The course was amazing (big ups to PJ for the setup), with many elements that were featured at this year's Solo Nationals event. My disaster was not with the course however, but it was actually in my car's transmission. 2nd gear had been grinding occasionally, but it was not often enough to have me worried this late into the season.

    September 10, 2011

    Godzilla's Visit

    Today was the 5th points event for the Renegade Miata club, however, I did not bring home any points in the "Other Mazdas" class. Instead, I ran in the "Non Mazdas" class with Kaizen Tuning's Nissan Skyline GT-R 35! This track monster is specifically setup for Lime Rock Park and Watkins Glenn, sporting some 295/19 front and 315/19 rear Hoosier R6 tires, Cobb suspension, 600 all-wheel horse power, and a lot of other modifications. The full list of Scott's build can be seen here on his shop's website. This thing was an absolute blast and it surprised me in it's overall performance on the autocross course.

    September 7, 2011

    Exhaust Install At Kaizen

    The long wait is finally over... For the most part at least. I finally was reunited with my exhaust system, except without the re-designed header. That won't be finalized until after the season is over unfortunately. In the meantime, I wanted to at least run the rest of the exhaust system. Looks like I'll have to pay a visit to my friends over at Kaizen Tuning.

    September 6, 2011

    Francesco's "Blueberry"

    Francesco is a friend of mine who is currently building up his RX-8 for NASA Time Trial (National Auto Sport Association). He had sent me some of these great pictures of his RX-8 taken by Bazooka Photography. The picture above was featured on Enkei's Facebook page as an advertisement for the Enkei RPF-1 wheels. These pictures were just too good to not turn into desktop wallpapers!

    I definitely enjoy the great angles and excellent backgrounds in the pictures, as it gives the pictures a Gran Turismo 5 "Picture Mode" feel to it. He is planning on having a bridge ported Renesis engine with some other great mods for next season, so keep an eye on his blog for more information on that. In the meantime, be sure to check out the desktops page for more desktop wallpapers of his car.

    August 28, 2011

    Whats New?

    A lot has been going on the past few weeks, so I'm glad I finally have some time to myself to kick back and relax. The main topics of whats new is in bold below. You will begin seeing more review posts, DIYs, and casual posts now that things are back under control.

    Blog Updates
    The blog has received many changes over the past few nights. Most of these updates I have been planning to implement for awhile. For starters, I decided to spruce up the fonts and colors used around the blog a little bit, while maintaining the same overall feel as before. Then, I cleaned up the side bar by getting rid of a few extra things and making everything easier to navigate. I also added some new pages to my blog that I think everyone will enjoy.

    August 20, 2011

    Switch It Up!

    With Serenity currently having some serious issues with the MAF sensor and ignition coils, I was almost unsure if I would be able to race today. Thanks to my friend Jordan, he offered me to co-drive with him for this event. In my pursuit of learning to become a faster driver, (both skill set and mindset), I graciously took his offer to co-drive his RX-8 today. I really do believe you can learn something new when you switch cars from time to time, so this was a great opportunity for me. Jordan's RX-8 is a black 2004 sport model that is mildly setup somewhere in-between STX and BSP, sporting these major modifications:
    • CorkSport Resonated Midpipe
    • Modified Mazdaspeed Intake
    • BHR Ignition Coils
    • Tein S-Tech Springs
    • Mazdaspeed Front Bumper
    • 18x9 +40 Enkei RP03 with 265/35 Toyo R1R Tires (We used my street wheels for the event)
    This was Jordan's and his girlfriend Domenique's first ever autocross. Domenique was going to have some fun driving her tastefully done Mazda 2. Be sure to check out Domenique's own blog, with plenty of great pictures. The course was done by Brian Levesque this time around, and was great with an interesting rhythm to it. The course definitely helped me focus on improving my lines (especially on where I should be aiming my car) and working on carrying more speed into some of the elements I have been trying to get better at. Even though I was not used to the car's body roll and handling characteristics, I managed to adapt quickly and learned to turn earlier than I normally would for turns.I managed to get down to a 1'15.1, but that was with 4 cones. After cleaning it up a little, I ended up with a 1'17.1. Jordan and Domenique did amazing for their first autocross, as Jordan finished with a 1'23.4 for the day, and Domenique took home a 1'31.8! The results are posted on the Renegade Miata website, along with the current year standings. Hopefully we will be seeing more of Jordan and Domenique at the local autocross events.

