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2020 Gingerman 8+7 hour enduros race reports


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Bavarian Mustache Werks had an excellent weekend as well.  The racing has always been great here and the competition sure has stepped over the years!   No longer is the Coookie Cutter Classic the 'eas

I have ZERO shame for utilizing the process that is provided to all of us to help keep our club in check.  No one should have any shame or reservations to do so, as long as there is some just cause in

If you hang that pic up on the wall, that room will end up with glitter everywhere    🤣

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SHUT UP, recap:

 

TL:DR - two 2nd place finishes. Car was good. We had fun.

 

This weekend we had three of our four drivers and one crew. None of us have ever been to Gingerman,but it had been on our list. We made the drive out from NY on Thursday and that went fairly smoothly other than getting some water in our diesel from a gas station in Michigan. Luckily with some help from our sponsor Iso-heet®️ we were able to carry on and make it in around midnight Thursday night.

 

The Friday test day went well with the exception of one of our drivers doing some extracurricular agriculture work and ripping the front splitter off. We decided to not put the spare splitter on for various reasons. Tried the car without a rear wing as well and it was virtually undriveable. We also found a disintegrated sway bar bushing that was causing the car to be incredibly lethargic on turn-in and not very nimble on direction changes. @E. Tyler Pedersen loaned us some bushings and the car was back to it's good old self. We knew we wouldn't have the outright pace of the other fast teams but figured with some good pit stops and consistent driving we were ready to give it a rip on Saturday. 

 

Saturday we started in 3rd place and we had a good stint. Surprisingly/Unsurprisingly we were actually around 6th place by the time we did our first stop. That's ok...slow and steady... The second stint was good as well. Not quite as fast, but we slowly chipped away and were actually in 2nd place by the time we pitted. From around here we could tell we would be fighting in/around the podium. We did our last stop stop and came out in third place. From what I recall we were fairly safe from behind so it was just a matter of if we could catch 2nd. During the start of the last stint we were also 3 laps behind 2nd so we thought we might just be holding station even though they had to stop as well. Once they came out of their stop I believe we were not very far behind. Less than thirty seconds. So we started to push a bit harder and ended up catching them up pretty quick. Unfortunately, this is when things got tricky. Long story short, as soon as I got behind them I could tell this wouldn't be very simple. For one, they would pull bus lengths down the back straight despite an apex speed approaching zero. Secondly, there was lots of movement under braking and in the turns that made it very clear they were willing to be predictably unpredictable. Since the onus is on the passing car to execute the pass cleanly I knew this would be difficult. With the contact rules this mean I didn't want to risk going side to side and having them close the door I was halfway thru. I tried a few times but backed out as they squeezed me out of my lane. In hindsight, the driving wasn't as dirty as I felt at the time. But it was by far the move aggressive that I have seen and I didn't want to reciprocate in kind as I wanted to preserve a podium and didn't want to damage our car. I will try to get video up later but I'm struggling with the files and video editing software.

 

While we were grilling dinner I was checking Facebook and noticed that Bill strong had posted about the DQ of 2nd place. WOAH! We hadn't seen that coming as when we left impound we were under the impression that everything checked out. Hey, we'll take it. 

 

Sunday we knew would be another tough race as the 7hr races don't really help our strategy.We also knew a couple teams that had issues the day before might have them sorted for today; i.e. Partsbadger.... Anyways, our strategy was more or less the same, except we would be trying to pit under cautions. Also didn't help that instead of starting third we were starting closer to third from LAST. We worked the car up to around 5th place before our first stop. Came out with our second driver in 5th place hoping to continue chipping away at some of the top teams. Unfortunately about halfway thru his first hour of the stint he went off in Turn 3 and when he came back on must have clipped the curb just right which bent the wheel badly. This was allowing the wheel to hit the strut tube and was causing much anxiety both inside the car and on the pitwall. After some discussion we decided the best option was to continue on and see what happens. we managed this and at the quiet hour break we had moved up to 4th. After a snack and a nap our 2nd driver had found an extra gear and managed to put in a great second half of his stint to get us up to 2nd/3rd place and we came out of our 2nd stop in 3rd place. During the stop we replaced the left front wheel even though it had sufficiently self-clearanced on the strut tube. Our third drive did a good job, not really making any inroads to Two Brothers Mercedes in 2nd place, but helping to extend our gap to fourth place. However, he was greatly concerned about a potential wheel bearing issue and also the right front was becoming more square than round after repeated lock-ups. Once again, there wasn't much to do besides carry on and hope for the best. Right as we were getting ready to pit we noticed that Two Brothers pace had slowed! We had some hope now! Not knowing it would be terminal for them we decided to bring him in and complete our final stop. We changed the right front tire since we had the time and went back out in 2nd place. Little did I know, the car had been nursing a high RPM stumble/missfire since after the quiet hour. Apparently this was not of much concern to the previous drivers but I was a bit more skeptical about what may come of this and decided to go as slowly as possible while retaining second. This involved short shifting around 5k RPM using only 4th and 5th gear while trying to retain visual of 3rd place (Nine Four and then Bavarian Mustache). The stint felt like forever and I was super relieved to cross the line in 2nd for back to back podiums. We weren't easy on the car on Sunday, but it hung in there like a champ.

