Last issue concentrated on
just one thing, the 2003 Open Track Challenge. This issue wants to address
the rest of the things going on with Kryderacing. There are a lot, both
continuations of old items and new additions.
RACES, PEOPLE, ETC
* The first SCCA National of the year featured a couple of vehicles competing with Kryderacing colors. And our involvement extended beyond the race cars. The event was run by the Mahoning Valley Region. Sandi was the Race Chairman. Reed served as the Pace Car driver, driving the Kryderacing Infiniti M30. Since the event was at Nelson Ledges, we also had the Kryderacing store and gas pumps to run. Matt Miller was busy crewing on Bill Pintaric’s Kryderacing prepped, GT4 classed Datsun 510. There was a big GT4 entry and Bill qualified fifth. Something broke in the engine during Saturday’s qualifying session. Investigation revealed a broken rocker arm. Repairs were made and fingers were crossed. On Sunday Bill ran all of the race, and took the checkered flag, in fourth place. The result was a good one, considering the overall field of competitors. But his race was slightly boring because he was unable to challenge anyone in front of him while being well ahead of his pursuers. On Monday we looked further into the engine and discovered additional valve train damage. The head was removed and sent to the machine shop along with new parts. Repairs were made, the engine was assembled, and additional tests were run to determine why we were getting the damage. We found a major adjustment was required in both the cam timing and engine-timing advance. Both of the original settings were as specified in the data were originally received with the car. But they were very different than anything Reed was used to seeing with his old “Z” engines. Some additional research lead to the belief that Reed’s numbers were closer to correct. The proof would come at the upcoming Mid-Ohio National.
* Gary Martz also was entered in this Mahoning Valley National. Kryderacing offers Gary occasional assistance with his E-Production class Mazda RX-7. Gary qualified second in class. He took the lead, and eventual win, when the initial leader pulled into the pits early in the race.
* This National race was also significant for several reasons. First of all, the entry wasn’t down. In each of the three area SCCA Divisions (Northeast, CenDiv, and Southeast) there has been a trend towards smaller fields in 2003. Race Chairman Sandi’s weekend stayed the same as last year, which is the best anyone has done. Sandi partly attributes this to sending out actual entry forms instead of postcards. In the past, the cost of sending out close to 3,000 entry forms was immense. Most Regions have opted to go with postcards notifying racers of the event and instructing them how to obtain an entry form, either on the internet or through the mail. Sandi also did that, but she automatically sent complete entry forms to past entrants and local drivers. The results speak for themselves.
* Another significant item was the number of new track records. Portions of the track were repaved late last year. The effect wasn’t great from an “percentage of track paved” standpoint, but the areas resurfaced resulted in the fastest lap times ever in a total of nine classes. And of major significance was the first official sub-minute lap. Ashen Yelkin recorded a 59.997 second lap in his Formula Atlantic. He did it while chasing Jim Opperman, who had run a sub-minute lap in qualifying (unofficial). Yelkin’s effort not only got him the overall lap record, but also the win when he passed Opperman on the last lap.
* Another SCCA National was run on the May 31-June 1 weekend. This one was at Mid-Ohio and both Bill Pintaric and Gary Martz were active. So was the weather. Saturday was cold, wet, and windy. Qualifying lap times were slow for most of the groups. Sunday was cold and windy, but dry. Bill was near the back of his grid because he had opted to just put in a few laps in the bad conditions on Saturday. During the race he passed more than half the field and had a great time doing it. His goal was to beat the three other Datsun 510’s in the race. He passed the last of the three with only a lap to go. Also of significance was the changes made to the engine since the last event. Per Bill; the car ran smoother, faster, and sounded better. He didn’t beat his best lap time (he was busy passing cars), but his last ten laps were the quickest ten laps he had ever run at Mid-Ohio. Also, the max rpm on the long straight was up 200 over previous races. And the engine checked out okay after the weekend. Looks like we went the right direction with the engine.
