As the summer usually goes, making time for entries on the blog gets tough. But the fun doesn’t stop! I must tell the tales of SG!
Looking back to the last blog post it seems the last thing I’ve spoken about was our ICAR race in the Canadian Touring Car series. That was the second weekend, races 3 and 4 of the championship. We’re now at races 9 and 10. I’m sure you can imagine some crazy ass shit has happened since ICAR. You are correct! The luck that I’ve had this year has been incredibly horrible. It’s hard to understand how so many stupid, weird, unpredictable things can keep going wrong.
Let me summarize:
Weekend #3 @ Mosport – We were out with the Nascar Canadian Tire boys, and DJ Kennington went out and won the Nascar race right before our second race (he had an amazing race and just won right at the end after battling forever with a few other dudes). He told me to make it 2 for Castrol. That was my intention, until the wastegate seized and the arm broke inside the turbo. On the first lap. Talk about shitty luck. I did get 3rd in the first race, which wasn’t horrible, and Bob did pretty well throughout the weekend, finishing 7th and then 5th.
Weekend #4 @ Toronto Indy – I was really hoping to dominate this weekend. It’s obviously one of the biggest weekends of the year, and it’s a track we usually do well at since the brakes on the Genesis work pretty damn well. Everything would have gone awesome if the headgasket didn’t go on the motor (during Qualifying). But it did. I set a new track record in Qualifying of a 1:19 something, but because we (and half the field) left our pit box too early to line up for qualifying, I lost my 2 fastest laps. It’s as if the lap never happened. I finished 2nd in the first race after our new replacement motor was slightly down on power, just couldn’t catch Boake in the Subaru. In the 2nd race we experienced some ignition breakup (which actually turned out to be two broken injector wires), which caused me to lose a few positions – I would finish 4th. It was cool, but I wanted to win.
CSCS at Mosport DDT – after having ignition breakup issues at Toronto, as well as realizing the rear brakes weren’t working AT ALL, I thought it would be a wise decision to go test the thing before our next race. Conveniently there happened to be a CSCS event that weekend and I thought what better time to see if our car is working correctly? New gearbox, fixed rear brakes (the pads would not bed in, had to run the car on the hoist in 5th gear while holding the brakes to bed the rear pads!), and some more ducting to try and get the car to stop running so hot. We got the lap record for all the classes with the Genesis on old Conti tires. Cool that we were able to do that with such a heavy, long, RWD car on such a tight, tight track.
Some of the SG crew had their cars out as well, and I’m proud to report that Andrew wheeled his nearly stock RX-8 (just coilovers and SG alignment) to a podium position in street RWD, and Marco would have done well if he didn’t lose his composure and throw dirt everywhere!
That brings us more or less up to date. The disasters that were to ensue at Mosport last week happened only after complete awesomeness. Saturday night after our first race I told myself no matter what happens, there’s no way I can be pissed. The weekend had just been too awesome! I would end up being somewhat wrong. Let me tell the whole story:
Friday comes along, cars are ready and at the track. We would have only one session on Friday – in the evening, for practice. This is the day after the super ridiculously hot heat wave. It was still like 35 degrees during the day, and hadn’t cooled off much. We went out for practice with a fresh alignment, new sticker tires and the car running pretty well. I took it really easy on my warm up laps and tried to slowly bring the new tires to life and warming up the brakes, just getting a gap with other cars etc. First flying lap, 1:29.174. BAM!!!! WHAT! Over a second faster than we’ve ever run there before, and almost 2 seconds faster than everyone else in that session. When I saw the dash I was like LOL what the fuck? How can this even be possible? It was a clean lap but hot damn there was no way it felt that fast. It was also a series lap record by roughly half a second. After turning a lap like that I figured the track had to be magic fast. Or someone put a really good set of matched tires on the car.
