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Nitrolympx - Hockenheim

Hockenheim race track in Germany always a fun place to race, partly because of the facility with its grandstands built to F1 standards and completely overlooking and surrounding the track and partly because of the large and enthusiastic crowd.

The weather forecast for the weekend was very good, high temperatures every day, little did we know on Thursday how much this would affect the track and our results.


As in Mantorp our plan was to begin with a conservative set up in the car in order to get down the track and record run data without smoking the tyres.  In our first qualifying session that was successful, the result was a 5.48, good for the setup we used and qualifying us solidly in 3rd place.  Now in the next three sessions of qualifying we could build on that run to try to improve our time and position. For the second qualifier we could see that we needed to be more aggressive with the engine.  Great start to the run but at 400 ft the tyres started to smoke as we overpowered the track, maybe because it was a different lane to the earlier run or maybe we retuned for too much power or maybe the track temperature rose and traction decreased as can sometimes happen with the best prepared tracks.


Third qualifier for us and after yesterdays efforts this run would be in direct comparison with the first run but with a small increase in power from the first run to see if we can improve the time in that lane, which we are beginning to realise is the better lane.  The result is no improvement, the car starts to shake its tyres and then goes into smoke and when I pedal the throttle it just drops some cylinders due to decreased load.  A disappointing 5.89 at a low terminal speed after I aborted the run.

Last qualifier and although we are still comfortably qualified in 4th place we still need to increase our performance for race day.  We make more changes to the engine setup and half expect it to try to smoke the tyres, but at least this time I will be ready for it.  So far this weekend we have had no engine damage and no parts need replacing which is a major step forward from the beginning of the season.  The run goes as expected, yes it smokes the tyres and yes I pedal the throttle just right and it recovers, the ET is slightly down still (after smoking the tyres) but the finish line speed is up.  Now the fastest of our qualifiers shows that our changes are at least making the car work well in the second half of the track.

Sunday - Raceday

High hopes this morning as our first round is earlier in the day we expect the track temperature to be lower and that should help us with grip and stop the tyres smoking.

Our first round opponent is Fred Hansen from Norway with American Will Hanna tuning his car which has so far not run as good as usual.  Sure enough he does not run as good as his qualifying time, while we make our best run so far, 5.41 ET for the round win and low ET for the weekend.  This is very important as the low ET is worth 5 points in the Championship.  On to the second round as it is now hotter and the track temperature has risen we know we will struggle with traction and I will have to back pedal the throttle at some point but hopefully the car will pick up in the second half of the track as it did on the last qualifier.

Well it went as expected, except when I pedalled the throttle it did not quite stop the tyres spinning and I had to sit in the car and watch Peter Schofer just drive away from me as if he had another gear.  Very frustrating!!

Overall a very good weekend for us.  No engine parts to replace for the first time.  A consistent performance all weekend, a new track record, number 2 in points for the FIA Championship and still a very outside chance of wresting the Championship title from Timo, so everything still to play for at Santa Pod for the 5th and final round this year.

See You There
Dave Wilson