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Thread: Oli's SCCA Run-Offs Diary

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    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    Default Oli's SCCA Run-Offs Diary

    I left last night at 10 PM. I hardly got any sleep Saturday night. I worked on the car until midnight. I went to bed after 2 AM and got up at 4 AM to go to SV's BW 13 on Sunday.

    The first session sucked. I had not adjusted the rebuilt shocks and I was out of nitrogen and 7s Only was not yet open. I took the car out anyway as I wanted to make sure nothing was loose, rattled, funny pulls on the car, etc. as I had gone completely through the car. I came back in as everything felt good except the shocks. I did find one missing bolt though.

    I worked some more on the car, actually I was tired and lazy and had 7s Only do some work and I charged the shocks and adjusted them. I went out in the 4th session on thrashed Hoosiers that were qualified and raced twice a month ago at BW, they were scrubs before that. But the car still felt great. Even with the crappy tires she felt OK. I banged out a 1:58 and put her in the trailer. I figured I did not want to damage the car. I would go to Heartland Park Topeka, put on some fresher tires and play with the car in practice this week.

    Last night, Monday I left my house at 10 PM. I did not get much sleep Sunday as I prepped to leave. I went to bed late and then the thunder storms came in and they were as good as I have ever heard in SoCal. My wife was freaking and my youngest came into my room scared. Not much sleep and then off to work. I was so tired that 45 minutes later I pulled over at Maple/6th St on the 91 and napped 45 minutes. I then drove until 5 AM and stopped in Beaver, UT I think it was. I slept 90 minutes and then took off again.

    Just after lunch I was on my cell phone as I was blabbing on my cell phone with T1 racer Steve Schmidt I see an open race trailer ahead. I did not pay much attention as I was driving and on the phone. I pulled alongside and I did not see any SCCA stickers so I figured it was not going to HPT. It took a few moments as I figured it was some local UT car going down I-70. I thought the driver of the truck looked a bit familiar and then I realized it was the C-West S2000.

    I start to pass the rig and go on my way and the driver floors it and races up next to me. I look over and Robert Fuller, aka RobiSpec, is leaning forward and waving to me from the passenger seat. We call each other on our cell phones and play phone tag. I was eating some crappy Arby's chicken nuggets, but I agree to stop with them in Grand Junction and have some pizza. We go to Harbor Freight, fuel up and take off towards Denver.

    I am in Denver now. I was too tired to go on so I am going to nap a couple of hours and then push on some more tonight. My time budget should give me four more hours of sleep later tonight if I don't fart around on TrackHQ too much....

    Last edited by Olitho; 10-10-2008 at 07:32 PM.

  2. #2
    dirty smack talker hakeem's Avatar
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    Good luck Oli! Competition is always stiff at the RunOffs in T1 but I am sure you will do great. I'll be watching Speed looking for you!

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    Professor Chaos thefrush's Avatar
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    In for epicness. Get 'em Oli. We're all pullin' for ya.
    "The crashes people remember, but drivers remember the near misses" -Mario Andretti

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    Member sleeperlove's Avatar
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    If you don't win don't bother coming back.


    Kick ass!

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    Senior Member mlk_f1's Avatar
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    haha, best of luck to you Oli. Not that you will need much of it though. And don't worry too much, you WON'T get lap.

    Edited:

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    Motorsports Photographer imager993's Avatar
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    Good luck Oli! Sorry I haven't had a chance to return your call, but we'll have to chat after you get back. See if you can get Speed to install a camera in your car!
    Aaron Kupferman | 2007 BMW Z4 M Coupe | Visual Effects Electric Reality | Motorsports Photography Motorsport Lens | Other Photography AaronKupferman.com

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    Hey Oli -- lay off the HoHo's during the Nationals -- that stuff will kill ya.

    What is Robi doing at the SCCA run-offs? He's usually a Time Attack guy, although he did drive with me in the Miata at the NASA 6 Hours of Buttonwillow Enduro last June.

    Give 'em hell!
    The deposed former Sheriff of trackHQ . . .

