First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

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trublustu
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First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby trublustu » Wed Sep 02, 2015 9:46 pm

On the Bank Holiday weekend, myself and my track buddies all took part in a Sprint competition at Cadwell Park with Javelin.
It was our first tentative step into competitive motorsport with scrutineering and proper race numbers.

The sad part is that I was painfully slow, nearly lost it and exploded my clutch (again) though this time it was my own fault.
Though I`ll come to that, I`ll try to describe how the day went and what it was like.

As the day drew near I thought I`d prep my car for sprinting.
First thing I did was lose the passenger seat and belt. With the passenger that`s probably 80+ kg weight saving straight off.
I also softened my suspension a little and adjusted my ride height a tad.
The coilovers are Gaz Golds and I haven`t had the chance to do an OPL trackday to fine tune them. Sessions and sprints are not an ideal way to set them up. But I went with it and didn`t crash!
I pumped out all the fuel and put 2 gallons in the tank, taking another two in a jerry would be plenty. (A lot less than a trackday)

I made the mistake of `showing willing` at work and agreed to help out on the Saturday, that turned into a 10 hour shift! Which wont be happening next time I have a 150 mile journey in the evening.
I arrived at about 11 o`clock and as I was just bivvying in the van, the security guard said I could keep my money (which was nice)

Now the `signing on` procedure was quite different to a regular trackday
and I needed to be ready to go, with the car at half seven in the morning.

So up at six, and prep the car (take stuff out, secure bumper and swap wheels)

Then first thing to do is get the car scrutineered. This gave me a little sticker and a signature.
Only then would the nice lady check my license and award me a wristband.
Then an even nicer lady awarded my with my A5 size race numbers. (I was 33 which matches my reg :grin: )

The briefing was a little different to a trackay as there`s no overtaking, warm up etc to cover, they just explained where the little gate we would be squeezing out onto the track and where the timing lights/timer display were and how the runs would be organised.

There were two sighting laps, which were all over the place speed wise. Then we were to wait for our numbers to be called.
The fastest classes went out first and as we were all 30`s we drove out together for our first un-timed practice run.
This is us.
5405

After 16 regular trackdays I found blasting off, balls out, on cold tyres, strange.
It`s not just un-natural, but bloody scary too!

From the start line at the top of the `Mountain` I blasted off trying not to spin the wheels up (no TC) and hit the Hall Bends at 7000 revs in second. Perfect, I just needed to feather the gas and sit at 60+ all the way through the `Hairpin` and on to `Barn`. going up to third on the way out.
I could have changed up but would have been changing back down a second or two later and was paranoid about the tyres.
Then its the fast back straight and into Coppice, which at trackday pace is a 100mph corner.
Not on Sunday morning it wasn`t!

5406

I still carried good speed and stated to relax a little about the tyres.
BIG mistake as the back end carried on when I tried to turn into the long right hander, Charlies!!
I got it back but was now going the other way on the grass but soon had it back on the black stuff with a different coloured stuff running down my leg!

This knocked my confidence and couldn`t stop thinking about it for the rest of the day, so my lines were awful and speed carefully applied and scrubbed off too soon.
By the time was hitting Park my speedo was past 110 with better exit speeds and none paranoid braking I could get to heady speeds!
By this point on the track the tyres were without doubt warm and attacking the last section down the hill was a hoot.
The finish line was just before the footbridge.
First 3 runs went 1:48.75 - 1:47.70 - 1:47.06 dropping nicely.
then I had a right moment in the Hall Bends which put me back on a 1:50.38.

This is where it went to pot.

I had put just 10 liters in and had done about 15 track miles which will have used over a gallon. I should have topped up another gallon nd avoided the following dramas..
after my best start so far I hammered through the first section and exiting Barn I lost all power for a second or so! It kicked back in so I carried on with my lap and went well untill I was exiting the long Chris Curve I lost all power again. It was fuel starvation with the pump sucking air in the hard corners.
Now I dipped the clutch and coasted (hurtled) through the gooseneck, then the engine came back to life and instead of slipping it into 3rd and cruising back to my jerry can, I found 1st and nearly blew my motor when I dropped the clutch. - 1:55.81

I got back to the pits okay and after a quick check over and fuel up I lined up for my 6th and last run.
As I went to change up coming out of Barn my clutch literally exploded.
Leaving me with very little drive.
Just enough to get me back to the paddock where I pulled up in gear, on tickover! - 2:16.96
Game over and I never really got to grips with the car/track.
this is where it stopped. didnt go again!

