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Chump Car Daytona 14 hour race review and video!

Guest ArtisanResearch

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Guest ArtisanResearch

Hello all,


I have had a month or so now to let my experience from Daytona sink in and have had some time to reflect on the endeavor.  I went down with Rally Baby Racing in our 1987 325is which we had prepared to the best of our abilities over the past year.  Other than my single day event at NJMP last year, it was the teams first Chumpcar event, although well-versed in that other crappy car racing series. I found the Chump car race to be exceptional fun and regard the race there as one of the greater days in life thus far.  I have done a half dozen or so Lemons races and while I appreciate the sillyness and social aspects of it, they are merely an accessory to the reason I get out of bed each morning- to race cars!  I found that Chump had a lot less bull cookies all across the board and felt ten times more like a race than most of the Lemons races Ive been to put together.


Our team was running consistent 2:30-2:25's all day and had made it up to 19th at one point.  In the final hour of the race, at about 9:15 we had a catastrophic wheel bearing failure which we were able to replace on pit lane.  Fortunately, a neighbor on each side of had dropped out and the head honcho let us slide a bit for exceeding 30 minutes.  We initially bled the brakes as the driver reported the pedal went to the floor and everything was piping hot.  While it wasnt suspected that it was the cause, but merely the effect- it seemed like something wise to do until proper diagnosis had been made.  After inspecting the brake system we put the wheel back on and the car would barely roll.  Back in the air and a shake of the wheel and it was evident that the massive play in the right front wheel was a result of a wheel bearing failure.  We had everything (mostly) in the pits to do the repair.  I remember when the chief came up to me to tell us we were exceeding the time limit in the pit lane, it was just as we had gotten the old bearing off and were moving full bore to replace it.  Again, with no neighbors around it didn't seem like we were being inconsiderate so we did the repairs there.  Being my first event, I didnt realize who he was, he said that we only had 20 minutes left of the race, and I replied that I only had fifteen minutes of work to do!  He obliged which we were all very thankful for and we got it back on track at 9:54 and were one of the final cars to take the proverbial white and checkered flags.  A big thanks to people that were nearby helping us out!  I was running up and down pit lane frantically looking for things like BMW lug bolts, a 7mm wrench and who knows what else!


Driving on the road course at Daytona was surreal and is an experience that I will never forget.  We were limited to roughly 125 MPH unfortunately but it was still a blast.  I vividly remember being in a staggered 5-pack of cars in the steep banking and just screaming in my brain, "TOO MANY MOVING PARTS!!!!"


We ended up finishing in 31st place out of the 124 entrants which I find to be a great success.  I calculated that we would have come in 21st without the wheel bearing issue, although my esteemed team mate insists that had he been out there in this alternate universe he would have someone come in at a higher rank-assumedly my crashing into other people or finding 6th gear perhaps.


We had a *fairly* clean race.  All of the dirty stuff is in the video- someone spun in the bus stop and we strategically drove right into them and then we spun ourselves without incident.  


We are looking forward to doing Daytona every other year as it is quite the haul from Pa, but definitely will be attending more Chump events with both the Glen and VIR hopefully on the schedule within the next year.


Please enjoy this short film I created capturing our journey as we traveled 986 miles to drive 910 miles to drive 986 miles back home again!  Thanks again to everyone who put on the event and to the guys on my team for working so hard to make things happen.  I look forward to racing with you all again soon!



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Guest ArtisanResearch

Nice build. What do you use for mounting the tablet to the car?

Thanks! We had taken our licks over the first year with various teething issues but its a well sorted POS now.  The owner, Phil, whom is very resourceful came up with the mount.  If i recall correctly, its either C-channel or angle iron that he had welded together but I am not certain.  


The spinning target was me in the #7 Brick House Racing e30. I'm glad you used the brakes.

Yikes!  Yeah, that wasn't me driving but that was a tough hit.  Glad that everyone was okay!  No real damage to our car...as exclaimed in the latter portion of the video ;)

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