 

Thanks again to Champcar officials and staff for a great event. Great to meet a few new people this weekend. I thought with the exception of one car that the driving was very good all weekend.

We will see some of you at Pittrace!

 

Will post video once I get it.... Plenty of good battles in there.

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1 hour ago, Bill Strong said:

The pace car was the most awesome car this weekend.

Original post updated. to include images, video and results

 

I thought you were sandbagging at one point, but then I noticed you were driving an MR2.  :) 

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1 hour ago, shutupracing said:

Unfortunately, this is when things got tricky. Long story short, as soon as I got behind them I could tell this wouldn't be very simple. For one, they would pull bus lengths down the back straight despite an apex speed approaching zero. Secondly, there was lots of movement under braking and in the turns that made it very clear they were willing to be predictably unpredictable. Since the onus is on the passing car to execute the pass cleanly I knew this would be difficult. With the contact rules this mean I didn't want to risk going side to side and having them close the door I was halfway thru. I tried a few times but backed out as they squeezed me out of my lane. In hindsight, the driving wasn't as dirty as I felt at the time. But it was by far the move aggressive that I have seen and I didn't want to reciprocate in kind as I wanted to preserve a podium and didn't want to damage our car.

 

I don't have any video of it, but as I drove up to you guys in 7-8-9 I could see how tight the racing was.  Very aggressive.  I was like "damn these guys are racing pretty hard".  Even though I saw all this going on, I was still surprised when he raced me as hard as he did when I wanted through.  I put some wheels in the grass a few times because I didn't think I had enough room....  

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22 hours ago, NigelStu said:

While I do not enjoy 'winning' on a technicality with a protest, I really dislike losing to a team that is gaining an advantage by operating outside of the rule set and do not think it is fair to all my fellow competitors to allow a team to run with expected infractions.  I filed this protest for ChampCar membership. 

Ben no reservations in doing what is asked of all the members as we are the police so to speak and need to make sure we watch with open eyes. I was also glad to see how Ray handled the issue in impound. Everything was done by the rule book.

 

Shame was the wrong word so inserted the proper, reservations. 

Edited by 55mini
wording
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1 minute ago, 55mini said:

Ben no shame in doing what is asked of all the members as we are the police so to speak and need to make sure we watch with open eyes. I was also glad to see how Ray handled the issue in impound. Everything was done by the rule book.

I have ZERO shame for utilizing the process that is provided to all of us to help keep our club in check.  No one should have any shame or reservations to do so, as long as there is some just cause in the protest and research for what should be right.   

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6 hours ago, Zauskycop said:

That last pace lap before the race on Sunday may have been at race speed....

 

I am asking for a point reduction from the 400 points it's at.

Somewhere around the Miata.  

 

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16 hours ago, JRHille said:

 

I don't have any video of it, but as I drove up to you guys in 7-8-9 I could see how tight the racing was.  Very aggressive.  I was like "damn these guys are racing pretty hard".  Even though I saw all this going on, I was still surprised when he raced me as hard as he did when I wanted through.  I put some wheels in the grass a few times because I didn't think I had enough room....  

I have all that video. Got some good gestures on camera. 😂

 

I think even if an F1 car came up behind him he would have fought it to his death.