Either way, a defining moment in the weekend was about to happen. It pains me to think back on this kind of stupidity. I was running side by side with Boake, who happened to be leading a new driver around the track (I didn’t know this at the time), trying to get him to run with me. I wanted a little pre-race racing. If you know what I mean. Anyways, in the silliness of looking over at him and waving at him to try to go, we must have moved over a full car width or more to the left. In fact Boake went into the dirt! If that’s not enough, we got close and banged wheels on each other. Oh how silly. It wasn’t just a rub either. Because of the wheel design (and we’re both running the same wheels) they locked into each other like gears and popped the cars off of each other like a fucking explosion. It ruined my alignment and the Subaru’s, while at the same time destroying all 4 wheels. All of this for no reason, in practice. Because I was more or less bored. We quickly threw a new front wheel on the car and I went out, the fastest laps I was able to do after the damaged was a 1:30.100. Nearly a full second off because of the damaged alignment/damaged ego!
And then there was qualifying. Nothing exciting, I went out there, banged out a few laps (none of which were very fast compared to practice), and we were done. Still got Pole!
Ok, now let’s get on to race 1. As you can imagine from my previous hints, it went well. Yes. It did. Led from the first lap and never looked back. Car was working decently after we re-aligned it at the track, but there were still a few tenths on the table at least. So stupid. Anyways, no real mistakes, we got the win. Awesome! Until.. after the race it turned out one of the side skirts was dragging off the car for some reason. Must have been from rubbing curbing because I never went off? Well it got taped it up before impound which is a big no-no! As a penalty we lost all of our points for the race.
Other than that though, things were looking good for Sunday. Didn’t need to do a whole bunch of work on the car, and the crew were pretty tired (We only had 2 sessions on Saturday but they were the FIRST and LAST of the day – it was almost a 15 hour day just at the track!!!) , so we left after the first race and decided to come in early to finish prep before our sunday race. Bad idea. We got to the track in the morning and one of the guys spotted a disaster. The sway bar bracket on the strut had broken right off. And was totally mangle fucked. Perfect. So we decided that no front sway bar was going to be the only solution.
On the warm up laps admittedly the car didn’t feel too bad without a front bar. It was REALLY loose but had the potential to be fast. We would never find out.
During the warm up lap I was listening to In For The Kill by Le Roux (the gangster remixed version thanks to Dan Cyr), and right before the green dropped I swear I had never been so in the zone. As far as I was concerned, there weren’t any other cars on the track.
I had a fairly awesome start and came out of corner 1 pretty ripping, up on the curbing and then through two at full qualifying speed. The car felt fast despite the looseness.
Sadly though, that’s where the fun would end. Exiting two the car twitched, set it up for braking into 3 and there was no steering. I would later find out the ball joint had failed. I went straight into the tire wall, with an impact of approximately 15G’s. It felt nice!
So I would watch the remainder of the race from the outside of corner 3. So shit. Not that we’ve had the fortune to be in this for the championship this year, but the entire weekend we didn’t get a single point. That’s actually impressive.
We are now trying to figure out why the ball joint failed, and how we can make sure nothing like this ever happens again. At Mosport when you have a suspension failure, it can be pretty dangerous.
I’ll get the video up soon of the start and wreck, it’s pretty wild!
Not to forget about the day to day activities at SG, we’ve had a ton of neat cars through the doors as of late. I just tuned my second rotary, and it didn’t blow up which was nice. We had a gorgeous old school 963 Porsche 911 in that was owned by a cool German dude that just came to Canada (couldn’t speak much English so it was fun figuring out what he wanted for camber and toe) for a corner balance and alignment, it was pretty funny, and the car was really awesome. We’ve had some SR20 fun going on lately, with a Haltech tuned car doing a healthy 360whp at only 12psi on a 3076, a new motor for Jordan’s S14 with Apex HG and HKS cams, Zach’s S14 is almost finished, we got the shortened shaft from driveshaft shop for the HKS dog box and the car running on the Sport 1000, so dyno should be possible this week! The dyno has been busy lately, with supercharged G35 tuning (HKS super with a slightly smaller pulley making an easy 360whp – awesome setup for a Z/G if you don’t want to build your motor), S2K AEM tune that runs like a stock car, and more cars that I can’t remember right now. We even found some time to get little bits done on the SG Roadster – hopefully we’ll get that thing out sliding around soon. More SG Updates soon.