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About this blog

A little Blog to document the progress i make with myself and the new car during my first few outings in the Speed series.

Entries in this blog

 

Anglesey weekend

So the time had come for my first trip to Anglesey, It was going to be either brilliant weather or freezing so earlier in the year asked a few fellow competitors if they would like to share a cottage. In the end it was just myself with wife Michelle and baby Olivia with @Howard (the champion) Gaskin and his son Alex. we arrived at the cottage late afternoon and eptied all the thigs you end up carting around when travelling with a wife baby and dog and i headed up to the track. I was plesantly suprised that i was able to sign on and get scruiteneered so less of a rush on saturday morning.Howard and Alex arrived and we settled down for some food and a good night in a warm comfy bed. Saturday arrived and i was very nervous, like it was my first event. I cycled round the national course with @MarkBishop and boy is it steep up to rocket. first practice came and i managed to get round ok 3 seconds off the target but felt more time to find and was happy that i would be able to get some good points. P2 and T1 were terrible both spining at rocket and ending up cutting the grass a little on one occation. T2,3,4,5 it all started to come together but just not having much experience of the track held me back and finished the day 4th in class but with over 96 points so still on track to keep my above 95 avarage i had set myself at the start of the season. Sunday arrived and after a good night sleep and a couple of pints with the others i was much calmer and felt like my head was back in the game. again i cycled round with Mark and this was really going to be a test of how fast i can go with the long back straight from chaple to rocket, likley to be the fastest i have ever been in the car. P1 and P2 were quite straight forward but with the very windy conditions no records were to be broken. i was 10 seconds away from the target time after the practices. the timed runs and i spun out of the first corner and apparently from the onlookers was alot closer to backing into the barrier than i thought, i anger drove the rest of the lap and suddenly realised how much i could push round chapel and up to rocket. The last run of the day and i felt like i was on it unfortunatly i arrived at rocket to red flags. Mark had out breaked himself into peel and gone straight on into the tyre wall but was ok and the car looked to be ok once back in the pits bar a little amount of fiberglass repair required on the nose. I headed straight to the startline for a re-run and managed to push in to the second car to start again after the red flag. i pull off the line 1st 2nd round the first corner 5th doh. luckily the torque pulled me along and although a little slower no where nere the amount of sideways action it had been all day. I pushed on to the finish and no time was displayed it had been dodgy all afternoon and didnt think i was going any faster so just parked the car on the trailer. As i was straping the car down fellow competitor Leon Franks came up and said well done mate good day. i said i didnt think i had gone any faster. yep 99.89 and beat his previous longton record. so new longton clas record, first in class and also fastest novice on the day something i had been aiming for all season. the only run i recorded all weekend      so the end of my first full season and what a season it has been. if you have never tried to sprint or hillclimb i would 100% say give it a go as @Chris King - Webmaster and Joint North East AO said to me earlier in the year at Blyton you cannot prepare yourself for the rush of putting your visor down and going up against the clock.   see you all next season Simon

syman84

syman84

 

