This was a self-orgainised track day which meant the format was completely open session and it was also very cheap. The down side is that we had to take our own cones to mark out a circuit and you can't be sure how everyone is going to behave. No worries on the last score though, as overall it felt very safe and there never seemed to be that many people out at any one time. Driving standards were very high all day and the most I saw out at one time was seven cars. People who build their own cars seem to have a much greater respect for them and those of others around them. We had a few periods of closed track due to the odd spin off but just the usual minor excursions into the infield and outfield. The only damage was to egos.
The circuit formed a large oval with one end extended out with a spike to form a hairpin and one straight kinked with a chicane. This meant that it was quite a fast track and you could usefully get into top gear just. The A539's on my brother's Striker are a fairly hard compound and never really got hot though, resulting in significantly less grip than some of the other cars out on circuit. Great way to learn the limits of the car though and a good portion of the afternoon was spent using opposite lock.
This was mainly a Sylva Mojo event but there were also some Strikers and Fury's, including one with an R1 power plant, which I obviously had to have a ride in. The Mojo's had a wide range of power plants from 4AGE, VTEC and K-series to the odd BEC. I love the technical design of the Mojo but the bodywork is not pretty to me. There was also a single MGB on track, representing the normal cars.
Pete's Striker still had a few cooling issues despite high flow water pump and improvements to the radiator to improve air flow through it. On the first two outings it went really well but on the third it boiled over and poured an expensive amount of the water wetter onto the floor. It seemed to be getting hot and suffering from air locks. Our short term fix was to remove the thermostat and this made a big difference but after about 8 laps the temperature climbed and we had to come in for it to cool down. Despite this we spent plenty of time on track over the course of the day. The car is in desperate need of a quick rack and some softer tyres. The brakes were also getting warm this time and though not fading, they never quite give me the feel and confidence I would like my car to have. Still pretty amazing given that it has drums on the back.
Perhaps the highlight of the afternoon was the student filming session. A group of students had come along to do some filming and sound recording. They wanted to record Simon's R1 Fury going off at full chat from the pit lane and all we could do was giggle in awe as it took off down the straight. And this is with a live axle and a 3.5:1 ratio differential (my car is going to be IRS with a 3.38:1 diff ratio). The sheer pace of an R1 Fury is awesome and the noise completely intoxicating. Seriously quick doesn't do it justice.
It was Simon's car that I had a passenger ride in after a session out in Pete's Striker and the difference in accelleration, grip, cornering speeds, and braking ability is huge. Admittedly it was running on slicks but even I was finding it a little bit scary from the passenger seat. Do I really want to build something this quick? It has to be done.
This is me driving my brothers Striker, just before I lose it on the hairpin.
The day was also very useful for looking at solutions to a few problems I have yet to solve and to talk through ideas and options with people that have been there and done it. In this respect alone it was well worth the trip. Looking at Simon's air filter installation, I'm pretty sure my air box is going to be too big, so I've left the fabrication of the top half until I'm sure it will fit.