On Sunday, there were 22 cars running in my series, the Super Production Challenge. I knew it would be extremely tough to finish in the top five or six cars, as Pat had done a few weeks earlier driving my car at Sanair. I set the 8th fastest time in the morning practice, but only managed to qualify 13th, as the other drivers shaved off more time than I did from one session to the next. My exhaust pipe was now almost completely broken, but Choo helped me secure it in place with some hardware I had bought at Canadian Tire.
There were to be two 10-minute races, followed by a 35-minute long feature race. In the first race, I did OK, but on two occasions I was passed on the start-finish straight due to having trouble shifting into 3rd gear. I re-passed one of the drivers, but not the other. I finished 11th in the first race.
In the second mini-sprint, I was running 11th when I had contact with the same car as the day before! There had been room to pass at the entrance of the carousel, and then the other guy shut the door. All I could do at that point was slide into his wheel. This really mangled my wheel, but I made it to the end of the race, in 13th position.
Luckily, I had a spare wheel, although my tires were looking quite second-hand. I headed out for the final race in 13th. The race was mostly uneventful. I had a small contact with Alex Lapierre's TSX entering the bus stop in traffic. I did not drive a great race. I had little confidence to aggressively pass rookies after they constantly closed the door on me. I just wanted to finish the race with the car relatively intact. A few times, the car would pop out of gear in 3rd. At least the exhaust was holding together. I managed to hold off a K24-powered Civic behind me, but I could not pass the Golf that had been running in front of me for the last few laps. I ended up in 13th position. I was disappointed that I had not managed to catch and pass the drivers ahead of me, as they were within sight at the finish. I really hoped I would do better than this at my home track, but I just wasn't patient enough and allowed myself to be taken over by the red mist.
On the brighter side, at least I finished every session and managed to bring the car home more or less in one piece. I will need 2 new tires, a new exhaust, and a new 3rd gear synchro, before the next race.
|The car at home|
Here are some photos from Flagworld.com and Montreal Racing:
And here is what I did to my wheel: