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2020 COTA Season Reopener


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  • Technical Advisory Committee

Rolling down I-20 with a worn out race car in tow. COTA is surprisingly hard on tires and equipment. But other than Barber (local) it is my favorite track in the country. Fast and slow. Very technical. 
 

Highlights for us:

Saturday blown motor mount. An hour before we had loaned out our only set to another team. Odds of that? Luckily Brian with 9-4 loaned us a set. Thanks to them, great people. Finished in the teens somewhere. 

Sunday car was flawless and had moved up to second place due to attrition ahead of us when with ten minutes left the hood pins broke out of the radiator support.  Managed to drive it around 3 miles to get it to the pits and ran a strap over it and get back out to still finish in 2nd place. Of all the strange stuff that has happened on track that’s probably the strangest. 

Great times in the pits with Cone Crushers and 901 Motorsports. All good people. 
 

Thanks to all of those in this series that made this race happen. I know it wasn’t easy. A special shout out to Race Director Chelsey Vickery, I thought she did a great job running this race considering all of the extraneous stuff to deal with. We have a good thing in Champcar, let’s keep it going strong. 

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Touche.. I really hope we come here again. Great track. I just couldn't get enough of the esses, what a fantastic section. Ballsy, and feels oh so good when it goes right. The esses and T18,19 combo were just what I needed from a racetrack.

 

Will be back next year with a stronger motor, #997 Miata.

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Also not sure if it matters or if any one care but the fastest lap times recorded in racehero/mylaps are not correct. The pit in lap are usually a few seconds faster and this can get recorded as a lap. So if the fastest lap time is before a pitstop it's bogus.

 

It can be really confusing when you trying to figure out what a fast laptime is. (I think the fastest laptime was a 2:40 and not 2:36)

 

I know WRL have a fix for this, somehow they filter it out and don't report those laps. 

 

 

(We got the fastest lap by far in 2017 with a 2:31 in our super slow datsun...)

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45 minutes ago, turbogrill said:

Also not sure if it matters or if any one care but the fastest lap times recorded in racehero/mylaps are not correct. The pit in lap are usually a few seconds faster and this can get recorded as a lap. So if the fastest lap time is before a pitstop it's bogus.

 

It can be really confusing when you trying to figure out what a fast laptime is. (I think the fastest laptime was a 2:40 and not 2:36)

 

I know WRL have a fix for this, somehow they filter it out and don't report those laps. 

 

 

(We got the fastest lap by far in 2017 with a 2:31 in our super slow datsun...)

I noticed the same thing.  Not to minimize in any way the excellent lap times of many cars,  I see mention of times that are incorrect for a fast lap.  For whatever reasons the pit timing pickup is not positioned same as the track pickup.  If you look at many of the car's fastest lap on Race Monitor, you will see that that lap was an in-lap.  It takes some digging back through the laps to figure out which really was the fastest lap.  Confusing as you say.  Great event even if we wrenched through most of it...

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AMAZING TRACK!

 

We had never been there before, I've only seen the track on TV watching F1 and MotoGP but always hoped one day to turn some laps on its grounds.  We made the 17+ hr drive there in hopes that the place was a horsepower track and we'd be at an advantage, boy was we wrong.  Seeing a ton of miatas registered we figured they knew something we didn't, this track is extreamly technical.  The Cobra has never felt this heavy while trying to throw it thru the esses or other tight stuff, watching miatas in front of us pull away thru that stuff wasn't fun.  We put our heads down on Saturday and tried to do everything we could, but a black flag for pass under local yellow and then a spin told us it wasn't meant to be.  We finished 2nd.   Sunday we knew what we had to do but we the start position gods were not in our favor and we had to start 30th.  After about an hour and 20 mins I was able to snatch the lead and work on saving fuel.  The rest of the team did great, we stayed clean with no black flags and just ran the race as we planned.  I think i have PTSD from my second stint and being stuck behind the pinto on FCY and then not realizing the track had gone green, we lost a huge amount of time to the leader.  We put the last driver in, gave him a full load of fuel and told him to just push till his hands bleed and it paid off, with about 30 mins to go we took over P1 and never looked back.  Some drama behind us gave us a big cushion and we could slow down and relax to the finish line.  Heartbreaking for 9/4 motorsports they were right there till the end.  

 

I hope champcar returns to this track, as it would be hard to convince the team not to come back with all the hardware we had to trek home.

FB_IMG_1592178495507.jpg

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9 hours ago, Luckyontheducky said:

Congrats!

Did you guys get any feedback from the 'monodigital salute' that was caught on the .live feed?  Classic!

 

LOL.  Bill came to us and said someone complained, he responded 'yeah.. its racing'

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9 hours ago, Luckyontheducky said:

Congrats!

Did you guys get any feedback from the 'monodigital salute' that was caught on the .live feed?  Classic!


and he never came by to apologize to my driver for calling him #1 btw. If he didn’t jump off of his apex the Ford would have hit him. You are welcome. Don’t try and out brake an e30. It’s okay, Chis got his team name finally. He will now be referred to as #1. 

