Big thanks to Champcar and Harris Hill Raceway for putting on an incredible event last weekend. 47 cars and 1.8 miles made for some of the best racing I've had in a long time. There was never a dull moment as you were always in the thick of some action.
Team Unintended Acceleration in our red 1990 Audi 90 Quattro (5-cyl/20V) placed 8th on Saturday and 16th on Sunday.
Friday tech was very thorough, with Jay, Martin and John really pouring over the cars. They were scrutinizing the safety aspects of all cars and sending many back for updates. Seemed like the primary issue for most cars (ours included) was the firewall. We run a factory fuel tank in the trunk with sheet metal patch panels and metal tape to seal it away from the cockpit. But Jay sent us back to make it better because he could see some light when looking through the trunk. He required sheet metal and expanding foam (no metal tape!) before he would pass our car. We also had to install some additional roll bar padding.
Besides those 2 items, we were informed that before the next race we would have to:
- install an additional fuel tank vent routed our the back of the car (despite having all the OEM fuel venting system in place)
- install a "T" in the fuel lines in the engine bay so that they can check fuel capacity by pumping out at races later this year
While it was frustrating to have to make all these updates on a car that has always passed tech in the past....I was thankful that Jay was making sure all safety items were up to par.
Racing was frantic with more cars than ever on the track at once. It was really fun to battle it out with all the great competitors, including 17 Miata's, a couple BMW's, and lots of oddball stuff like 3 Audi's, a Dodge Shadow, Hyundai Accent, Dodge Neon, Ford Focus, 240sx. Our favorite part was that all 3 Audi's were virtually the same lap times so we could really trade positions with them all weekend. There seemed to be a little more aggressive driving and more contact than usual. We had a few small "touches" on the passenger side of the car but nothing serious.
Our car ran really well all weekend. Our only issues were a badly flat spotted tire near the end of the day Saturday and a failed voltage regulator on the alternator Sunday afternoon. Combined with a few missteps in the pits we lost a few positions. But I can say we were very pleased with the overall results.
Impound was exciting and thorough both days, with Jay asking teams to remove valve covers, hubs, etc....if there was suspicion of unaccounted for parts. For the teams "caught" with these parts, Jay made the call to add the points to the VPI in the moment. This didn't have an impact on the final standings. As you can imagine. there was some disagreement on if this approach was better than just disqualifying those teams. Either way, I was happy to see some real inspections facilitated by the Champcar staff. They indicated it would be even more strict as the year progresses.
I can't wait for the Fall event at Harris Hill. If you haven't made the trip down, you're missing out!