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La Familia

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    Selling homes for car enthusiasts

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  1. And just responding so that my Post Count can be at 100 before I ride off into the sunset... Adios to my fellow Chumps! Thank you for the competition, the camaraderie, and the community which we have shared for the past seven years! You have been worthy adversaries! Hope to see you on the racetrack with the Dawgs in the PacNW!
  2. For us, it comes down to integrity and honesty. We have been running with CC since the very beginning in Portland at the first, last, and only 24-hour PIR race. We ran the Fiat X1/9 for the entire inaugural race, only stopping to replace a broken throttle cable. And we won the Best Theme with our Mafia / La Familia theme where we gave out horse heads to most of the competitors. Including John Condren, who received a larger version during the restart after the dinner break. Fast forward seven years to Laguna Seca in 2015 on July 4th, when we were running our third car in the series, a BMW e28 535 and finishing fifth. There was a protest filed against another car for undeclared parts (rear strut mounts, ECU chip, etc), and the only penalty assessed was to reduce their finishing position by the number of laps equal to the value of the undeclared parts. Not the immediate bump to EC for the miscreant, as the CC rules clearly stated would happen in the case of undeclared parts. Interesting that the team in question later came down to our pits that evening asking if we had any spare rear upper strut mounts. Apparently their "hand fabricated" parts turned blue under the heat of a propane torch and were similar in appearance to the blue anodized coating on an aftermarket supplier who shall remain nameless. But since they had travelled halfway across the USA for the race, their explanations were considered more reliable than the images from the internet BMW vendor... Our collective team opinion was that if a series could not even enforce their own rules, then why would we even want to spend time, money, and effort to stay within their rules? We could instead spend our money and efforts on a series that will honestly and consistently enforce their rules such that everyone is on an even playing field. We decided then and there to never run another CC event, because they were unwilling to consistently follow their own rules. And it didn't matter how fast the Regional Director went in his private race cars, or how many other race events they were doing. If you cannot follow your own rules, why should I even consider playing in your sandbox? I can appreciate a "creative" interpretation of the rules, as any racer should. Thank you Richard Petty for that perspective. But when the rules are blatantly violated, and the sanctioning body refuses to enforce a clear mandate, I am done participating and promoting your series. For CC in the Western Region, the clock is ticking. Perhaps it will last longer in other regions. But in the West, we have already decided to run with another series where the rules are easily determined and followed.
  3. Update: Portland Cars and Coffee changed locations in May 2015 to the parking lot of the World of Speed museum in Wilsonville. What an amazing location for a weekly car event! http://www.portlandcarsandcoffee.com/ Yes, every Saturday morning, all year long, rain or shine or snow. 8am to 11am We now have a weekly Featured lot with 22 spaces for the cars that fit a specific theme. This theme changes every week, and may or may not be announced in advance. This theme might be "exotic" (default theme), or it may be "Red, White, and Blue cars" (July 4th) or "cars likely to overheat" (engines over 400ci). There are any additional 250+ parking spaces in the two parking lots along the side of the museum. All parking outside of the Featured lot is first come, first parked. Rumor has it that the theme on August 29 will be "Race Cars" That would be a great day to bring out your Chump Cars to put on display in the Featured lot. Now over eight years running (screwed up the previous math in the original post) in the Portland metro area.
  4. How does the cooling compare to school suit system? Have you tried both? I have not tried cooling suit systems, but the vest is more than fine for me. I wear a lightweight Stand 21 suit with additional Nomex because I would rather be hot than burn, and the cool vest does a fine job of keeping me comfortable. I like simple. Especially since I don't have to worry about a hole in my suit or a hose pigtail to connect once I am in the seat. Again, I like simple.