 

My apologies to Hakuna Miata who got rammed by said car around turn 7-8... That was very frustrating for me to see innocent cars getting caught up in our battle.

 

 

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4 hours ago, shutupracing said:

I have all that video. Got some good gestures on camera. 😂

 

I think even if an F1 car came up behind him he would have fought it to his death.

 

My apologies to Hakuna Miata who got rammed by said car around turn 7-8... That was very frustrating for me to see innocent cars getting caught up in our battle.

 

 


gestures? I was just waving :) 

 

let me know if you get the video up, I’m curious to see how close we actually were 

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TireRack.com ChampCar Endurance Series Cookie Cutter Classic 8+7 full weekend recap! 

  

Saturday 8 hour - DNF (crash/suspension failure) 

Sunday 7 hour - Class B winner 1 of 9 - 9th overall of 44 cars 

  

Our weekend got off to an easy and uneventful start. We got to the track and unloaded without issues. We were cleared through tech inspection by noon on Friday and set for a great weekend of racing. Little did we know that our weekend was about to get a lot more hectic! 

  

Saturday 8 hours: 

  

We wake up Saturday morning and began to do some last minute prep on the car before going to grid. We set the air pressure in the tires, top off the fuel tank and clean the windows. A few minutes after topping off the tank we noticed a leak under the car. A rubber gasket on the fuel pump had been damaged and was leaking very badly. Our driver/mechanic Matt Koval quickly changed the damaged parts just in time and we rushed to make it to grid in time to start the race. 

 

We started the race on Saturday around the 6th position and quickly moved up to P2 overall. After completing only 6 laps we lost 3rd gear in the transmission and quickly started losing positions. We kept the car on track using only 4th gear until a full course caution gave us the opportunity to pit and check over the car. We realized at that time that the transmission had broken 3rd gear and we would be limping the car around in 4th gear for the remainder of the weekend. 

 

At the lap 33 stop under caution, we completed a driver change and fueled up the car. Unfortunately, after only 6 laps of driving, our driver had a brake issue entering into turn 10 and made very hard contact with a Miatar. He had to be towed back with a wrecker and would end the day. Unfortunately, I not sure of the team name or number of the Miata that we hit, but I spoke with them and apologized for ruining their day.

 

After the wrecker dropped off the car in the paddock we started to assess the damage. Cosmetically the car was a mess and it wasn't until we dug deeper that we truly knew the scope of how bad the crash damage really was. The collision bent the driver's side spindle, inner/outer tie rods and broke the electric power steering rack. 

 

We were in a real jam at this point due to the fact that the parts that were broken are very difficult to find. This is when the car community showed it's true nature and lots of people began the search for the parts that we needed. 

 

We first contacted our friends at For the Sake of Racing to see if they knew of anyone with the parts that we needed to fix the car. Quickly we had leads on the spindle and the steering rack and everyone jumped to action! 

 

A friend of ours, Ethan Everett Layton, had a hydraulic power steering rack and was on his way to Holland, MI to assist another racer with his car. Ethan took the time to bring us the steering rack all the way from Lafayette, IN and even stayed with us to help on the install. We finally finished the work at 2:30am. We could not have gotten our car back on the track without Ethan's incredible generosity and we cannot thank him enough. 

 

Ethan was not alone in his incredible display of generosity. Even with the steering rack, we could not completely reassemble the car without a new spindle. Michael Vladiff, a driver of For the Sake of Racing, came to the rescue and he gave us the keys to his 8th gen Civics Si so that we could pull of the spindle to use on our car. Michael literally gave us the keys to his house and car just to help get us back on track. 

 

After all of the phone calls, social media post, borrowing parts/car and numerous trips to the parts stores we finished repairs and we were ready to race. 

 

Sunday 7 hour race: 

 

We make it to grid Sunday morning with our car looking like an extra in a Mad Max movie and start the race near the back of the 44 car field. By the first pit stop for fuel we had worked our way into P17 overall. Even though we had to run the car using only 4th gear and we had no power steering we had decent pace and were ready to battle. 

 

With the car now running well and able to make a full run on a tank of fuel we then realized that we could only really make 1-1/2 hours on a tank and would need to make extra fuel stops to finish the 7 hour race. 

