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The Sebring 14 Hour


Aleru
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I can't stress this enough.  PAY ATTENTION IN THE DRIVERS MEETING.  Dana did a great job but apparently either teams didn't attend or were too busy not paying attention.  I can't tell you how many times i yelled at people for driving cars the wrong way in the backside of pitlane, along with drivers thinking that they are the pace car.  Under full course yellow; I was flashing one driver telling him to go faster, he pulled to the side of the track and almost stopped and kept pointing me by.   Another driver refused to go faster than 35mph around the track and we lost 45 seconds to the car in front of us for position.  

Edited by MoparBoyy
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7 minutes ago, MoparBoyy said:

I can't stress this enough.  PAY ATTENTION IN THE DRIVERS MEETING.  Dana did a great job but apparently either teams didn't attend or were too busy not paying attention.  I can't tell you how many times i yelled at people for driving cars the wrong way in the backside of pitlane along with drivers thinking that they are the pace car.  I was flashing one driver telling him to go faster, he pulled to the side of the track and almost stopped and kept pointing me by.   Another driver refused to go faster than 35mph around the track and we lost 45 seconds to the car in front of us for position.  

You serious?? 35 mph on green flag??? How could you not get around them??

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15 minutes ago, 67Mustang said:

You serious?? 35 mph on green flag??? How could you not get around them??

 

did you not understand that this was a second pace car?  aka; under full course yellow. 

*edited first post to be more clear that this was under FCY

Edited by MoparBoyy
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Had a txt asking what was up

For anyone curious about the the broken balljoint vid:

 

I will name the whole incident:     Stuff happens in a straight line....

 

(hope I have the 225, 107 and 108 not mixed, not only that my quote button wont quote)

 

Running sub 2.40 laps, swapping places with both KSR for 40+min, it seemed normal to form small groups of fast cars, suddenly the 107 and 108 appear, I know it will be a brief encounter, but not what anyone expected,as this was a 4-5 car pack, it took several hours to figure out. Fortunately I was able to find every driver and watch vids from both the 107 and 108 (and later from my car)

 

First I speak to the 107 with the broken Ball joint, he reported jacking the brakes to avoid me, we watch video from his viewpoint, sure enough I sort of brake check him but nothing showing more then him going off, said the RF suspension failed sending him, I reply that the 108 slowed abruptly on the straight and caught me off guard, the 108 replied oh yeah I remember that, the 225 cut over suddenly, I ask for his video, sure enough the 225 suddenly dropped off pace and over a lane.

 

Off too Kevin's pit, it was a simple answer, something that had never happened before.   I find the drivers of both the SC300 and choptop, knowing he was unaware what was going on 4 cars back, I ask what happened right before tuttle caution, he reports having a good time working traffic with me then admits surprise that one of the the kill switches got hit on a shift causing him to suddenly drop off pace(and apparently take a lane)  it was quickly fixed but not before bunching us all up.

From the conversation afterward, even though this was a one off situation, it is possible the switches might get moved before the next event, unfortunately I forgot to look after the race.

 

Congrats to all the others on the podium, it was a hot, long green day.

Edited by Team Infiniti
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Infiniti - thanks for the summary of that.  We saw the tuttle car come in and guessed front end failure, but didn't realize there was a whole nother mess wrapped up in that!

 

Speaking of infiniti, I should have some good video of you guys doing a grass drift around the hairpin and nearly losing in when merging back onto the track.  I kept trying to figure out where to go but y'all got in under control before it spun.  Was a clencher moment!

 

Should have a good shot of KSR going WAY wide out of turn 5; must've just overcooked it there because I don't think anyone else was around!

 

Had some interesting braking action into the hairpin that resulted in some BMW spinning behind me.  Not really sure what happened there but I do appreciate the guy not hitting me!  Won't be on video though.

 

I had a fun back and forth with the 890 BMW for a few laps there - I think he got passed me in turn 16, I caught him in 17 and got to his inside in turn 1, he caught me again a lap later.  I follwed him for a few laps before he lost power and pulled off to the side, but definitely was having fun!  Followed a white miata for what felt like 10 laps until my CV died.  Found a new dent in the driver's side front fender but no idea how it got there.  Not even sure it was me!

 

Had one of the mostly-stock looking Miatas lock their brakes right next to my driver window going into turn 10, I think?  Scared the crap out of me!

 

Everyone on our team picked up 3 seconds over their last year's best time, except me - I only gained 2.5 seconds.  So nice to see the car getting progressively faster as we learn to drive it better.  No one on our team had a bad thing to say about our current setup, except that it's still not reliable enough.

 

We got smacked by the 66 mustang going into one corner, but they came by to chat about it - we definitely appreciated that!  Simple case of thinking there was more space there than there actually was, and neither car took any damage.

 

The bad: Fuel pump died around 12 and the new pump had different sized fittings on it (damnit), so a run to home depot fixed that.  Ran out of fuel on pit lane around 130 - thanks to those who pushed our car out of the middle of the road!  Bald spotted a front tire around 2, then realized the brake pads were almost gone, so we replaced them.  Back around at 3, blew apart the passenger CV just before 4.  Back out at five and snapped a shifter cable at 5:15.  I didn't bring a spare one of the those =(

 

Videos to come.

Edited by krispykritter
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I have to give a shout out to the Inactiv Motorsports team for allowing me to rent a stint for my first ChampCar race.   After years of circle track NASCAR racing, Sebring was on my bucket list and I had a great time.  Sean & Matt and all the other guys (Jim, Lyndon, Garick, Shelby1 & 2, other names were a blurr with all the excitement) treated me with respect and never failed to answer questions or give hints.  The car was prepared well and drove steadily the entire stint, allowing me to log consistent lap times.  Two of three goals were met:  1) don't wreck the car; 2) finish my stint with respectable showing; and 3) break into the two's (although I did not break into the two's, I did manage a 3:03 - significant that I was a first timer in the car and on the bumpy track WITHOUT any laps or practice.)  The hospitality suite was a giant plus.  Kudos guys and here's hoping that we can do it again.

 

Kudos also to RaceSuitRental.com for providing quality gear package at a great price in a timely manner.

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We had a good time and some good wheel to wheel racing.  Looks like we were able to start chipping away at our lap times.  Last Sept we had a 2:43, then in Dec we had 2:40 and now 2:36 this weekend.  It’s finally shaping up to be a competitive car (well kind of…).  There are two major issues, fuel mileage (we haven’t made it to 2hrs yet) and reliability. We had a clutch issue again (air in the hydraulic system). 

 

Outside from the clutch issue that sidelined us we all had fun.  My second stent was a blast, for a few laps we had a group of fast cars working out way through traffic, then I hooked up with the Momo Miata and we had some real good back and forth for quite a few laps. 

 

Back to the shop now to figure out what the hell is happening to clutch.  We replaced all the components before this race (master cylinder, hoses, slave cylinder, etc…) and had the same failure we had in April at Daytona.

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46 minutes ago, krispykritter said:

Infiniti - thanks for the summary of that.  We saw the tuttle car come in and guessed front end failure, but didn't realize there was a whole nother mess wrapped up in that!

 

Speaking of infiniti, I should have some good video of you guys doing a grass drift around the hairpin and nearly losing in when merging back onto the track.  I kept trying to figure out where to go but y'all got in under control before it spun.  Was a clencher moment!

 

Should have a good shot of KSR going WAY wide out of turn 5; must've just overcooked it there because I don't think anyone else was around!

 

Had some interesting braking action into the hairpin that resulted in some BMW spinning behind me.  Not really sure what happened there but I do appreciate the guy not hitting me!  Won't be on video though.

 

I had a fun back and forth with the 890 BMW for a few laps there - I think he got passed me in turn 16, I caught him in 17 and got to his inside in turn 1, he caught me again a lap later.  I follwed him for a few laps before he lost power and pulled off to the side, but definitely was having fun!  Followed at white miata for what felt like 10 laps until my CV died.  Found a new dent in the driver's side front fender but no idea how it got there.  Not even sure it was me!

 

Had one of the mostly-stock looking Miatas lock their brakes right next to my driver window going into turn 10, I think?  Scared the crap out of me!

 

Everyone on our team picked up 3 seconds over their last year's best time, except me - I only gained 2.5 seconds.  So nice to see the car getting progressively faster as we learn to drive it better.  No one on our team had a bad thing to say about our current setup, except that it's still not reliable enough.

 

We got smacked by the 66 mustang going into one corner, but they came by to chat about it - we definitely appreciated that!  Simple case of thinking there was more space there than there actually was, and neither car took any damage.

