Tel's Tales 018: MIRA 3rd August 2013
Due to holidays I had missed the earlier MIRA event so I was eager to get out there again. As we know itsa fast track and has lots of horrible cones to test how well the car wings are attached to the tub. There was a three quarter hour delay to get in and there was a reasonable Westfield turnout with 14 cars, except for Del and Gary who had fallen out with the track and course previously. Scrutineering proved difficult for Kev Jones as there was side to side play on his steering rack as it moved through the alloy mounts. We spent quite a long time trying to put I extra packers and shims to stop the thing moving but there was not much improvement . Eventually Kev convinced them that it was safe and he got out to practice in P3. At the briefing we were told there would be 2 or 3 practice runs and 2 timed runs. I asked if we could have 2 practice and 3 timed runs (at least) but were told that the regs did not allow this but they understood my concern in terms of value for money competition. This was particularly frustrating as the sun was shining and there was a low entry. Martin Hepworth borrowed my big socket and bar to check rear axle nuts were tight and later had a battery/alternator problem. Steve was out with his car and we had now fitted my 3.92 LSD to help top speed today and tomorrow at Hethel. Barry Slingsby was pacing up and down and calculating what time he needed for his 102 points! James Spicer was next to me and had driven to the event so used my trailer to store his bits. Practice saw a few cars swiping the cones just to check if they moved and Barry was seen to T cut and polish off a telltale mark on his car. Barry and I were leading the times right from the start but I had problems with my trickshifter in P2 giving me false neutrals (I nearly had to be towed in as I could not get any gear and stopped mid circuit) so tried a stiffer setting which made things slightly better but not perfect. In the lower capacity John Loudon was going well as was Chris Bennett. Steve set a PB. Unfortunately Pete Goulding spotted a low oil pressure and found that the oil had a bronze tint to it suggesting a bearing/shell was on its way out so he decided to pull out and go home to fix it. We quickly got into T1 whehen the big casualty was Steve who was trying so hard he just touched the grass before the finish and ended up in the tyre wall. Ambulance and recovery truck were needed to sort him out. Luckily he was unhurt but it was quite a big off. The car had a badly bent lower offside wishbone, no front wing, split nose cone and the rear wing hanging off. Now this posed a problem as we were going on to Hethel for the Sunday event. Steve had a spare wishbone but it was at home, miles away in Leeds! After asking if anyone had a spare Keith Adams came to the rescue and said he had one at home and Barry could pick it up and bring ot to Hethel to fit in the morning. What a result and typical of the Westfield spirit! Duck tape sorted the rear wing and nose cone whilst Barry sorted some cycle wings in bright yellow....awesome!
So Steve was out for the day but there was a chance he would be out tomorrow. Barry was quickest on 48.44 secs which beat target of 49.96secs so he put car on trailer (job done) with 102 points in the bag. I still had gear change problems but posted 49.51 secs. Keith Adams was also going well and under 50secs with david Cleaver under 51secs. T2 was the last run that would count and John Loudon made it pay with 49.29secs and under target of 50.22secs followed in his class on the day by Chris Bennett. I got down to 48.09 secs to be quickest Westfield on the day but did not beat target time. Craig Spooner, Graham Frakland, Martin Hepworth and David Reed also posted good times. In my opinion the only downside was that we were all done by about 1445hrs and the sun was still shining so I wanted more runs!
Several of us packed up and set off for Hethel and another tilt at those target times and for me a track I had never driven.
Speed Series Correspondent
Class G competitor