It all began on Thursday morning, Myself and Dave(www.nzparts.co.nz) Who’s ute we borrowed to take Battlecar v2.0 to Taupo headed to our wrecking yard, which is where the car was being stored. Theresa and Sky brought the real Battlecar to meet us, driving another ute on loan(Thanks Matt Sellers for the ute and Chuckie for the trailer!) and helped load up. We headed on down to Taupo, Dave and I went to our batch with all the other S-chasssis crew(Thanks Redwardo for organising it all! Many good times had!). Theresa and Sky went to the track and started setting everything up. We had a pretty quiet night as everyone knew there was to be many crazy nights ahead. Nick and Owen drove MAX170 down arriving around midnight.
Friday morning we set up Max170 and I got out on track about 10am. I was stuggling to link the judged section on the first practice session and the car was really lacking in low down power, not being able to spin up 215′s under 4500rpm!!! On the second session again I was struggling to link the whole section. The third session went a bit better, Tristram(Anrew Redwards Pit cheif/spotter) gave me a few pointers and I managed to link the section, however I was still not hitting the clips how I would like and struggling with the car. Next up was Qualifying and I was not feeling very confident at all, and to top it off we were on our last pair of tyres.
Coming into my first qualifying run, we did one “warm up” lap of the track then came around again into the run that counted then onto a cool down lap to get back into the pits. After coming up to the run that counted I saw 2 cars in front of me, thinking they were on their cool down I tried to overtake them. Russel in the Shirts Addiction S14 saw me coming and pulled out of the way, thanks man! However the next guy, Frank the Tank, was actually on his Qualifying lap and I couldnt get past!!!! So I pulled back and thought I had left enough room, however it wasn’t enough and I caught up to him by the second clip. I straight lined the section and was not happy.
Luckily I got a re-run, Frank actually spun on his warm up lap which slowed things up. On the re-run I was still pretty angry from the earlier mistakes and did not have a good run, It has become apparent to us that Simon can’t drift well when hes angry! I managed to link the section but was well off line and feeling pretty unhappy about it!
The second and third Qualifying run went straight into the run that counted then a cool down lap and into the pits. This format was better than the previous but I had a crap run and had a straight line after the second clip and it wasnt looking like I was going to make the top 16.
The last qualifying run I chucked on some chill out music, turned the Air conditioning on and tryed to take it a bit easier. The car definatly didnt hook up like I wanted it to, but I did lay down an average run. I still wasn’t sure whether it was enough to get me into the top 16, but it was definately the best one out of the 3.
Well I was wrong, my run got me into 6th spot on the grid, lining me up to battle against Alu(Driving Gee Mutch’s D1NZ car). My lead run felt alright, but on my chase run I had a small squiggle through the 2nd clipping point zone, I thought I had lost it but they called a re-run.
On the re-run I felt I had a really solid lead run. The chase felt pretty good too, He pulled a bit of a gap on me before the section though which ultimately let me down. It turned out I lost the battle, the 4th bottom 8 placing in 4 events. It is really starting to frustrate us as the car is really lacking the power it needs to be able to keep up with everyone else, with only 2 weeks until Round 5 Pukekohe we will be stuck with the same package for that round too.
Next update will cover the battle cars adventures over the last couple of days!