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21 hours ago, Burningham said:

Managed to drive it around 3 miles to get it to the pits and ran a strap over it and get back out to still finish in 2nd place. Of all the strange stuff that has happened on track that’s probably the strangest.

 

I watched you go through the esses with that hood up.  You were hauling ass peeking through a mailbox slot.  Was pretty awesome.

 

 

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Ergolab Miata had a terrible weekend.  Well, everyone got to drive, new brakes were amazing, but we worked up to 2nd Saturday, getting ready for the 4th driver when the rear main went and ruined the motor.  Replaced it for Sunday but then Sunday the clutch started slipping and took out the trans.  Replaced that only to find we could not get it into 5th gear.  So I lost a motor, trans (maybe two of these), clutch and a trailer tire on the way home.  But I had a fantastic group of drivers.  We knocked out that motor swap in a few hours and went for a nice dinner.  As for COTA, I easily got the least seat time. On the fence about going back.  What a great facility though!

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59 minutes ago, Jer said:

Ergolab Miata had a terrible weekend.  Well, everyone got to drive, new brakes were amazing, but we worked up to 2nd Saturday, getting ready for the 4th driver when the rear main went and ruined the motor.  Replaced it for Sunday but then Sunday the clutch started slipping and took out the trans.  Replaced that only to find we could not get it into 5th gear.  So I lost a motor, trans (maybe two of these), clutch and a trailer tire on the way home.  But I had a fantastic group of drivers.  We knocked out that motor swap in a few hours and went for a nice dinner.  As for COTA, I easily got the least seat time. On the fence about going back.  What a great facility though!

 

Why not go back? To hard on the car?

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14 minutes ago, turbogrill said:

 

Why not go back? To hard on the car?

It's a long-@ss haul for many of us. For us it was 17 hours. Longest trip for us so far. 

But we'll be back, love the track, love the facility and the area. It was well worth it. 

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Depends on schedule.  it's costly to register, and I didn't get enough time in the car to fall in love with the track.  If we add High Plains to the schedule it might be in a similar time frame.  in addition, I don't know if the series goes back.  We lost money at the event.  How much of that is COVID-related is hard to tell.  Cool track, the BEST facilities.  Funny, 16 hour tow for us is about as good as it gets in Denver.  

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  • Technical Advisory Committee

Jer, did I understand Mike to say we needed about 75 cars to break even?  I hope we can figure out a way to put it out there to gauge interest in a future event there.  But I get you can't keep chunking good money after bad.  Hopefully we can figure it out.

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Sorry to hear about loosing money on the event. We didn't race because of our car got COVID delayed. Not sure how common that is. 

 

One issue might be the time of year, it's a bit hot during summertime. But maybe we get a better price. 

 

WRL does very good at COTA, not sure what the difference might be. 

 

17 hours is a long haul! 

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If you or yours were on track between 10:45-11:15 or so on Sunday look for your pic here:

 

https://flic.kr/s/aHsmNTCJkH

 

I shot a bunch from the tower and just downloaded them all.  No charge for non-commercial use!

 

I know Cone Crushers, the Boxster, Mini Cooper, '68 Mustang, the red/white blue Lexus, a hoodless Miata and Supra(?) are all there as well as #681 on the strap!

 

Enjoy!

Todd

 

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14 hours ago, Burningham said:

Jer, did I understand Mike to say we needed about 75 cars to break even?  I hope we can figure out a way to put it out there to gauge interest in a future event there.  But I get you can't keep chunking good money after bad.  Hopefully we can figure it out.

The breakeven number was somewhere in that ballpark.  

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Team Unintended Acceleration (1990 Audi 90) had a great time at our 3rd COTA race with CCES.  This was our first race on the newly rebuilt engine and fortunately it ran pretty good.  Probably the more noticeable improvement was from our new coilovers, as the car (which is traditionally prone to understeer) was much more neutral which allowed us to slice through the esses much better.  Tire wear was great and we didn't even use up 1 set of tires!  G-Loc brake pads also held up well.

 

During the race, we were only in the pits with unplanned stops for about 30 minutes total all weekend.  For the following:

- Battery came loose from it's bracket and was sliding around in the box (12 min)

- Drive got black flag for Blend Line violation (5 min)

- Blinking oil light, which turned out to be nothing (5 min)

- Car stalled on track and then had weird power, turned out to be nothing (5 min)

 

So basically all drivers got a full 2 hour stint each day.  We ended up placing 12th on Saturday (2nd in B Class) and 14th on Sunday (4th in B Class).  Pretty happy with these results and of course everyone had a lot of fun.  

 

Probably my favorite part of the weekend was when I got to battle it out with the old blue Celica for a long time on Sunday.  We're very evenly matched cars which made dicing it up really fun.

 

Looking forward to the Harris Hill Race in the Fall.  

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