Blyton 12/08/2018

I arrived Saturday afternoon as my wife was working Friday night and couldn't commit to the full weekend, having spent the morning rebuilding the hand break mechanism that failed a few weeks before at the westfield weekend at Blyton. I Arrived and managed to catch the last couple of runs for the day where Garry and Del were having issues with the Cosworth powered car as the alternator was shedding belts as a result of a broken bolt by the time the BBQ was fired up the front end had been stripped and with the help of some easy out they were fixed and ready for Sundays competition, By 9pm the rain started and with varying reports of the forecast for Sunday I was a little apprehensive as i hadn't driven the car in anger in the wet yet. Sunday Morning arrived and it was Wet still raining a little but the forecast had moved and looked like once we have a few cars on track it would dry up. First Practice and it was very sketchy although i had done a lot better than others in the road going classes but still 15 seconds of my PB but nothing counts until the times runs. The track was drying fast and with every run getting quicker P2 was an improvement although still quite slippy and i had a large lock up into Bishops. First timed run and getting down into the mid 70's so the track was starting to get better and improved again in T2 and T3 we then had lunch and it had felt all morning as though the back breaks were binding a little from the hand break assembly that i had only put back together the day before so gave it one more run after lunch and no improvement. A quick strip down and disconnect again and back out in T5 and 3 seconds quicker and down in the region of my PB.  I was then speaking to Steve Carpenter about the weight of my big chunky 15 inch minilight style Compomotive wheels and he said he had a spare set of forces in the back of the truck so a quick swap of the wheels and back out, the car felt so much more alive and the steering so much lighter i did Timed run 6 and 7 on them and on the second run i beat my PB by half a second and got down to 70.68 which is a new Longton and District record. i put my own wheels back on for the last run to see if it was more about track evolution after the rain but i didn't go faster and currently don't know the time until the results officially come out as the time display on the track only works up to timed run 6 something to do with software. Over all great days competition, class win and a decent amount of points.

syman84

syman84

 

Blyton Park WSCC Weekend 13-15 july

The weekend started off on Thursday evening when I dragged the caravan across to Blyton and Dave Cleaver dragged the Westy there as he was double driving with me for the weekend, we got set up and then said hello to the others that had arrived early and were going to be taking part in the track day on the Friday. Friday morning came and it was very overcast and word of rain at home only 40 miles away so prayed it stayed away for the day. The plan was for Dave to get some time in the car and use his experience to make any changes that he thought would make improvement. We let the normal track day first hour rush pass then Dave headed out, three laps later he returned and I thought something was wrong “It’s fine we don’t need to change anything” so that was that, a few runs on track throughout the day to get our eye in for Saturday which was also being run on the outer layout and that was that a great day and a little more confidence into some of the areas of the track that I hadn’t previously had the confidence to attack. Friday night most of the other SS competitors arrived and we managed to sign on and get scrutineered so less of a rush on the Saturday morning.  Saturday and the outer circuit, we set the tyre pressures and applied the sun cream, it was going to be hot. A very straight forward morning practice runs with Dave a second quicker than me, although I had already beat my PB by 2 seconds. We had lunch then set about trying to find a little more time. I went a little faster with a 71.1 so set about trying to get in the 70’s while Dave was on 70.3 aiming to get a sub 70 second time. The last run of the day and Dave did it 69.8, I over drove the car and in true spin to win fashion I came over the finish backwards. So Dave to the honors but showed me what the car was capable of once I had more seat time. On the Saturday evening at prize giving we were notified that the local farmer had ploughed through the main water pipe for the site and therefore there was no water on site at all. So we did what and good speed series competitor would do and cracked open a few cold one’s, we had earned it by having our over sized baby grows on all day. The water was fixed about 8pm and we could start using the showers. A great BBQ where you bring your own food was in full swing with a mix of Marshall's non speed series club members and the speed series competitors all together.     Sunday and the more technical of the days using the eastern circuit. Again we got the car ready and applied the sun cream it was going to be even hotter today. We had P1 and everything was fine Dave then came in from P2 and said one of the rears was binding and under breaking pulling to the left. After investigation we had lost a pin to the hand break rod on the back axle meaning the tension had been taken up on the opposite side. We disconnected the other side as well and cable tied the full assembly up out the way. So a job to do before my next run out. It got hotter through the day and we though the track had past its best. Dave managed to put a 75.47 only 1 tenth of the class record I was currently down in the 77.3 area but still pleased to be 4 second faster than my previous best. Last run of the day and Dave was on a flyer coming down towards the last corner with what looked to be a very quick time but couldn’t get the car slowed down enough and went straight on and through the kitty litter and onto the grass. I lined up knowing that I could go quicker but would be happy to get in the 66’s. bang off the line 64ft of 2.35 and nailed the first technical section and was 1.3 second up in the first sector, I was then brave round curva Grande and managed to get the car turned into the wiggler 2nd,3rd,4th into bishops where I had been scrubbing some speed but carrying 4th through that corner all weekend and a down shift to 3rd and powered out of the corner down and round bunga bunga and flat to the finish managed to get the car slowed and turned in………….75.40......... 1.9 seconds quicker in one run and first in class by 7 one hundredths and only 3 one hundredths off the record. Great weekend great company. Special thanks to the @John Williams - WSCC Competition Secretary and his organisation team and thanks to @tkm_dave as without someone telling me that the car is setup well and then showing me what it was capable of I would never have pushed as hard as I did to make up the time. on the Outer I went 4 seconds faster than my PB and eastern I was 6 seconds faster than my PB of only 6 weeks ago at the longton event.   Let’s do it all again next year.