    2006 Porsche 997 Carerra Coupe 6-MT - daily driver
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    2004 Honda S2000 AP2 6-MT - track day car
    2006 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX MR 6-MT - when I need a backseat, 4-doors, or a real trunk, and still want to haul ass . . .

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    Junior Member jared57's Avatar
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    You need to find a co-driver next year.... for the drive TO the runoffs. Wishing you the best, good luck!

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    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    I arrive in Topeka yesterday a bit of a zombie. I went to check-in at the track and drop off the car and trailer. I went to my assigned spot and it was on the grass! Last year it rained and the grassy spots got super soggy. I don't know how I would jack the car up on the grass. I could have sworn it was on asphalt when I registered. I liked the spot I had as it was near Schepergerdes, McGinley, Kopp and some others. This spot was also near the hot pit entry, garages, rest rooms, grand stands, offices, etc.

    I got moved to the south paddock area. It is a good spot. I am parked near Haggerty and Crites of SCCA CalClub fame. I also get a good view of the turn 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 corners. I short walk gets me to the fast turn 8-9 corners.

    I picked up a couple of convex mirrors that mount to my roll-cage near my stock mirrors. Wow! What a better view to spot cars next to me in the blind spots. I took off the stick on Pep Boys convex mirrors from my stock mirrors. Ron from Bill Haggerty's team was lending a hand last night after 5 PM when almost everyone was gone from the track.

    Right now I need to go grab breakfast and hit the track. I think I am likely to burn through my scrubs today as I get mega track time. I wonder what I will do for Saturday practice...?


  10. #10
    Driver upgrade 2.51 JC3D's Avatar
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    Great to hear you and the yellow beast made it there safely. Good luck with the weekend. I hope they give you just as much tv coverage this year as last year.
    John
    #522 996 Spec / GTS3
    JC3D // Racecars and Keyframes // 996 Spec

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    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    Thursday, October 2nd

    Today was my practice day. I am fairly happy with how the day went.

    The car ran well all day. I got to put in almost 90 laps today. I spent the whole first session learning the track. I was examining it for the best lines, experimenting a little in the turns and such. I was not so happy with my driving last year. I did not feel I really mastered the track. A lot of my time on track last year was marred when the car was not working quite right due to the hard time we had tracking the problem down to a bad MAF.

    I tried different lines, I ran up on curbing to see which ones upset the car and which ones were fast lines. I even tried running over the curbing and into the dirt, a practice that was very prevalent last year, especially with the front runners. Most of the curbing is very usable and jumping over the curbing in places is down right fast... if not cheating. But if everyone starts doing it this year and there are no sanctions for it... well, I guess I will do it too.

    I did hit the dirt and grass twice today. Once going into turn one I unsettled the car over the hill and missed my turn-in. It got my attention as I am well north of 100 MPH. I am not sure who was working that corner, but I got his attention as he began to scramble. Later in the day I was running down the #5 T1 Corvette from Nebraska I think. I carried a ton of speed into turn one and through turn two. I ran out of track outside of two and ran off the track where Bill Haggerty of San Diego and several other drivers totalled cars in the wall last year. I managed to run off straight and fairly parallel to the track. I ended up running on the off-camber grass right between the wall and the brake zone number signs. My mower airdam on the front of the car worked great. Tomorrow I am going out with a hay baler attachment on the front. It is a shame to waste all that Kansas hay I cut down.

    My tires today were not so good. I ran two sets of scrubs down to cord or close to it. The right front tires on this track don't last long. I am putting on a set of used Kumho V710s for Saturday. After that I am done for tires except for the set I am saving for qualifying and the other set reserved for the race. Last year my fastest laps the whole week came on the 17th lap of the race.

    The good news is today I beat that time by a 1/4 second on thrashed tires. I am hoping that with new sticker tires and a little adjustment on the alignment that I can pick-up two seconds. If I can do that I will potentially be a bit outside of the podium hunt based on last years lap times and those from the double national a month ago at HPT. The problem is that the two front running C6 Corvettes last year will still be one to two seconds faster I think. The other game changer this year is that about 1/2 the field will be C6 Corvettes, plus four Vipers a one each Ferrari 360 and Ferarri 430. Three Run-offs podium finishers from other classes have moved into T1 this year. So I guess I need to hope the tires and alignment work and some superb driving can get me three seconds or I will be lost in the back of the pack.