    At the moment, I have 4 weeks to figure out the issues with my car before the next race. Hopefully it is nothing too serious, but we will have to wait and see. In the meantime, below are videos of my fastest dirty run, my fastest clean run, Jordan's fastest run and then Domenique's fastest run. Thanks again for the co-drive Jordan! I enjoyed helping you two out, driving the car was great practice for me, and it was a blast to drive! Until the next update, stay tuned.

    August 14, 2011

    Scorched Orange

    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    BSP is becoming very interesting, but more so, what I'm learning and re-learning as a driver. This weekend was a great event, with a solid course that had elements I needed to work on and become faster at. Big Thanks to Hank for coming out with me on one of my runs and giving me some advice on the parts I was struggling with.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    For starters, I need to make my lines with more of an arch to them when approaching offsets (or clam shells). I'm doing too much of a" point and shoot" approach surprisingly. I also need to keep focusing on getting on the gas earlier, and staying on the gas through a turn, trusting the grip. Another issue is that I need to learn my braking zones a bit more and remind myself to stop over-braking (I've gotten a lot better, but still need work!). Lastly, I need to focus on learning the high speed sections of any course and figuring out the fastest way to take them, since those are sections I can easily lose to faster cars on.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    Those are all things I have to work on, but it only motivates me to work harder. My raw time could have been good enough for first place, but unfortunately I will have to settle for 3rd today. My fastest dirty run was a '58.3 and my fastest clean was a '59.9. The results are located here, and I have videos below of my fastest dirty run and then fastest clean run. The rest of my videos are located on my YouTube page, which I've redone a bit and have started organizing the videos in playlists.

    I wonder how many of these road blocks I'll be able to break and refine upon this year. Until then, stay tuned.

    August 7, 2011

    SCCA NER Jeff Gordon Challenge & Race Against Leukemia

    Saturday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway was the Jeff Gordon Challenge and our fundraiser pledge runs. I would like to thank everyone who donated to my fundraiser for the Race Against Leukemia. Thanks to the help from you all, I was able to raise up to $350. With that, I was able to take 35 fun runs out on the course.

    In the afternoon, I participated in the Jeff Gordon Challenge. The Jeff Gordon Challenge is a race in where you have 3 qualifying runs, and if you are in the top ten PAX times, you move on to the next round. From there, you go head on in an bracket elimination match, getting only one run to progress to the next round. I would have made qualifying but unfortunately all of my runs were coned, so I didn't get far. Needless to say, it was still fun and the seat time is still worth it.

    Sunday was the 5th points event and with a very different course this time around for NHMS. I managed to take first place in BSP, as it was a close match between everyone. I got to co-drive with PJ (which come to think of it, is ironic because he co-drove with me last year at the same event at NHMS). My fastest time was a '27.0 flat, and PJ's fastest time was a '26.2, showing me that the car could do more. Thanks for showing me that and all the tips PJ, and as always, you are welcome to co-drive with me anyday! The results for Sunday are posted here.

    I'd also like to give a big thanks to Ben for the hard work he put into my car with the new and amazing alignment. The car with r-compounds is VERY balanced and rotates the perfect amount. This allows me to simply focus on shock dampening and tire pressures for once! Thanks again Ben, everything is going great in that department.

    Below are two videos of my fastest runs from both days, followed by PJ's fastest run in the afternoon in my car. Stay tuned for next week, as it's already the 6th points event.

    July 30, 2011

    Renegade Miata Points Event 3

    It's so good to be back home with my "home club" (since Renegade Miata Club was my first ever autocross club). Today's course was great practice for me as it contained some elements I am currently struggling with. Over-braking and determining late/early apexes are my two biggest downfalls at the moment. Thanks to Bob and Bill for helping point out areas I could work on while I was out on the course.
    The car felt balanced on course due to the height adjustments I made to make the car more level, however, I could tell my alignment was off (and being on street tires doesn't help either). My turn in was not as quick as before, and I could feel it not be as settled in the corners. My fastest clean run was a 1'15. I had a faster dirty time of 1'14., and a clean fun run time of 1'13.7 however, and I know there was a lot more time to be had out there. The results of the day are located on the Renegade Miata website, here.
    Below is a video of my fastest dirty run and then my fastest clean run. I did not take any videos during fun runs so I could mostly just focus on practicing. I'm looking forward to next weekend at NHMS, I think it'll be a fun little get away. Until then, stay tuned.