 

The bad: Fuel pump died around 12 and the new pump had different sized fittings on it (damnit), so a run to home depot fixed that.  Ran out of fuel on pit lane around 130 - thanks to those who pushed our car out of the middle of the road!  Bald spotted a front tire around 2, then realized the brake pads were almost gone, so we replaced them.  Back around at 3, blew apart the passenger CV just before 4.  Back out at five and snapped a shifter cable at 5:15.  I didn't bring a spare one of the those =(

 

Videos to come.

Driver’s side fender was most likely from RBR contact with your car around 3-4pm. Happened in turn 13 when I passed on the outside and we met at the turn-in point (Cone). You may have been in the car when I came and found your pit stall. Talked to the driver and we both chalked it up to racing incident and shook hands. We broke a wheel. I learned how to get through the infield on the way to the paddock as I thought we were done with a broken trailing arm. Wasn’t my only trip through the infield. Car lost the clutch with an hour left after 4th gear gave up the ghost with 2 hours left.

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2 hours ago, jakks said:

Driver’s side fender was most likely from RBR contact with your car around 3-4pm. Happened in turn 13 when I passed on the outside and we met at the turn-in point (Cone). You may have been in the car when I came and found your pit stall. Talked to the driver and we both chalked it up to racing incident and shook hands. We broke a wheel. I learned how to get through the infield on the way to the paddock as I thought we were done with a broken trailing arm. Wasn’t my only trip through the infield. Car lost the clutch with an hour left after 4th gear gave up the ghost with 2 hours left.

 

Ha!  We may have gotten our incidents crossed up then.  I was in the car getting new brakes in the garage when someone came by but one of my drivers spoke with him.  It sounds like the incident that my other driver had was with the 66 mustang and thought you guys were from that team.  If this happened between 3 and 4 it was mostly likely me driving - sorry for not speaking to y'all about it, I definitely didn't notice the contact!  I'll look back through the video once we have it all downloaded and find the incident and post it up here.  I'm guessing I hit your rear quarter then?

 

I need to apologize - I'm not sure how I didn't notice the contact but certainly feel bad it took you guys off track and cost you a wheel.  I'm not sure if I'm at fault but I feel like it's likely I could have probably have done more to avoid it.  Going to have to see if the guy with all the video footage can find it sooner rather than later =(

Edited by krispykritter
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  • Technical Advisory Committee

I've got to write to give a big, thankful "shout out" to Ed from @Team Infiniti and @pintodave with the Cage Gage Camaro, along with their entire teams.

A prospective newcomer to the series has been PM'ing with me recently, since he's also building a Focus. I gave him the typical advice to go to a nearby race and either volunteer, or hook up with a few of the teams to pick their brains, help out, or just observe. Stephen (new forum member @SC_Racing) told me he and his team/family planned to go to Sebring to do just that.

 

Even before touching base with Ed and Dave, I pointed Stephen in their direction. Both guys graciously wrote me back and said "Send him our way."

The note I received on Saturday night sounded like a guy that was elated with the experience!!

Here's a couple excerpts from the note I got:

 

"I'm hooked! We met Ed after his first track session. What a wealth of knowledge he was. In the span of 20mins, he managed to rattle off about 10 useful tips for piecing together a car/team. 

Everyone we met from the race staff to the fellow teams were incredibly friendly and welcoming. It feels like a wonderful community of people that are mainly out there to have a good time racing and support each other. Who wouldn't want to be apart of something like that!?!"

 

The fellow racers, crews, families, staff and race officials make me really proud and grateful to be a part of this organization!!!

Thanks a lot to Ed and Dave and their teams, the Champcar staff, and anyone else who showed these guys the welcoming atmosphere that ChampCar is all about.

 

Edited by mcoppola
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10 minutes ago, Team Infiniti said:

Your car was noticeably faster!

 

Best part is it's all been suspension, brakes, aero, and wheel changes.  We've literally done not a thing to the driveline besides run it.

Edited by krispykritter
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Kudos to everyone that started the race as that is when I drove.   Everyone was smooth, predictable and I don't think I caught anyone off-guard as I came up on them.     