 

We kept pushing through out the day and maintained a 3rd place running order in our class B. One by one the cars in front of us also had issues and both the class B leader and P2 were retired from the race late in the day. We suddenly realized that we had inherited the lead in class B. 

 

After we realized that we had inherited the lead and had a 15 lap lead on P2, we informed our driver of our position to ensure that he took good care of the car. The car ran fantastic the rest of the afternoon and at the end of the 7 hour event we took the checkered flag #1 in class. 

  

We are so unbelievably grateful to all of those that took time out of the lives to help our little team succeed. We would not have had the opportunity to win our race without a lot of help from everyone in our race community. This is why we race and sacrifice our free time and it's makes you feel so good to see an outcome like this. 

  

Thanks goes out to For the Sake of Racing, Acuity Instruments, Tire Rack, Imperial Furniture of Dowagiac, ChampCar, all of the safety/corner workers and everyone that helps us this past weekend. 

 

Now time to get ready for INDY!!!!

 

image.png.237951cec58e5e0ffb0047a7637bdbd3.png

image.png.f3034eb1968ead0548b55913a6e2dab3.png
 

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4 hours ago, Dustin B said:

Miatar. He had to be towed back with a wrecker and would end the day. Unfortunately, I not sure of the team name or number of the Miata that we hit, but I spoke with them and apologized for ruining their day.

 


 

 

Reviewed the photos and it appears it was the #138 TBD Racing 1995 Miata. Big apology to those guys for the contact and I was glad to see them back out racing on Sunday.

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here is the video from the last stint on Saturday. Action starts around 1:36:50. 
 

in hindsight it was a bit cleaner than I thought. But the video doesn’t fully convey how aggressive it was. This was by far the most stout defense I’ve seen. If I had been willing to rub fenders i feel I could have forced the issue. But I was not willing to risk a contact penalty and lose a podium. 


the parts I didn’t like were;

1:39:00 - stays inside, not his normal line

1:41:30 - pushes me wide

1:43:20 - squeezed inside

1:48:45 - hits an innocent Miata. 
 

after he hit the Miata I realized it wasn’t worth it. Even if I did get ahead the chances he would hit me would be high. Not sure why I thought e36’s would have that much motor, in hindsight I should have known something was up. 
 

 

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54 minutes ago, shutupracing said:


here is the video from the last stint on Saturday. Action starts around 1:36:50. 
 

in hindsight it was a bit cleaner than I thought. But the video doesn’t fully convey how aggressive it was. This was by far the most stout defense I’ve seen. If I had been willing to rub fenders i feel I could have forced the issue. But I was not willing to risk a contact penalty and lose a podium. 


the parts I didn’t like were;

1:39:00 - stays inside, not his normal line

1:41:30 - pushes me wide

1:43:20 - squeezed inside

1:48:45 - hits an innocent Miata. 
 

after he hit the Miata I realized it wasn’t worth it. Even if I did get ahead the chances he would hit me would be high. Not sure why I thought e36’s would have that much motor, in hindsight I should have known something was up. 
 

 

Notsure why I thought e36’s would have that much motor, inhindsight I should have known something was up. - wow that Miata was quick.

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1 hour ago, shutupracing said:


here is the video from the last stint on Saturday. Action starts around 1:36:50. 
 

in hindsight it was a bit cleaner than I thought. But the video doesn’t fully convey how aggressive it was. This was by far the most stout defense I’ve seen. If I had been willing to rub fenders i feel I could have forced the issue. But I was not willing to risk a contact penalty and lose a podium. 


the parts I didn’t like were;

1:39:00 - stays inside, not his normal line

1:41:30 - pushes me wide

1:43:20 - squeezed inside

1:48:45 - hits an innocent Miata. 
 

after he hit the Miata I realized it wasn’t worth it. Even if I did get ahead the chances he would hit me would be high. Not sure why I thought e36’s would have that much motor, in hindsight I should have known something was up. 
 

 

 

Wow........that is some BS right there.

Great driving by you, and way to keep your cool. 

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5 minutes ago, wvumtnbkr said:

Is that the same driver that was in during @NigelStu video earlier in the thread?

Sure seems like it from the videos.  Needs a serious taking to.

 

So lemme get this straight....  teams drives like ass, and dangerously, and has a cheat ass stroker motor.  

 

Sounds like cool people.

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