Sunday, July 1, 2012

Some of the competetion

As you can imagine, with 150+ teams, there were quite a few creative are a few:
Team Hades
Godzilla Loves Bacon
Mormon Missile
The Most Interesting Car in the World
Super Trooper

Headed home

This was taken after we were loaded up, as you can see by the abject disappointment etched on Franz'face. Unfortunately, the only phone number he came away with was this guy's.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Crossing your fingers doesn't work

On a positive note, we'll be well rested....and not burning another 150 gallons of fuel is much more environmentally friendly. We sent Carl out again to give it a go. 20 minutes later, we were packing up the gear. As they say..."that's racing"

The Pits!

Sitting' in the pits is the pits! Carl was off to a strong start when we were hamstrung with some as of yet in diagnosed mechanical problem:( we are going to try some head gasket sealer, cross our fingers and hope for the best

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Buttonwillow Race Prep

Scott, Franz, and I joined Carl in Auberry to put some finishing touches (auxiliary headlights-we will be running a straight 24 hours, radios, hydration)on the car. Carl did yoemans work prepping the car before we got here. Tomorrow we will head to Bakersfield for a practice day. We hope to get a good night's rest, then racing begins 10am Sat till 10am Sun. I will try to post as frequently as time allows.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Rookies step up, veterans deliver... 16th of 162 @ Buttonwillow

Ok, so we started out with several changes we thought would make the car faster... Putting in a repaired limited slip rear differential, a stiffer set of used shocks, beefier sway bars, wider tires (we had to roll the wheel fenders using a piece of pipe to stop the inner lip from cutting the tires. We also went with a 1 piece drive shaft, but that was just for ease of service - if it became neccessary! We also figured it was time to replace the original rubber bushings on the control arms... that turned out to be a nightmare!

We were very concerned after the last race at Infineon, that the car had this wierd delay set turn issue - where you would have to turn in, and wait a second before it stated to turn - then it would set, and you would adjust the turn based on that. Pretty disconcerting! We also burned through alot of oil at Infineon, and had an overheating issue. It also developed quite and understeer - you turn - and the car keeps going straight! We figured with all of those changes, we would have the delay and the oversteer worked out - figuring worn bushings most likely.

We also figure we must have finally blown the head gasket - compression readings seemed to confirm that... 165 - 180 on 4 cylinders, 90 on the other 2. So we had to deal with that. We only had 3 weeks to get ready, and Scott was stuck in Utah!

Pull the head - gasket is fine - have the head tested - one cylinder is down because the valve is too tight - and not shutting properly, machine shop adjusts that, the other - it looks like just a good old fashioned broken ring - no time to deal with that - put it back together - and off we go to Buttonwillow. The fastest track we run on - 4 - 5 mph average faster than any other.

We have Franz in tow for his first Lemons race, as well as our new friend we picked up at Infineon. Gunn just got started in Lemons, and we needed the help, and he needed the opportunity, so we brought him on board.

Scott starts out - we now have real time scoring on Iphones, so we can keep track of where we are at. We get boned on the flag, and are sitting at 91st out of 162 after the first 10 laps.

We can't see the flag station at the end of the long straight from the car, and don't want to pass on yellow - so we send a spotter down to watch the flag station and call the flags. Dad jumps into action.

Anyway back to our racing! Scott's whining about the understeer not going away - I have no idea why - it should be gone - so now we are talking about disconnecting the front sway bar to see if that helps. About 1hr 45 into it - Scott says something different is happening with the steering - you go into a corner - and the wheel clicks down, like a ratchet, and resets itself to the lower position as the new neutral. My first thought is that we botched the welding on the quick release - anyway - seeing as how his life is now in danger with a car that cannot steer - he decides it's time to come in. We check the welding job - no issues there, get some help from the guys pitting next to us - another Supra - we figured we could help each other out in the war against overwhelming odds - trying to defeat all of the 40 BMW E30s on the track!
Anyway we finally see that the whole steering rack is shifting left and right - 2 bolts were hanging there - one was gone, were were able to get it back on the track in 20 - 25 minutes, but with Gunn in the car. I was worried because he had overdriven the car and spun it during practice - but then again - that was with a loose steering rack! So he goes out and turns laps for an hour, and stays out of trouble.
We bring him in and put Franz in the car - he figures it out pretty quickly - stays out of trouble - and turns laps for an hour.
we bring him in , and I go out for the final 2.5 hours, we are 48th.

It takes me 2 or 3 laps to realize that this is a different car that we had before - all of the changes we did have made the car far better in the corners, and much more predictable! I am cornering on par with the cheater spec Miatas, and blowing them away down the straights, so I get fairly agrressive and start hunting guys down, at the end of the day we are sitting 30th! pretty good considering!

