Archive for February, 2009

Week 3 – Mazdas at Lime Rock? No thanks!

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009

I started the week with every intention to get a race in all three series but as I describe below it was not to be…

Star Mazda Race Results

Lime Rock Park

Star Mazda at Lime Rock Park you say? No thanks!

Tried a few practice sessions and quickly decided to avoid this combination. I don’t like it in the Skip Barber, so sure as hell would have struggled with the Star Mazda.

I took the safe option and decided to let this week be a drop week. Probably the best choice.

Chevy Silverado Race Results

My Chevy Silverado Phoenix International Raceway

Had a great race at Phoenix. Using a setup by Tyler Hudson I enjoyed a really memorable race where I slowly but surely used pit strategy to crawl my way to the front. I gambled on a two tyre stop with around 20 to go and managed to hold on for a strong second place finish. 133 points!

Skip Barber Race Results

Summit Point Raceway

I always seem to get a good result at Summit Point Full so I tend to look forward to racing here. I qualified second and had the best start I’ve ever had. Actually it was so very nearly a jump start as I set off before I’d even seen a green light (a complete mistake) but amazingly, my start actually coincided with the green light and somehow fortune was on my side and I made a cracking getaway!

I didn’t have the pace to win though, and fell back into second, pressing on for a strong finish. Halfway through the race my G25 shifter broke and started giving me upshifts instead of downshifts about 30% of the time (not fun!). I had to nurse my ailing car to the finish for a strong second place, and 135 points.

Now I have to figure out how to replace this sorry shifter without breaking the bank!

Week 2 – How NOT to start a truck race…

Saturday, February 14th, 2009

Following on from a busy week 1 I was able to get some more racing done in week two. The week wasn’t as successful as week 1 in terms of points, but I still had two good races.

Star Mazda Race Results (iRacing members only!)


This was my first official race at Sebring, and despite liking the track I really struggled to find my pace here.

I went into a race and started in 13th of 16 (despite matching my PB in qualifying!). I had a pretty good race though – kept it on the black stuff and picked up places when the faster guys dropped off the circuit. I had a few interesting battles on the track with much faster drivers. My car had a very low downforce setup and despite being much slower in the corners I was still able to pull away on the straights – even when my rival was firmly in my slipstream. Such a cool way that you can have two cars with completely different setups challenging each other on the track in very different ways.

I soaked up lap after lap of pressure and eventually brought it home for an 8th place finish for 108 points (better than I expected!). Another zero incident race too, and a whole single point of iRating to the good!

Chevy Silverado Race Results

My Chevy Silverado


I was really looking forward to this race as I found I had a strong setup that actually had me running closer to the sharp end than I usually run. Was looking for a strong finish. As you can see from the video of the lap 1 start, the race was ruined before it started when someone in the outside pacing lane span their wheels on the green flag and barrelled into my car, destroying my right front alignment.

I never recovered from the reset and finished 10th, one lap down. 68 points and a mandatory 4x incident (mandatory in a sense that it seems every truck race results in a minimum of a 4x hit somewhere….) In future I now know what I should do when resetting to make sure I don’t go a lap down.

Skip Barber Race Results


At the end of the week I found I had just enough time to squeeze in a Skippy race at VIR Full. Despite it being a challenging track I found it easy to get back into the feel of the track and only needed a handful of laps to get back to my previous pace here.

I started 9th in a full field of 14 and did well to avoid incidents throughout the race. There was some lap one spinners that I had to navigate around and some passing made as I worked my way back up through the field.

I had a nightmare spin on lap 2 as I passed a slower car – I got my braking perfectly into turn 1 and I had given the corner quite a large margin of respect but annoyingly I used more steering wheel than I needed to and lost the car with a lazy spin.

Later in the race I saw the craziest set of collisions I’ve ever seen. I arrived at the top of a crest to find around four cars all basically parked and slowly getting back onto the racing surface. A comedy of errors ensued as they took turns to collide into each other, and even flipping one car! I tip-toed through the carnage and drove on to a 6th place finish which was good for 100 points.

Riley Prototype hits iRacing

Saturday, February 14th, 2009

Friday the 13th saw the delayed Riley Daytona Prototype join iRacing as the top tier class A road licence car.

I’ve had a few laps with it and it’s another good quality car with an excellent model, detailed cockpit and great sound. The car has a wealth of setup parameters (most of which are completely unique in nature to the car, wicker tape adjustment for one!) so tuning the car for ultimate pace and drivability is going to be even harder than before.

The car drives well, but doesn’t really seem to be the huge challenge that I expected from the class A road car. There’s a lot of grip and the car seems quite stable to drive. This is a good thing for close racing, but I expect when we get a class A open wheeler we will have a ‘true’ top tier road licence race car in iRacing.