    July 17, 2011


    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    This weekend was a back-to-back autocross weekend with SCCA NER. Saturday was a Novice/Intermediate school that Jenna had put together (Massive respect out to her for an amazing job!). I wanted to help out at the school this year and see how many novices had decided to try out the sport. The school featured elements from the years prior, which were:
    • Offsets (Clamshells)
    • Slaloms (with a increasing/decreasing radius slalom as well, depending on which side you start with)
    • Kidney Bean
    • Half course at the end of the day, that featured all of the elements learned at the school
    It was definitely a great turn-out and a lot of people really enjoyed the event. It's events like these that I think really help promote both the club and the motorsport, so great job Jenna!
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    As for Sunday, it was a normal points event. The course was setup by the chair of Renegade Miata, Rob MacAlpine, as well as the ST Civic boy-wonder, Roger Whipple. It featured a lot of slaloms, a tricky chicago box at the turn onto the taxi-way, and a few other interesting elements; an awesome course that I would have expected to see at Renegade Miata, not at NER.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    I had planned to use this event to test out my car with no rear swaybar to see how it would feel, as I kept getting recommendations from Ben to "GET THAT THING OUTTA' THERE!". With the rear swaybar out, I could go full throttle just as I'm ready to exit a corner without sliding, not something my driving style is accustomed to just yet (which may have cost me some time out there). I'll have to play more with the settings, but I have a feeling I may be sticking to no rear swaybar for the rest of the season.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    There were a lot more surprises than just the course however, as Hank Wallace returned to NER to crash the BSP party in his E36 M3. My fastest runs were a 60.2 and a 60.4, but both were dirty. My clean runs were unfortunately not fast enough to take over the lead from Hank, as he finished with a clean 60.3. Good to see him return and bring on a great race. The challenge he brought with him got me nervous to say the least, but that only motivates me to be faster for next time.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    In other highlights for the day, G-Fab gave Panda a nice paint job (be sure to check out their blog!), adding some flare to the SM monster while it reigns terror in the Pro class. Ben unfortunately had some problems with his STS Miata later in the afternoon, so I offered him to take his last runs in my car so that he could try and take the lead in Pro (and I could maybe learn something!). Down below you'll see some great footage of Ben attacking the course, beating my fastest raw time by almost 2 seconds! I did learn a lot from having him drive however, so thanks for that Ben.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    The results are posted here at the SCCA NER website. Overall, it looks like I'm currently 11th place in PAX for the year, and 1st place in BSP with 24 points, with Josh Noble right on my tail with 18. I am very surprised at my performance this year. Even though Serenity is an RX-8, she is completely different than my last one in every way. I'd like to keep working at it and score the jacket at the end of the year, but there are five more events left that could turn the tide. Until then, some minor work at Kaizen Tuning, as well as some aesthetic goodies, so stay tuned.

    July 9, 2011

    August 6th - Race Against Leukemia Fundraiser

    Coming up in August is SCCA NER's "Race Against Leukemia" fundraising event, and this year I will be participating! It is a two day event in where the three divisions of NER get together (road race, rally cross, solo) at New Hampshire Motor Speedway for a great cause and have some fun. On the first day, for every $10 someone raises, they get to have a run out on the autocross course. Then the rest of the day is various activities with everyone at NER.

    The next day is then a normal points event, and should be a great course! Please be sure to check out my fundraising page. Any donations are greatly appreciated, and I am looking forward to a great event. Stay tuned.

    June 26, 2011

    Engine Mounts Filled With Polyurethane

    Not many solutions seem to be out there for the RX-8 in terms of alternative engine mounts. The original 2004 to 2005 version was flawed in design as they didn't last long, forcing owners to replace them somewhere between every 30,000 to 50,000 miles. In 2006, the engine mounts were revised to be much more efficient and longer lasting.
    This DIY goes over how to take your engine mounts and turn them into some very nice and stiff engine mounts that you won't have to ever replace. We used Dave's engine mounts on his RX-8, which is the 2004 version, not the upgraded version. Be sure to check out this thread on RX-8 club with a nice writeup from Team RX8.

    Tools & Materials


    A couple of quick notes. This write-up assumes you already have the engine mounts removed from the car. Be sure to double check them for any cracks or leaks, because doing this to a damaged mount is not advisable. Also, the polyurethane takes 48 hours to cure, so be sure to do this when you won't need to use your car for a few days.