Day 2 I lead off for the first 2.5 hours, and am immediately surrounded by a bunch of overtestosteronated idiots - lap after lap. If the camera is working - we should have 3 seperate spins - everyone right in front of me - with me missing by 5 feet one - going 2 wheels off to avoid #2, and a 6 inch miss on number 3!
Anyway, I am turning some good laps - a look at last years event shows we are 5 seconds faster per lap with the same car!

So I hand off the car to Franz in 22nd place, he goes out for 1 hr 15, faster and smoother that the day before, holds his own, Gunn goes in, drives alot better, and holds his own as well. With the extra pit stops and rookie drivers we fall to 25th when Scott gets in.

Turns out he can drive alot faster when the steering wheel actually works! He gets after it, and starts hunting down the cars ahead of us - 1 at a time - we continue to move up with a combination of attrition, good driving, and no pit stop for the last 2.5 hours. we finally jump into 20th place with about 30 minutes remaining - then 2 cars ahead of us go down with mechanicals, one with a penalty, and Scott hunts down the biggest jerk drivers on the course - with their orange Porche 944 - he comes from 55 seconds back, taking of 10 seconds per lap, surprises them and buries them with 3 laps to go = putting us 16th over all - and 10th in class A.

Another top 10% finish - which is always our goal. We went into this race not really running for place - we knew - new drivers, shorter stints, changes to the car - we viewed this as a prep for the 2012 season, turns out we accomplished all of that - plus still got a good result.

entered carl johansson (all lower case - with the space between names)
and jbr123 all lower case no spaces

Monday, October 24, 2011

JBR 15th out of 171 @ Infineon

We ended up 15th out of 171 entries I think 165 actually started. , Scott fought off 2 challengers in the last 1/2 hour, running with a bad head gasket. Final results have not been posted on the Lemons website, but I think we are maybe 10th in our class as well.

We ended up winning the judges choice trophy, which Scott and Jenny will engage in a passive aggressive placement war for the next few years, think the Christmas Story leg lamp!

I ended up driving just over 8.5 hours, Scott put in 7.5 hours, thats alot of seat time, with the exception of my one hour stint - unfortunately shorted by the ignorance of the Heinz 57 car, the rest of our drives were between 2 hours and 2 hours 45 minutes.

This was the 11th straight finish for the supra including 5 out of the last 6 top 10% finishes.

We have a short turn around before the Bakersfield race - Dec 2 - 3rd - something like that. we are having the head gasket redone, I am putting on a new LSD rear end, assuminmg the one I have can be rebuilt - just needing bearings, if the clutch packs are gone - you chuck it and look for another one, we will upgrade the tires from 16 X 225, to 17 X 255, we can do that simply by adding Mustang wheels to give us the better grip. We burned up 2 sets of rear brakes, fronts are fine - maybe our brake bias is off, I really woukld like to put in a brake bias valve - but don't know how to do that, or how hard it is.

In the last hour of each day, on that uphill run, you were looking directly into the sun, for about 10 laps there - I ran it blind - I would go up the hill in 4th, let off - wait for the car to enter the "dip" when that happened I went to 3rd, and waited 1/2 a count, then turned right, completely blind - but so was everyone else, somehow we got through it. Second day Scott had to deal with it, but putting duct tape over the top 6 inches of the windshield worked pretty well.

Besides the Heinz 57 car coming down on me and smashing me (spun them out, I had to go in see the judges, claim it was my fault- which it was, I should have expected the unexpected, and pull the fender away from the wheel, ) I had a BMW hit me square in the rear - room on either side, no other traffic, not turn - just cruising a straightaway, and bam! Some other clown came all the way across the track trying to claim some sort of imaginary racing line - he ended up being spun out to, nobody bothered me about that one.

Some poor guy, through the fault of the ignoramouses in the Faust Racing Red Devil car (you should read Aholes when I say that) anyway we have run across them several times - you must understand - they are entilted - they require that any and all racing against them unquestionably yeild the line, slow down, and bow to them as they motor past). Anyway, they took out some poor guy, who ended up rolling 5 or 6 times in spectacular fashion, Utube it!

Don't know if anyone got cursed, but the biggest cheater car there - a race prepared custom painted 1996 BMW 525, with a spectacular motor, they disappeaerd in the last 2 hours, after running in the top 5 both days. I lobbied several other teams to vote for justice and crush the biggest cheater. I suspect if he did get cursed, he probably trailered his rig and ran like the sissy cheater that he was!

Tough running with 2 guys, hope some of you can make it as crew and or another driver for Bakersfield. (Race report submitted by Carl)