 

It pretty much turned into the worst weekend we've ever had at the track after my stint.    A door latch failed on our first stop requiring us to pit twice to fix as the first time we thought it just didn't latch.   After that our driver was frustrated and took awhile to focus.   2nd stop went ok but we lost time during the caution period because people simply do not know how to drive under a caution.   I really wish my petition of penalizing these people would have been accepted.   It's the only way teams will actually learn what they do affects the front end of the field. 

 

Ultimately none of it matters as we had a driveline failure, same as Daytona.   We thought we fixed it as we had no issues during the 2 WRL races.   Going back to the drawing board on that.    We could have fixed it but had no desire to as we no longer had a chance of winning. 

 

 

The 626 was doing ok, we took an extra stop to try and identify an electrical issue that never showed up again.   We were still either 1st or 2nd in class when It was then wrecked by a renter in T1 later in the race.   100% driver error.   Whole drivers side of the car was smashed up and bent the strut.   That's what ended it's day.    Lots of repairs to do on that.   😒  

 

Oh and the SIM card in the phone in the Cobra even decided to fail so we couldn't stream.  

Edited by Snake
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1 hour ago, krispykritter said:

 

Best part is it's all been suspension, brakes, aero, and wheel changes.  We've literally done not a thing to the driveline besides run it.

 

Don't leave out driver improvements/experience.    

4 minutes ago, Snake said:

Ultimately none of it matters as we had a driveline failure, same as Daytona.   We thought we fixed it as we had no issues during the 2 WRL races.   Going back to the drawing board on that.     

 

Trans failure correct?  

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12 minutes ago, Snake said:

Ultimately none of it matters as we had a driveline failure, same as Daytona.   We thought we fixed it as we had no issues during the 2 WRL races.   Going back to the drawing board on that.    We could have fixed it but had no desire to as we no longer had a chance of winning. 

 

The 626 was doing ok, we took an extra stop to try and identify an electrical issue that never showed up again.   We were still either 1st or 2nd in class when It was then wrecked by a renter in T1 later in the race.   100% driver error.   Whole drivers side of the car was smashed up and bent the strut.   That's what ended it's day.    Lots of repairs to do on that.   😒  

 

Was definitely curious what took both guys' cars out of the race.  Driver error happens, but sucks.  One of the other guys mentioned the driver side being smashed in but I didn't see it before ya'll left.  I've suggested to several of my coworkers who are interested in racing to contact you guys looking for a seat one of these days.  Trying to get more folks addicted to my fix.  Everyone I've heard from has enjoyed running with ya'll.  Good luck with the repairs and upgrades.

 

9 minutes ago, Jab31169 said:

Don't leave out driver improvements/experience.   

 

Absolutely, very good point.  We've all learned a ton over the last four years.

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4 hours ago, krispykritter said:

 

Ha!  We may have gotten our incidents crossed up then.  I was in the car getting new brakes in the garage when someone came by but one of my drivers spoke with him.  It sounds like the incident that my other driver had was with the 66 mustang and thought you guys were from that team.  If this happened between 3 and 4 it was mostly likely me driving - sorry for not speaking to y'all about it, I definitely didn't notice the contact!  I'll look back through the video once we have it all downloaded and find the incident and post it up here.  I'm guessing I hit your rear quarter then?

 

I need to apologize - I'm not sure how I didn't notice the contact but certainly feel bad it took you guys off track and cost you a wheel.  I'm not sure if I'm at fault but I feel like it's likely I could have probably have done more to avoid it.  Going to have to see if the guy with all the video footage can find it sooner rather than later =(

Well CC rules it would be my fault for the contact. I'm glad it didn't cost you guys anything it sounds like. Lesson learned as I thought I had a good enough run on the outside to get by. Was about 3' short. :(

 

I'm really surprised it didn't do much to your car.

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1 hour ago, jakks said:

Well CC rules it would be my fault for the contact. I'm glad it didn't cost you guys anything it sounds like. Lesson learned as I thought I had a good enough run on the outside to get by. Was about 3' short. :(

 

I'm really surprised it didn't do much to your car.

 

I'm far more surprised I didn't notice. Our contour weighs in at 2800 lbs before you put the driver in, so it's got weight on a lot of the field. Something like 2000 lbs of that is on the front end.

 

Sorry anyway, I do try to avoid people when they only do that occasionally, we all make mistakes! There are a few cars out there that I'm not going to yield to anymore when they try to take the front end off my car though...

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