    1. Start by turning the mount upside down and removing the top rubber cover of the mount with the knife
    2. After you have removed the cover, be sure to empty out as much of the fluid as possible. The fluid smells and will stain your clothes pretty good, so be careful!
    3. At the center hole, you will notice a rubbery layer. Carefully cut that out with the knife, trying not to puncture all the way down and through the entire mount
    4. Skip this step if you have 2004-2005 engine mounts - The upgraded engine mounts have no circular opening, so you will need to drill in the center carefully and make your own circular opening in the center
    5. Once you have cut out and removed the rubber layer, you should see a honeycomb-like design inside the mount. Those pouches are what will be filled with polyurethane
    6. Now drill 6-8 holes around the middle hole in the engine mount with your drill. You will feel as you are drilling down, the drill going through 3 layers. The moment you feel the 3rd layer, pull back so you do not accidentally drill through the mount.
    7. Once you have made your holes, check them to be sure you drilled all the way through the hard brown layers and down to the black rubber surface. Use the canned air to clean out any excess shavings left by the drill
    8. Now fill the mount with your paint thinner and clean it out as much as possible. You can use water as a first pass, or go straight to the paint thinner, whatever you feel comfortable with
    9. Once it looks like all of the fluid has been cleaned out, use your blow dryer, on high setting, to dry out the inside of the mount. I held my mount upside down for about 5 minutes with the blow dryer pressed against it
    10. Once the mount is completely dry inside, prop both mounts on a flat surface, with support to ensure they don't accidentally get tipped over. Remember, these mounts will be sitting wherever you place them, for 48 hours
    11. Take your polyurethane base can and mix in ALL of the activator for 5 minutes. BE SURE TO DO THIS OUTSIDE as the warning says. I also thought their wooden stick was too small to stir, so I liked using a long wooden ruler instead
    12. Once you have mixed everything, begin by very slowly pouring it into the center of the engine mount. Pace the pouring slowly so that everything can settle nicely and the air can escape. Switch from mount to mount if need be as well
    13. After some time, you'll start to notice the polyurethane rise up from the center and the side holes. Keep filling slowly until you have a nice, flat, even surface at the top of the mount
    14. Once you're done pouring, you can take the ruler and run it slowly across the top of the mount so that you can ensure it's flat. Be sure to clean up any mess around the mount because it is bound to happen!
    15. After clean up, let it sit for 48 hours before placing back into your car!


    I noticed a huge difference right away when I drove my car, but then again, my passenger engine mount was collapsed previously. The throttle response was greatly increased to the point that it feels like the car is drive-by-cable. Less slop in the shifter as well I noticed, but definitely an interesting feeling being able to feel the power go to the rear tires more. Overall, it feels as though I had gotten a brand new engine put into my car, so I'm overly pleased with the results. I highly recommend this to everyone. It's very very affordable, a fun project, and easy to do with some patience! With the end result being that you will then have engine mounts that will never collapse, how could you say no? Happy Motoring!

    June 19, 2011

    STX VS. BSP & RMC 2nd Points Event

    Today was the 2nd points event for Renegade Miata! Dave is looking to get that 1st place jacket at the end of the year from SCCA just as bad as I am, so he decided to come out for some extra seat time. We decided to switch it up a little bit this event however. Thanks to Rob (chairman of the Renegade Miata Club), he allowed Dave and I to do a test in the morning. We were going to switch cars and compare the differences in our two cars with their current build, and how well we could adapt to them. This would be a great opportunity to focus on being smooth on the course while being in another RX-8 that is setup differently. In the afternoon, we then would switch back to our own cars and see if we could beat our times in the morning! This would really allow us to critique our own cars, as well as each others and consider making changes if need be. This is the first, in hopefully many more to come, "BSP VS. STX Battle"!
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    I decided that I will be running the rest of Renegade Miata on street tires so that my Hoosiers can stay as top notch as possible, (and to be fair for this test/battle). There are not too many differences between Dave's RX-8 and my own RX-8. The biggest differences would have to be that I have the BHR midpipe, flywheel, 4.777 rear end, very different spring rates (730 lb. and 450 lb. versus 503 lb. and 337 lb.), and 255/35 Dunlop Star Specs as opposed to 265/35 Yokohama Advan AD-08. The course was very tricky and had a very interesting rhythm to it, emphasizing heavily on being consistently smooth.
    Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
    The battle in the morning was interesting to say the least, where as I was enjoying Dave's car and putting down quick times, making only minor adjustments, and Dave was fighting with my car to keep it stable and put the power down when exiting the turns. I helped Dave by adjusting the shocks and playing with tire pressures, getting it down to full soft in the rear, 12 clicks from stiff in the front, and 29 PSI in the front with 30 PSI in the rear. A very different setup compared to when I run R compounds. Next event I think I may actually benefit with the rear swaybar removed, so I will try that out and see how it goes.

