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March 22 - Texas Motor Speedway


cwemyss
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  • 4 weeks later...

Turned out to be a really fun track.... all 736 laps!

!!!!!

I don't know how TMS is able to bill that as a 1.3 mile course, but whatever it was, we had a blast. Really good race layout, challenging each and every lap. I'm exhausted, my shoulders hurt, and I'm seeing the approach to the south hairpin when I close my eyes.

Those who bailed because we weren't on the roval missed out. This was a lot of fun.

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Turned out to be a really fun track.... all 736 laps!

Those who bailed because we weren't on the roval missed out. This was a lot of fun.

Yes, we had a great time! Very fast passed and you had to be on your best, never a chance to relax on the track. Very proud of everyone on our Team, went in with the expectation just finish the 12 hours, never Dreamed we would finish 3rd!

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This was WAY better than it looked on paper , I ran the roval in the first Texas chump race and loved it but how much side by side can you do on the banking? If you had HP you could walk away from a better driver no matter how well they did in the infield . This course was all about close racing and much faster than we thought it would be. We ran between 46 sec (good driver) and 49sec (rookie driver) laps and most of the cars could run that regardless of HP as it was a fast rhythm course. Because the lap times were so close you could duke it out lap after lap . In an one hour stint 3 of us (4th 5th and 7th place cars) changed the lead 7or 8 times. The corner workers Thanked us for the show , it was that good.

I don't post much but I have been in about 20 chump and lemons races ,(drove the brown fairmont wagon( RIP) now running 82 Granada and AMC painted T-bird )and this track was hands down the most fun for your driving dollar.

Marty

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The track was fun, I'll give it that. Still wish it was longer, but not that big of a deal. I would probably be willing to run it again. Never ran the roval, so not sure what to compare it to.


 


There was one feature about the track that I really liked and thought that it evened the playing field between the higher and lower horsepower cars (I was driving in the Kia this weekend). It seemed like the esses section on the back side of the track was just tight enough to have to make people think twice about how much speed they were carrying through it. I was able to do it flat in the Kia a few times and the car didn't seem to like it, and I had to get it just right. A couple of quick lifts brought the car back into line and the tires sounded much happier. And since it led into one of the main braking zones a car like the Kia, which was down on horsepower, could actually do some passing because it wasn't an all-out drag race going down the straightaway. Cars would pull away from me on the front straight, I'd close down in turn one, they'd start pulling a gap on the back straight, but if I could get the esses right I could get up on their bumper and make a pass going into the braking zone for the final turn.


 


On the front stretch the esses section was pretty simple. I'm not sure any car was fast enough to make you have to think about lifting. Basically there were three sections of the track: turn 1, the back straight esses, and the final turn.


 


I try to take everything in stride. While I wish the track was longer for fun's sake, I used it as an opportunity to work on my driving. Since you were doing a lap every 48 seconds you saw the same corners over and over and only really had to focus on three sections. So, I did some experimenting. I radioed to the pits and had the guys tell me how my lap times looked depending on what I was doing. I'd see what happened when I downshifted going into the tight corners versus leaving it in a higher gear. I would keep moving my braking point deeper and deeper. I tried to set a fast lap for about 5 laps in a row to see if I could repeat it over and over. Then I backed off to what I considered a "comfortable" pace that was a lot easier on the car: a little bit longer braking zone and a little bit more deliberate lifts in the esses.


 


I learned that it only cost me about .5-.8 seconds a lap for the "comfortable" pace and the car sure behaved a lot better and it was much easier on the brakes. I also feel like my braking skills dramatically improved this race. I was working the brakes harder this race than I ever have, and being able to practice the same braking zones over and over helped that to happen. I learned that leaving the car in the higher gear not only was faster (in this case), but also easier on the car and more repeatable because there was one less thing to worry about under braking. I felt like I had more entry speed into a corner this race than I ever had before.


 


So, while the racing would have been a bit more fun with about ten more cars, and I have been to more exciting tracks, I thought this was a great track for learning racecraft and I came out of it with some new skills I didn't have before the weekend started.


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I ran this weekend with Marc on the RRC Team and had a great time. Marc and Vince did a GREAT job prepping the car and are a lot of fun to hang with. Before I write about the race I MUST comment on our ROOKIE's (Vince) driving. Vince was OUTSTANDING!!!!!!! He ran lap times as fast as anyone on the team, never put a wheel off, and didn't put a scratch on the car. 


   This was a perfect venue for the cars that Chump fields. Driving around the oval for a minuet in 5th gear would not have been fun, except for maybe the V-8 cars, but the rest of us would have gotten bored. If you have been to Hallett or Eagle Canyon, there are more corners per lap but still busy places to drive, and the same  number of corners per minuet of driving, think about that for a few minuets.


  Special Thanks to Marty in the Grenada for pushing us in after the race, when we ran out of gas 2 laps for the checker.     AND TO


  Team 28 the Blue 67 Mustang the gave us a gal of gas to get to teck and not have to push.


 


Thanks everyone else for the GREAT time and all the CLEAN driving.

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We were running the 280zx and we had a blast.  We ran the roval in Sept. and we enjoyed this more.  Fast paced and challenging.  It was also fun to be able to see on track who you were chasing.  It was a little hard on the left front but we would definitly run this layout again.

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I'm glad I withheld my opion about this race until checking it out first. I remember alot of east coast Chumps having some reservations about their Chumpionship at VIR on Patriot. Afterwards for the most part it seemed most racers enjoyed it.


I was worried  that it would be a slow track because of it's size, but the track was fast and had a good flow. It worked out that the two best passing zones were the two turns on each end of the track. They are very wide which gave the passing car and the passed car several different lines.  


This was the best learning experience our team has had since we started this type of racing. It would of cost us thousands of dollars to get the hands on training we got at this race. We all felt we left this race much better racers. ;)


 It also helped that the car performed fantastic until have mechanical issues. We felt good that when we retired from the race we were leading by a few laps.


I would like to thank the other drivers for making this an awesome event.Even though the track was small I only had light contact with one car ( my fault, no damage to either car, still my fault ) and don't remember seeing any other contact. Had a blast racing with the 67 car and the Granada. Which reminded me not to judge a book by its cover. The Granada was very fast and they knew how to drive that beast. :D


If they hold this event again, were in! Screw the roval. Short track racing in the infield is were it's at.


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I too, was disappointed about the format of the race changing. But was happy to be racing regardless of what configuration. But I can tell you, I had an absolute blast racing on this short track. It had to be the busiest I've ever been on a track. I also have never felt so exhausted from racing as I did after this race. But I agree with what was posted earlier, that this track has made me better driver. I'd also like to thank the Chump staff, volunteers and corner workers for a great event.

Something I found interesting while volunteering for the USCA on Sunday. Was that at least half of those cars didn't have lap times any better than we did. But the other half was extremely fast. I figured that most of them had trouble putting all their power down to the track, since they had at least twice the horse power.

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