syman84

syman84

 

Three Sisters 17/06/18

I arrived Saturday evening with Tony Smiley and got settled for the night, A member of staff from the track approached me and asked if many more were likely to arrive that evening being unsure i said probably up to 10pm. He handed me the key and said well can you lock up tonight and open up in the morning.   We walked the track using the double lap formation for this event and soon realised that none of the videos portray just how tight and technical the circuit is. The track has been re-surfaced over the winter as is no longer the 7 different types of blacktop it once was. Sunday morning up at 6 to open the gate and prepped for the day. set off in P1 massive misfire issues managed to get round but nearly 20 seconds off the target time.   Checked everything over added 3L of fuel just in case and went out for P2 a little better but out of the tight hairpin onto the back straight again a bad misfire an improvement but still nearly 7 second off the target. Ian Davenport who was attending who also has a K-series offered up a spare set of pugs in case that was the issue but in conclusion we thought fuel starvation from a standard road size tank and i don't run a swirl pot .over my first few events i have been keeping the fuel level quite high on the gauge as my old car read terribly and was unsure just how much was in the tank.   T1 with a full tank no issues the balance felt good a little loose on the back end but 100% better than the practice runs, over the finish you have to be committed and the track falls away massive lock up and came off the breaks to get it turned away from the wall and in to the pit entry. My time showed on the left 82.13 boom i went mental in my helmet punching the air, Howard Gaskin and Alex Gaskin watched from the pits and walked over as i was heading back to my trailer "enjoy that did you" yes it was brilliant i beat the target time by 0.94 seconds.   T2-6 the weather changed and it got much cooler I felt like i was getting faster but the times weren't showing it, i tweaked a few settings and pressures but didn't help so T1 was my fastest and hopefully if my calculations are correct My first 101 points from an event and new class record.   Overall a fantastic day a class win points in the bag and a new class record. Lots different to the circuits I have driven so far, I'm having a month off now until the WSCC Blyton weekend with a few jobs to do on the car.Just want to say a massive thank you to Longton & District Motor Club for putting this event on with so few entries. It was a great event so if you have time please support the other three sisters events.

syman84

syman84

 

Silverstone Stowe 3/6/18

Thought i would document my sprint attendance and maybe entice some other fresh faces to the Paddock it really is a blast    Well what a feeling. First trophy. Home from a very successful outing at Silverstone today with 6 in my class of what looked to be some fast caterham's, the only goal I had set myself for the day was a 60 second run. Starting the day with a P1 time 61.8 felt good and new once I had found my way round a very confusing course (everyone else agreed) it was possible. Second practice was slightly improved with a 60.3. After lunch and our first timed runs it had got really hot and thought like with blyton 2 weeks ago we would probably go slower, In T1 I managed a 59.45 close at the time to some of to 2.0L boys and 2 seconds faster than my closest class rival. T2 I tried a different approach to the last complex and It didn't work out going a tenth slower with a 59.59. Over all a great day and my first class win with a pot. Still work to be done on myself and the car but getting more and more comfortable with it on every outing. Well done to all the other winners Howard Gaskin Mathew Haynes and Terry Everall Cheers

syman84

syman84

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