    My fastest run in the morning was a 1'21 clean, with Dave getting a 1'19 very dirty, and then a 1'22 as his fastest. In the afternoon when we switched back, I was much more at home, and so was Dave. I was able to get down to a 1'20 clean, but with a fastest of 1'19 dirty. Dave was right behind me with a 1'20. I think we both could've gone faster if we had more practice in our own cars in the morning, but I was happy with the overall test and am looking forward to the next SCCA NER race. As always, results for Renegade Miata are located here. Thanks Dave for the test, I had a lot of fun and am looking forward to our next swap or comparison battle. Below are our fastest runs in the morning and afternoon. Until then, I will be filling my motor mounts with polyurethane because it felt AMAZING in Dave's RX-8, so stay tuned!

    June 12, 2011

    Springtime Coneage

    NER's third points event today and what a blast it was (isn't racing always a blast?)! With my refreshed alignment (thanks to Kaizen Tuning), and flipped Hoosiers, I was ready to see what I could do. We even had a surprise visit from Alex of DSG! He came out to play today and test out his new launch control and make sure the car is running properly.
    The course seemed to be relatively simple, with a tricky turn-around at the beginning. If you over-cooked that turn, you would lose a lot of time trying to recover from it. Sometimes a simple course can be refreshing, and I'm sure it was laid out in such a fashion in case it would start raining again. B Street Prepared is becoming very interesting, and each race has truly been a battle for the first place. I took first with a 48.3' clean as my fastest run, and a 48.2' was my fastest dirty run. There was definitely more time out there, but I didn't want to get greedy, so I focused on being smooth and consistent instead. The results of the event are located here.
    As for the results of my alignment from Kaizen Tuning (which I can't thank enough again for fitting me into their schedule!), it was very solid and felt great. Getting more negative camber in the rear is going to be key I think however, so we're aiming to move the rear to -2.0 camber, with 0 toe, and then move the camber up in the front to possibly -2.7. In order to do all of this however, I needed to order brand new adjuster bolts, as after only 40 miles and one run on the autocross course, the adjuster bolt began to spin. Flipping the Hoosier's and bringing up the tire pressures felt great, so at least there is good news there. Hopefully my alignment won't be too far off from where I need it for next Sunday, but until then, stay tuned. Below are two videos of my fastest runs for the day.

    June 4, 2011

    Cars & Coffee With A Side Visit To Kaizen

    Photo by Josh Hanley - Josh Hanley Photography
    Early morning gathering at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum on a Saturday? Sure! I suppose I could manage that after pulling an "all nighter" installing my old rollbar for an RX-8 road racer from Pennsylvania, Francesco. Once there, I got to catch up with some friends for awhile, such as Josh (Altspace), Scott of Kaizen Tuning, Mike Lee and his beautiful M3, and others. What's always nice about the Coffee & Cars meets is that it's very casual.
    Photo by Michael Lee -
    Unlike many other gatherings I've attended, these gatherings are low-key, with some beautiful cars, tons of photography, cool enthusiasts, and ZERO tolerance for show-offs. That being said, there is never any fear in having the Police come to an event to start giving everyone a hard time because of someone ruining it for everyone. Much respect going out to Scott for letting me park next to him for some pictures by the castle. I know people have a lot more interest in his GT-R than my RX-8, but the two cars side by side came out beautiful in the shots, especially how well the vinyl work on my car popped out. Be sure to check out the pictures thread on YuppieRacing for more pictures of everyone that attended.
    Photo by Michael Lee -
    After hanging out for awhile, we all parted ways and I took a trip over to Kaizen Tuning to drop off Serenity for some work. After seeing the wear marks on the Hoosiers and discussing it with a few other racers last event, she is desperately in need of an alignment, having my Hoosiers flipped, and my street tires as well. Once I got to the shop, I got to speak with Malcolm, who is one of the coolest cats of the crew there at Kaizen. He is a very down-to-Earth kind of guy who you can talk to about anything. When it comes time to get down to business however, you are treated not just with respect, but professionally as a racer. If anything, he probably takes whatever motorsport you compete in just as seriously as you do; and I like that because it's hard to find that mentality these days.
    Photo by Josh Hanley - Josh Hanley Photography
    I'm looking forward to see the result of his work, especially to see how well she will perform on Sunday's race. Thanks again to Scott for helping me out when being in a time-crunch, and massive respect to Malcolm for taking on the task of dealing with my car and my overly particular needs. Once I get her back, I'll be filling the motor mounts with polyurethane, so look forward to updates on that, along with a nice DIY. Until then, stay tuned.
    Photo by Josh Hanley - Josh Hanley Photography