  5. We understood that TBR was protested on Friday as well, and the protest was disallowed because the protested items had been declared in the logbook. Like the claims for "homemade" delrin front bushings and rear shock upper mounts with an attractive blue anodized finish on the part, yet no value was given to the time necessary to create them as per rule We were told this later by the protesting team. " Any component that requires or practically requires the use of a lathe, end mill, CNC, plasma/laser cutter, tig welder, press brake, shear or other specialty high-dollar equipment will be valued at the fair market value of similar components sold by retailers or valued at the estimated time to fabricate, based on a machine shop hourly rate of $75 per hour. You can still make them yourselves and save actual money on your build, but you need to account for them at a reasonable value as if you’d bought them." We heard later that the Friday protest was thrown out as a Tech error rather than a Team error as the failure to account for the time needed to create the part should have been caught by Chump tech. Thus the $50 protest fee was returned to the team captain, even though the protest was not upheld. Makes me wonder if either of these items were included in the Sunday protest as well. I have never known anyone to create a delrin bushing or an aluminum shock mount without the use of a lathe or mill. And I have never anodized my homemade parts. Maybe spray paint if they are raw steel. When we looked over the TBR E30 in impound on Friday, we did note that the computer was mounted differently, flat against the firewall with the tabs hidden from view. And the rear shock upper mounts did appear blue to us in the afternoon light filtering through the access holes above them in the sheet metal. But these items did not concern us, as we had been fighting fuel starvation issues all day, and we were focused on getting our car out for Saturday morning instead. I will say that on Friday night an unidentified person came to us asking if we had any spare E30 upper rear shock hats. We said no, as we were running an E28. And I do think that if a cheater is only penalized for the value of the undeclared parts that are protested and confirmed at impound, then there is very little disincentive to cheat. You only get a slap on the wrist if you are found, and only with enough force equal to what is found. That is not what I have come to understand over the full six years that I have been running with ChumpCar since the first Portland race. It opens the barn door wide open for others who have not yet escaped into uncontrolled outside world. And it appears in stark contradiction to rule Sins of Omission to my uneducated eye. If my daughter were to be found cheating on only one question on a test, should she only have the one question deducted from her overall score? Does anyone think the principal would be calling me to say "she only cheated on one question that we know about, so don't worry about it. 99 of 100 is still perfectly acceptable."
  6. As a team, we decided to go with TechKewl vests instead of a cool suit system. Essentially a vest with four cold gel packs inside the driving suit. The cool vests freeze in about 30 minutes inside a drink cooler with ice, and last for a full 2-hour driving stint. Put them on inside your driving suit, and climb into the car without the hassle of connecting any cooling lines or having holes through the driving suit. Better yet, no worries about the space or weight of a cooler, nor the mess of having to refill it throughout the race. The gel packets are non-toxic, non-flammable, and certified for military use. http://www.techniche-intl.com/catalogus/techkewl-cooling-vest.html Vests are around $160 on Amazon, although occasionally you find them on sale for $120. We bought three vests, and just rotate them between drivers. Simple and no hassle.
  7. This was a terrible incident, and we have had plenty of time to debrief with the driver as we have driven back to Portland. First to both teams involved, as the Team Captain, I am sincerely sorry for this incident. Racing or not, good decisions or bad, it impacted both of your weekends at an amazing track. And for that our entire team is sorry. Come to Portland and the beer and bbq is on us. Then let's chat about how we can continue to rebuild bridges. There is a connection between Las Vegas and this race, interestingly enough. At Vegas (our last race) we were hit by a white Miata, after which our car began to understeer badly. It was after this that the car had many of the trips into the dirt at Vegas. We replaced some suspension components, and it seemed better. Over the winter, we added a fuel cell to the car, going from a fuel tank in the right rear to a transverse fuel cell. The dynamics of the handling also changed as the fuel would shift during cornering. It worked fine during a test day in Portland, so we headed to Monterey thinking everything was fine. On Friday, we spent maybe 2.5 hours on the track, and the rest of the time sorting out a fuel starvation ghost. By the evening, we had found a solution the fuel AND we found a cracked mount for the steering rack which was welded up. Saturday morning one of our regular drivers went out, and the car was again fast and handled as well as before Vegas. When we did our driver change, we were up to fifth or sixth position (I believe). Then we did a driver change to a replacement driver in the car. He is a Pro3 driver, and thus no stranger to BMWs or road racing. However he was not familiar with a fuel cell slosh, and he was fighting it for much of his time. This was his first time racing with us in this car. Then came turn 11. According to the driver, after going into the dirt, he tried to countersteer when coming back on track, then went both feet in to avoid hitting Bue Bayou as they stayed left. You can see the driver front wheel lock up in the video. When he came to a stop, he was perpendicular to the track with full driver side exposure at the back of the dust cloud. Worried about his safety, he restarted the car and accelerated to move to the wall, but the tires were covered in dirt and the car came around on him on the dirty track. And that is when the Neon made contact with the spinning car. At the same time, I was on the radio yelling "no no no" to him while Chris was running from Pit In waving his arms. To no avail. What we also noticed in the video was the lack of a yellow flag at the T11 station. on the Neon video. Not putting any blame on the corner workers, but this demonstrates all the more reason for our driver to have gotten out of the way for his own safety. The Neon would have hit him square on the driver door at full speed in the dust cloud had our driver not restarted the car and moved somewhere else. Again, our sincere apologies to everyone involved, and we are grateful that no one was injured in this serious incident. No excuses either for the action of our driver to have spun on the track, it was a crappy combination of circumstances and instant decisions that did not play out as planned.
