dinanm3atl Posted August 13, 2012 Report Share Posted August 13, 2012 The John Allen Special team is a few BMW E30 nerds that decided to go racing. We started on the car in November of 2011 and this was our first event. Showing up at the event I cannot remember how many people came up and said they were following our build on Facebook, Bimmerforums or some other internet location. People that I have only had 'debates' with on the forum were jovial and happy to have a fun conversation. This started while we were parked in line waiting to get into VIR. People are offering advice and simple conversation for the noobs. We all had huge smiles on our faces as we rolled into VIR. Our first taste of Chump racing is a positive one and we have not even made it into the race track yet!As many know our results were downright terrible and not anything that we were hoping for. We came with a strategy to preserve the car and just get everyone to drive. Then kick up the pace and turn consistent laps. We have an ETA(m20b27) and no chance to turn fast laps but knew we could go off the much heralded ETA reliability. Unfortunately that reliability was not so hot on our ETA. The car has been in my posession for a year and before that 2 years of a friend. We never did any maintenance. It just keeps asking for more abuse. We clean it up and put in the wrench time and it pops the main belt off and leads to losing the water pump which overheats the car and melts... yes melts the engine.Now coming from Atlanta that sucks. We got about 1hr 30min of race time. I started the race and have to say that was the best time ever. It was simply awesome. Although we were slow and I was short shifting to save the car to hand it over to the other drivers it was the most fun I have had on a race track. I have done a lot of HPDE and track days in much faster BMWs but this topped them all! And I was only in the car for an hour! I did my best to just turn our laps and let the guys and gals racing do their thing so hopefully I was not in anyone's way. With that said I cannot wait to drive again. I handed the car over and we were off again.Our 2nd driver simply did not notice the rising temps and it eventually let go. At the time we did not know this and the car was towed in. We all rushed from the pits and ripped the car apart. This is where my instant love for ChumpCar started. In the span of about 2 hours we figured out the damage was terminal but the support from everyone in the paddock was amazing. First we get someone to loan us a belt to test. Then we get some gaskets from another team. As we continue to work more and more teams and people come by to wish us luck getting back out. Many more offer up help. More than we could ever hope for given the situation. The car was dead but our love for ChumpCar could not be stronger. We had planned and carried a lot of heads. Going over with the co-captain I think the only spare we did not actually end up having to fix this issue was a bottom end. Rarely see a failure there and not so soon. A lot of new parts were installed and did not think to carry a new main belt but another team quickly came to our aid. Unfortunately we could not get the car back out there In the end we loaded the car up about 330-4pm and rolled out back to Atlanta. It was a somber by ride home but the mood quickly went from dissappoinment to a discussion on how awesome the event and atmoshphere was. ChumpCar is awesome and the people are great. There is not much to say outside of that! We will be back at the Atlanta events this year. Plan to add more! Just want to say thank you to all the people that were so friendly! It was an awesome weekend and we cannot wait to get back! Obviously not getting everyone into the car was super dissappointed but photographing endurance racing is what I do for a living. I was really upset that we were not out there and I could not shoot into the night. I will have a photo up with some shots from Oak Tree and the race start from Turn 3(lent my camera to co-captain). Wish there were more but not this time Here is a short recap of our weekend. Thanks again... huge smile on my face!Links to the end result...http://farm9.staticf...ae5eed980_b.jpghttp://farm8.staticf...d4c16b4ef_b.jpg 1 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Join the conversation
You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.