Friday, March 29, 2013

NASA Central @ Gateway Motorsports Park

Being only 80 miles from my doorstep, I rolled into Gateway Friday night to get acquainted with my ride for the weekend.  The owner gave me the 5min tour of the car and I tested the seat (he's taller than me and 40lbs heavier) and gave it the all clear.  The pedals and wheel would be a stretch; but doable.

After a morning detour through East STL because of a closed onramp, I arrived just in time for the 7:30am mandatory Driver's Meeting.  Being with NASA since 2008; most of the regions run very similar setups so it was all very familiar.  Qualifying was about 1.5 hrs away; followed by practice and the 35min race about 2:30pm.

 The car was all setup and ready.  The only question was how much weight (aka ballast) we'd have to add to the car to make minimum weight and be legal.  The plan was to weight after warmups and go from there.  So after about 6-8 laps of getting to know the car and no surprises - besides it's a Miata and it was loud and slow - and rolled over the scales and we added some ballast.  A 1:17.1 was the time.  With no setup changes, Qualifying later yielded a 1:15.1 and the PTE class pole by .1 out of 3 cars!  With the current PTE track record being 1:15.9, I felt pretty good about notching that in the race; assuming I can beat out the rest of the class as well. 
Min weight was 2330; and my after-Qualifying weight was 2345.  We added about 30+ lbs of ballast to the car to make up for the fuel we'd burn during the race.  Our strategy was to fill the coolsuit cooler (not being used; only in the 40's) with as many bags of bolts that could fit and top off the car with fuel. 

No comments:

Post a Comment