Saturday, 31 May 2008

All set for another sprint

23/05/2008, originally uploaded by kevham.

The car developed a nasty clunk from the suspension after Kames last week. so I decided to spend a few hours trying to track it down.

Turns out it was a loose ARB droplink which I must have failed to tighten properly. On inspection, it looks like the droplinks are all shot so I'll be ordering some replacements to be fitted before Barbon on 14 June.

I've got the new Toyo T1-Rs on now and I have to say they feel a wee bit vague on the road but they do seem quite sticky. I'm quite keen to try these tyres in a lower profile and am considering 195/45 14 size which would improve the gearing for tighter circuits like Kames.

Anyway, wether forecast for tomorrow is good so I'm looking to beat the magic 100 secs although I'm wondering if removing the K&N Typhoon kit has lost me a bit of horsepower?????

Sunday, 25 May 2008

Kames Sprint Round 2

25/05/2008, originally uploaded by kevham.

Sunday started with a trip back to Kames in the Skoda as we had left the Racing Five at the track overnight. The early start did not agree with the whole family though - wee James got a bit car-sick and chundered up his breakfast banana on the way to Muirkirk. After a quick clean up operation, we were soon there.

The sprint was organised by the Machars car club who are so laid back they are horizontal. The consequence of this was that we didn't start until after 10.30am (despite there being no need for major scrutineering).

The car felt ok on the first practice. I got a very poor start and took it nice and easy to settle back into having the stock roll bars - the last time I was clockwise at Kames I had Toyo 888s and stiff roll bars! My first run clocked 104secs.

Second run I got a better start but missed 3rd gear going down through "Gemmell's" and was well off the limit on the paddock bend. I managed 102.10secs - 2 secs off my personal best of 100.25secs set in April.

First time run and I decided to crank the shockers up to 10 clicks front and 11 clicks rear. The car was less settled this time and certainly seemed a bit twitchy - I managed 102.94secs.

Final run and I soften the dampers slightly. This time I got another poor start but went much quicker round paddock - on one lap, I managed to get a bit sideways! Unfortunately, this is not the quickest way round a track so i only managed 101.89secs - over 1.5secs slower than I've been.

The car feels more neutral with the standard anti-roll bars on - I was able to control the slides with plenty of warning and there was not a hint of understeer this weekend.

I think my tyres are past their best - there's a big flat spot on the front passenger tyre and they are starting to crack a bit so they need to be replaced before next weekend's Wigton Sprint back at Kames.

Saturday, 24 May 2008

Kames sprint - 24 May 2008

24/05/2008, originally uploaded by kevham.

Well day 1 is over and it was a bit strange. The weather was fine (if a touch windy) but I was a bit out of sorts as I had done my back in fitting the stock ARBs on Friday.

It was also my first time going anti-clockwise at Kames and it is a completely different track in that direction.

The morning got off to lousy start as there was a shortage of marshals, meaning some drivers had to help out and only 1 car on track at a time - things dragged a bit!

I managed 99 secs on my first run which seemed very slow in comparison to others. The car felt very skittish and I had a big lock-up coming into the hairpin. I decided to lower the tyre pressures a bit.

Second run I managed 95.63 secs and I thought there was a bit more to come as I made another big mistake at the hairpin. However, third run I only managed 95.17secs.

Then there was a big delay as there was a whole sump load of oild dumped on the track and much effort was required to clean it up.

Final run came round and i managed 95.04secs. Last in class (by a long way) and one of the slowest overall. Nevermind. It sets a benchmark for my next outing going 'the wrong way round'..........

Friday, 23 May 2008

ARBs fitted

23/05/2008, originally uploaded by kevham.

This morning I spent a couple of hours fitting the standard ARBs back on the car. Word on the street is that this should fix the understeer problems I've experienced since fitting the P5 Puredrive coilovers.

I'm all ready for the weekend's sprinting at Kames. Weather forecast is good and I'm hoping to beat 100secs on the clockwise circuit on Sunday.

Watch this space........

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

2008 season beginnings

As I write this, I've already spent a winter preparing the car with new suspension from Performance5

The kit included new adjustable height shocks and stiffer springs.

Fitting the kit proved to be a traumatic experience, resulting in snapped bolts, much head scratching, excessive use of a blowtorch and expensive repairs.

Anyway, after a mad rush I had the car corner weighted and aligned at Dreadnought in Callander and I was ready for the first event at Kames. I was lucky enough to secure some support from the and they turned out in numbers to support me at my first event.

That has since been followed by a hillclimb at Forrestburn where I managed to nearly end up in a lake and subsequent sprints at East Fortune and Teesside.

I still haven't won any awards but at least I'm not always coming last now (unlike last year!).

I've made some adjustments to the suspension set-up as the anti-roll bars seemed too stiff with the new springs so I'll be running the standard ARBs again.

This weekend sees a double header at Kames so I'll post a full report and pictures after that.