    The car has a cool looking body wrap on it. I will try and get some pictures posted tomorrow.

    My next practice is Saturday.


    Oli

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    Senior Member zjchaser's Avatar
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    Best of luck out there! Hope you get some good TV time again as well. Be safe and kick some ass!

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    dirty smack talker hakeem's Avatar
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    90 laps

    Sounds like you could be up there if you are so close to last years time on the thrashed tires....I hope you can qualify well, and good luck!

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    Corners > Straights JDMxDB8's Avatar
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    Good luck Oil! 90 laps sounds like a lot of fun. Driving nirvana...

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    Senior Member DiyMAN25's Avatar
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    Very nice write up . if there are pic incl it. that would be even better


    J.H

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    Racepar Engineering racepar1's Avatar
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    I was confused there for a second, but then I remembered that SCCA moved the runoffs away from mid-ohio a few years back! They let you get THAT much track time a day now??? When me and my dad went back in '97 with the atlantic car you only got one session per day. It made it pretty damn hard to really get up to speed on a track that we had never seen before, especially since mid-ohio is so damn complicated.

  17. #17
    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by racepar1 View Post
    I was confused there for a second, but then I remembered that SCCA moved the runoffs away from mid-ohio a few years back! They let you get THAT much track time a day now??? When me and my dad went back in '97 with the atlantic car you only got one session per day. It made it pretty damn hard to really get up to speed on a track that we had never seen before, especially since mid-ohio is so damn complicated.
    Next week is qualifying. I will only get on track once per day on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Saturday I race.

    Yesterday and tomorrow are practice. Tomorrow I get four 35 minute sessions. Yesterday I got five 40 minute sessions!

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    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiyMAN25 View Post
    Very nice write up . if there are pic incl it. that would be even better


    J.H
    I will try and get some pictures to post up....

  19. #19
    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    Friday, October 3rd

    Today was an uneventful day. No driving today. I slept in until about 8:30 as I was still recovering from the drive out here and the 90 laps/225+ miles I did on track yesterday.

    I spent the day cleaning up the car. I had so much rubber striping down the sides from all the lapping everyone is doing. I moved my radio attenna in the car from the back roll bar mount to the center of my roof. I also added a copper ground plane between the headliner and the roof and then upgraded the attenna to one with a 3db gain. My previous set-up last year would static out on the far ends of the track like turn 7. It would do the same at Buttonwillow down by Star Mazda. The new set-up should allow me to talk to Nasa Houston Control in Texas.

    I also mounted the tires I will actually run in the race and mounted some more scrubs to thrash on tomorrow. I hope to do about 60 more laps tomorrow. That will put me around 150 practice laps and about almost 400 miles total.

    I also had my helmet radio system wiring all cleaned up and the pads reglued by Trackside Communications. I did a bunch of other misc. things to prepare for Saturday practice and Monday qualifying.

    Before my last session on Saturday I am going to change my calipers, pads and rotors out to bed them in before qualifying.

    Today there were two T1 Corvettes and one T1 Viper running. The Viper driver is good. He also raced here a month ago at the double national. Being from St Louis he gets to run this track a lot to his advantage. He ran 1+ second faster than me, but I am not sure what shape his tires were in when he did that so that does not really reveal much of anything.

    I will give an update tomorrow after practice. It is going to be a crazy busy track, probably 50+ cars at a time. Drivers are getting agressive and racing a bit and getting close even in practice.


    Oli


    Last edited by Olitho; 10-03-2008 at 10:18 PM.

  20. #20
    Motorsports Photographer imager993's Avatar
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    Keep the details coming Oli! And...



    Okay, maybe not worthless, but it would be cool to see some.




    .
    Aaron Kupferman | 2007 BMW Z4 M Coupe | Visual Effects Electric Reality | Motorsports Photography Motorsport Lens | Other Photography AaronKupferman.com

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