5407

I wasn`t well placed but was not the slowest on the day.

Next outing will be at the old faithful Blyton for a half day trackday,
to set up my suspension just how I like it, and a Half day sprint in the afternoon.

Just gotta fit a new (better) clutch.

I really enjoyed the competitive angle and the social side of things between runs was great.
I`m thinking of competing in the Javelin Sprintday competition next year.
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby mrbushrat » Thu Sep 03, 2015 5:35 pm

Good report on your day,your differently unlucky when it comes to gearboxes. What tyres are you running on the back as the puma struggles to get heat into the rears. I fined it handles better on a bit more weight over the rear wheels so maybe worth while experimenting with running a full tank of fuel or some weights in the boot ( just my thoughts anyway)
But it is nice to see you in the grass routes of motorsport.

Graeme
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby trublustu » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:43 pm

Hi Greame.
I`m on Dunlop Direzzas alll round.
The few `moments` I had were all rear end stepping out violently.

It could be more shock adjustment. What settings did you run them on?
Though running with more fuel is a good idea.
A diffuser to give me downforce should help too.

I`ll give it a good twiddle at Blyton..
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby mrbushrat » Thu Sep 03, 2015 8:19 pm

Are the Dunlop a soft or a super soft?
I ran with the rears as soft as I could go and the fronts with 10 clicks from the softest.
On rally's I usually try and run with a full tank and a spare as it handles better if corners have bumps in.
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby Ziggy » Fri Sep 04, 2015 1:49 pm

DZ03G in R1 compound ?
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby trublustu » Fri Sep 04, 2015 7:44 pm

Yes Ziggy, R1 Compound.
I`m pretty sure that`s a medium compound, but stand to be corrected.

I have them roughly in the middle of their settings which is probably why I`m bouncing all over the track..

I`ll find the happy medium in a fortnight.
Now should I go for a genuine Ford or Stage 1clutch? (thats the budget limits)
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby mrbushrat » Fri Sep 04, 2015 8:23 pm

I would definitely go softer on the rear then if your half way.
You can get a tyre softener that you paint in the tyre that might bring the compound down to more of a soft so that may also help.
What is the little boot lip spoiler on you car of? As I quite like it and may pinch your idea.

Graeme
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby trublustu » Fri Sep 04, 2015 10:36 pm

It`s a universal boot lip spoiler for bmw & audi saloons
I found it on fleabay, though you need to order a custom length (130 cm)
cost`s about £25 :thumbs:
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby Flatoutfarr » Sun Oct 11, 2015 4:18 pm

Good review.

As a long time sprinter, hillclimber and racer, it is a shock when you first do a sprint but it is good day out. Very gentlemanly. I am also a MSA Scrutineer. Don't knock us. We want you to compete. We are there to help, not scare you.

You need to make sure you run enough fuel. The only way to avoid this problem is to have al alloy baffled tank made; then you can get away with running minimal fuel. To be quite honest, it's not worth doing unless you run a single seater.
Concentrate on having good brakes and suspension and tyres. You have to run List 1a tyres in the roadgoing class. Look at what everyone else uses before spending big bucks.

Always walk the course if possible. If it is a circuit, you don't know, and can afford it, do a track day before.

Good luck.
Feel free to come back for help. I leant the hard way !!
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Re: First time Sprinting at Cadwell.

Postby trublustu » Sun Oct 11, 2015 9:01 pm

Thanks flatout.

Oh yes. Running on low fuel needs careful monitoring. Because my car was misbehaving I took my eye off the ball.
Wont happen twice :wink:
Excellent advice regarding spending money improving our own driving ability rather tan randomly on the car.
Since this sprint, I have had a crack at another at Blyton Park, where I fared much better :-)
I think for sprinting/hillclimb, tyre choice is critical,
I`ll probably invest in some soft compound tyres just for sprints.

Other than that It`s just a case of becoming a better driver..
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