Monday, December 31, 2012

Chumpcar "Chumpionship" Nationals - Wrap-Up.

With my 2-hr stint complete, I handed the car over to our 4th driver who would finish out the day.  Things were going about normal.  I believe we were around 12th still; within 5 laps of the top 10 even with all of our fuel pickup issues and pitstops to fix. 
After some downloading of information to the team including how the car was handling with the vibration issues and recalling what other teams driving simply sucked - I got changed and we started to pack up the pit area a bit.  With a close eye on the laptimes, I took the time to visit with a few other teams and discuss what I thought about Chumpcar in general.  Relaxing and whatnot.  About this time I realized I hadn't seen our car in awhile!  With about 25min left in the day, our car was nowhere to be seen so I started heading back to our pits.  On my way I grabbed a steward and he said there was a car coming in on the wrecker and I had a bad feeling it was ours.  Turns out it was.  Nearly 7.5 hrs into the 8hr day and 15.5 hr race weekend our race was over.  SEE PIC.

Engines aren't supposed to have holes in the block!  With a broken car, our race weekend was over.  On the upside, all of our drivers ran a full stint on Saturday and when the car broke; it was one of the co-owners behind the wheel.  I believe we retired in 13th place overall.

fwiw; the top 8 cars or so were all BMW's at the end of the 15.5 hr race weekend.  BMW e30's mostly with a few E36's.  How the E36's qualify as a $500 car I have no idea personally.  Our old beater had more pull on the straights but the braking sucked and all those smaller BMW's could corner a lot better and faster.  We were holding around 11th before the first of the issues came up; I think with no issues it was at best a #8 placed car judging by the laptimes.

Chumpcar was a pretty cool experience.  The talent level is a bit lower than what I was used to in NASA, but everybody is nice to each other and helps out especially in the pit area.  Enduro's on the whole are neat as there's so many different levels of strategy involved even if you aren't in contention for the overall.  Fun stuff.

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