July 2004

July 2004
Wednesday 28th July 2004
I've fitted the alloy bonnet pins, and removed the original bonnet catch assembly, to save some more weight. Pins also allow me to raise the rear of the bonnet, which allows the hot air that accumulates under the bonnet when I'm parked up, to escape, which is better for the engine.

From the datalogger data captured at Curborough a few weeks ago, its clear that the Fiesta is quicker than ever. I can now get from 0 to 60 mph in under 6 seconds!! The slicks are certainly working well.

I've sourced a 2.0 Zetec engine which will form the basis of the new powerplant for next year. I'm going to build a 2.1 litre engine, which will rev to 8000rpm, so I can attain 220BHP, and a higher top speed of 120MPH. Now the chassis is sorted out, I can start concentrating on getting more power from the Zetec. Keep checking the web site for the story of the build.
Friday 23rd July 2004
Took the car off the trailer today, and swapped the Fiesta's wheels front to back to make the wear more even. Wire brushed all the tyres clean, and washed the wheels too, and checked all the suspension. Everything seems fine. Tried sealing two leaks on the exhaust system, both on the system that runs beneath the car. It where the pipes join one another. There are 3 slots cut in to the outer pipe, and the exhaust clamps just dont seem to be able to get a decent seal, no matter how tight I do them up. I've wrapped some spare thermotec bandage around the joints, and refitted the clamps to hold the bandages in place.

Pictures from Shelsley Walsh are now back from Derek Hibbert (In PNG format, not JPEG). He's done a stunning job again. I've resized the pics to get them to a more friendly size. Look on the fourth picture and you can see how she's three wheeling in to the Bottom S, which is a very high-G corner.
Shelsley Walsh July 3rd 2004 Shelsley Walsh July 3rd 2004 Shelsley Walsh July 3rd 2004 Shelsley Walsh July 3rd 2004 Shelsley Walsh July 3rd 2004
Thursday 22nd July 2004
Video clip from my fastest run at Curborough is now available for download. I came 28th overall, which is my first ever top 30 finish, which I'm over the moon about. I've now given up with the microphone supplied with the camera, and for the next outing I'll be using an Electret microphone, which should give better results. The pictures below were taken on the last run of the day, after 40 minutes of heavy rain. You can see from the shot of me turning in for the 2nd lap, the levels of grip we're achieving from the chassis and Michelin N00 compound tyres. There's streams of water running off the car too. In the wet, I set one of the quickest times overall, only beaten by a handful of single seaters and a few saloons. I was only a couple of tenths slower than a four wheel drive Mitsubishi EVO. The picture of the vintage car shows Les Proctor's beautiful 1934 MG, which he turned up with after suffering problems with the OMS race car.
Curborough video clip 2nd practice run, 66.69s (4MB)
Curborough July 18th 2004 Curborough July 18th 2004 Les Proctors MG at Curborough July 18th 2004
Sunday 18th July 2004
1st in class today. It rained in the afternoon and spoilt both the timed runs. But my 2nd practice run I beat my PB from last year by almost 2 seconds with a 66.69s run. The Fiesta was brilliant. Shame the weather turned on us all and made the track so slippery. On my 1st competitve timed run after lunch I went slower as it had started to rain, and I recorded a 67.8 seconds run. I managed to beat John Beardmore's Minor by 0.4 seconds. On my 2nd timed run I posted a 77 second run, which shows how much slower it was for everyone really, and John went round in 80 seconds, which I was most surprised about, as I bullied the Fiesta round and expected to have gone slower than John who was on road tyres. These Michelin moulded slicks are great, with still plenty of grip in the wet. I changed the launch parameters in the ECU and did an appaling start, but it turned out that John was just was quick with his rear wheel driven car, so although it sounded terrible with the engine backfiring and flames spitting from the exhaust, it was actally quite a good launch. In the morning I managed a 2.54 second 64FT time, which is the quickest time ever for the Fiesta. Video of my quickest run in practice will be on the web site in the next few days.
Sunday 11th July 2004
1st in class 15 today (2nd in merged classes 14 and 15), and a new PB of 68.59 seconds (last years PB was 71.15s). A good result for my 1st time on slicks. The first lap was pretty interesting, with no grip from the new tyres, but the 2nd and 3rd laps were much quicker as the tyres started to work.

The final timed run wasn't very tidy, but I still beat my PB with an even quicker time, however it was a scrappy run, I was trying too hard basically. The Fiesta was perfect again, though I could do with some more horsepower to speed her even quicker up the hills, now that the handling is pretty much sorted. No trophy today, as my class was merged with class 14 (up to 1400cc), and the motorbike engined Radical Tracksport fairly thrashed me up the hill. Well done Graham. Sometimes this merging of classes seems totally unfair. I'm baffled as to why organisers merge classes. Besides, I'm really competing against myself this year, trying to beat my personal bests with successes at most events this season.
P1 72.89s
P2 69.73s
T1 68.75s
T2 68.59s

Harewood July 11th 2004 Harewood July 11th 2004 Harewood July 11th 2004 Bernard Armitages Escort at Harewood July 11th 2004 Bernard Armitages Escort at Harewood July 11th 2004 Harewood July 11th 2004
Harewood video clip 2nd competitive timed run, 68.59s (3.62MB)
Monday 5th July 2004
Pictures from Saturday at Shelsley Walsh are now on-line. Also pics from Retro Cars yesterday.
Shelsley Walsh Hillclimb, July 2004

Retro Cars, Santa Pod, July 2004

Sunday 4th July 2004
Shelsley Walsh was a great day out on Saturday. I started off slowly on my first ever visit to the hill, and soon worked my way down to a 37.60 second run, in dry conditions, on the Yokohama tyres. The weather forecast was poor for Shelsley, so I didn't fit the slicks. I'll hopefully run them at Harewood Hillclimb next Sunday (11th July). Its a lovely venue though. The hill requires real commitment from the word go, and it wasn't long before I was approaching the Bottom S flat in fourth gear. I video'd the practice runs and the 1st timed run (38.38s) but the Mustek video recorder ran out of memory at the start of the 2nd and fastest timed run (37.6s). Not to worry, the footage from the 1st timed run gives a pretty good idea of the steepness of the hill.

Hello to everyone who came to see me at the Retro Cars stand at Santa Pod today. I helped John Beardmore out with his stunning Morris Minor, as he attempted three runs on the drag strip. He recorded a respectable 14.444s run on his last run. My quickest at Bruntingthorpe was 14.72s so we're evenly matched. I'll be running against John at Curborough on the 18th July, which should make for a fun event. John won the Best Race Prepared car award, which he thoroughly deserves. Well done John.

Shelsley video clip 1st competitive timed run, 38.38s (2.48MB)