OK, so this isn't actually a new thing. By this I'm referring to the blog not the actual racing. Although I'm relatively new to that too. This makes no sense so please let me explain.....
My team mate started a blog last year about our foray into British Motorsport. This year I'm continuing racing only my team mate has now become acting mechanic & thought it would be good to write an update on racing the Mk1 MR2 with the track attack club. so here goes....
So we left for Brands Hatch on Sunday morning, luckily we weren't due to even get the car scrutinized until 10:25. Oh Hurrah a lie in on race day. Maybe I should explain. Normally this occurs at 8-8:30 in the morning so we have to normally leave home at about 5:00 in the morning. Not today however we get a lie in and leave at 7:00.
This will be the third round in the series (maybe I will get to update you on the previous 2 rounds another time) & we were feeling hopeful prior to qualifying. We had good reason for this as at the previous races at Castle Combe I qualified 10th and managed to finish 7th & 9th in the races (best ever result) despite never having driven the circuit. I had tested Brands Hatch earlier in the year (along with a few BTCC teams making it a bit of a surreal experience) so was feeling particularly confident.
Roll out into qualifying then, as it was a 20 min session and being the Indy circuit (Short Configuration) we decided to come in halfway through the session and adjust tyre pressures. I got out early and ran some laps ahead of the traffic, I knew the first few were ok but not quite good enough. So pushed on for the next few laps. Then I dropped a bollock. It was going to be my last quick lap before pitting but as I came out of surtees and braked for clearways the back end started to slide. Realizing I wasn't going to catch it I accepted my fate, dipped the clutch and braked & hoped not to hit anything. I'm not exactly too sure what went wrong (probably a bad down change) but luckily I was unscathed and still on the track. I turned it around did another lap and came in. I then did the rest of the session and ran some quicker laps.
After the session we hurriedly went to collect the results to see where we would start. We looked down the list then "oh Sh*t!" I had qualified 18th and not exactly sure what had gone wrong. The top 20 were covered by a second, it was going to be a competitive days racing with some work to do.
Come the first race & I decided to get my head down and get on with it. Lights out and straight away, wheel spin. Bugger!!! All was not lost though, only one car had got past then what I feared most, a queue at Druids on the inside line. 2 cars immediately drive round the outside. My immediate thoughts being "well this is going to be fun."
Well I'm not going to describe the whole race as you can watch it just below. But I did find out where I was losing time, I was quite clearly never quick enough in Paddock Hill bend, which is easily corrected for the next race. I kept it on track and took a few places and managed to finish 14th.
Onto the second race & I did exactly the same thing. Wheel spin at the start and caught in a queue on the inside of` Druids. Only this time more cars got past. Luckily though I managed to catch some places back and made my way back to 13th by the finish. The last 5 mins of the race is definitely worth a watch however.
So in conclusion it was a fairly disappointing weekend, but I can't complain too much as I had never raced Brands before and when you do race a circuit, you learn so much more than you would in testing. The next race is at Snetterton and again I'm quite hopeful as this is very much in a similar vein to Castle Combe. So I will give you an update after that race for anyone who cares. And if you don't I will probably still write it anyway for it to be ignored along with most of the other crap on the internet.