  8. Chris, it has been awesome to watch you move up the ladder within Chump Car for your duties and responsibilities. Your realistic and practical approach to technical challenges has been greatly appreciated by many, perhaps including those who have found ample ways to bend the rules to their advantage. Looking forward to seeing you in your new duties, as well as around the paddock on race weekends!
  9. If you are in Portland at the PIR Swap Meet looking for cheap race car parts, come join me at a happy hour party on Saturday night afterwards. Let's bench race and talk about the upcoming Chump Car races. There is always time on Sunday to prep your car for the following weekend in Seattle. Come drink with us instead! Saturday April 11th, 6pm-8pm Raccoon Lodge in Beaverton Sponsored by me (Portland Homes For Cars .com) and Russ at RaceTech. If you are one of the first 50 to RSVP, then I will buy your first drink and a round of appetizers. http://pnwracers.eventbrite.com Hope to see you there!
  10. Of course, there is always the "after party" for Saturday night. This year it will be at the Raccoon Lodge in Beaverton. It will be a chance for anyone interested in bench racing to go drink without stuffing your cup down in your jacket or pocket. (Swap Meet security still have to look like they are working when they visit us) Saturday April 11th, 6pm-8pm Sponsored by me (Portland Homes For Cars .com) and Russ at RaceTech. I'll buy appetizers and the first round of drinks for the first 50 people RSVP's by April 4th. http://pnwracers.eventbrite.com
  11. Once again, Chump Car will have a booth at PIR Swap Meet in Portland, Oregon. Thursday April 9 through Saturday April 11, 8am-5pm Think this is the fifth or sixth year we have done this. We've lost count after all the cigars, booze, and inhaled solvents. Our purpose is to raise awareness of ChumpCar in the PacNW, and promote the race schedule. No, we are not building another car in one week as we have tried previously. Not enough electricity for Russ' welder. But there will likely be a rolling chassis for you to buy and make into another ChumpCar. Swap meet discounts may apply. Enter through the front gate, second booth on your right. Look for the stack of crapcan parts and junk surrounding a ChumpCar or two. There will be canopies, because this is April in Oregon. And it's going to rain. It always rains for Swap Meet. It's Oregon...duh! We will have extra chairs to lounge in. We will have the Fiat x1/4.5 Italian tri-color BBQ with chili or pasta around lunchtime. And there will be cups for whatever beverage you choose to bring with you for the after hours "bench racing" session.
  12. Ok, guess I'm a Chump at uploading images. I have pictures of each tire individually, but they are too large to upload together. If you want larger images, contact me and I will email them to you.
  13. Just like the title says, selling four Dunlop Direzza II take offs Four 225/50-16 used tires They were new for the Portland race this August, so two 8-hour heat cycles in them. We just don't need 12 tires in the trailer, so we want to make this pair available to another team that may use them before the end of the season. $100 obo Located in Portland. Pick them up next Saturday at the Fall Swap Meet at PIR, or pick them up at the Chump race in Portland the following weekend. Call me if interested, I can email larger files than attached here. Mark 503-703-0618
  14. From what I remember while hanging out at Tech on Thursday, the #195 Miata had disclosed the engine swap, the coolant reroute, and one more item (darned memory!) for a TCV of $407. Using your values for the additional non-disclosed items, $407 TCV +100 non-OE induction (1.6L with Flyin' Miata adaptor) +100 non-OE Bilsteins (the only SM-legal are Front Bilstein 0000-04-5225-BL, Rear Bilstein 0000-04-5226-BL. Both should be Value Add for Chumpcar) +80 non-OE springs +40 non-OE top hats +20 oil cooler +10 brake duct material --------- $750 TCV $250 worth of penalty laps
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