* Gary was closer to the pole at the start of his race. It looked as if every major E-Production contender from last year‘s Run-Offs was in attendance. Gary initially was running in sixth and seventh. But that wasn‘t really so bad since he was involved in a heated nose-to-tail battle line of cars which extended all the way forward to the leader. When the race was over Gary had moved up to third.
* A new Kryderacing client, Mike Olivier, attended his SCCA Driver’s Schools and ran his first race back in March. Mike brought his Honda Civic to Kryderacing during the winter. After initial discussions it was decided to prepare the car for the Showroom Stock C class. This meant the minimum in expense and modifications, which is a good idea for a beginner. Besides installing the cage, racing seat, competition seat belts, window net, decals, and a couple of other routine safety upgrades the car was also allowed what SCCA calls a “trunk kit”. Basically it is a short, specific list of items allowed on a certain vehicle to make it competitive in its class. Mike’s Civic was allowed Koni shocks, anti-sway bars, and wheel upgrades. Several unexpected movements in the Driver’s School schedules for the spring resulted in Mike going to Gateway (on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River from St. Louis) for a combination Double Driver’s School/Regional weekend. Matt Miller went along to assist him and a couple of other Kryderacing friends. Everyone in the group passed the schools. Mike hung around and won his Regional race on Sunday. It was a great start for Mike.
* Mike’s second Regional race weekend was a little different. It was at Nelson Ledges on Memorial Day weekend. Gateway is basically flat with slow, 180-degree turns (except for the oval turn, which is 180-degrees but not slow). Fast laps at Gateway demand a precise approach to vehicle placement using well timed braking and quick vehicle rotations. Nelson Ledges has fast sweepers and considerably higher speeds. The demands on driver and car are very different. Mike set goals of 1:28 in the Saturday qualifying race and 1:27 in Sunday‘s feature 20-lap event. He achieved his Saturday goal. On Sunday he found himself in the middle of a three-way battle for the entire race. He was very busy. Reed never signaled him he had easily met his goal lap time because he didn‘t want to distract him. When the race was over, he had a new personal best of 1:26.2. His next race on the schedule is early in July at Mid-Ohio. We think he is going to do very well on that track.
* Reed missed the One Lap of America this year, but one of our past co-drivers represented Kryderacing. Steve Ahlgrim was running this event in his Corvette ZR-1 when Reed first met him in 1994. They became good friends. Steve has driven with Reed in profession races and has rented Kryderacing race vehicles for his personal use on several occasions. We always liked working with Steve because he is a great driver. Since 1994, he had continued to drive the One Lap with his brother, Scott. As time went on, the ZR-1 was parked in favor of a Mustang and later a Honda S2000. Meanwhile the ZR-1 was used by Steve as his everyday vehicle. For 2003, he brought the ZR-1 back to One Lap. Kryderacing supplied Steve with some Baer Brake upgrades and Performance Friction brake pads. They must have worked because Steve recorded a great seventh place overall finish. Steve had finished third with the same car in 1993, but the competition level has increased dramatically over the past ten years. Steve has also put 150,000+ miles on his ZR-1 over those years. Congratulations Steve.
* Two TrackTime Performance Driving Schools have been run so far this year. The first one was at one of everyone’s favorite race tracks, Road America’s Elkhart Lake. Sandi was our representative since Reed was at Homestead Speedway, Matt Miller was at the NASA event at BeaveRun, and Matt Carson was attending Guard Duty. Saturday featured beautiful weather and very few problems on the track. But there was a little mechanical work for Sandi. She changed someone’s brake pads. Having been around race cars and the shop for years, this wasn’t a problem for her. But some of the onlookers were surprised and impressed. Since there wasn’t much work she also had a chance to visit with numerous friends we haven’t seen since last year. Sunday was a different story. It was cold and wet. A look at the forecast indicated things were going to get worse. A lot of people left early. The second school of 2003 was at Gingerman Raceway. Reed and Sandi attended. The weather was cool and sometimes a little damp. Reed and Sandi did some business. Dick and Pat Sonntag always have a brake job for us at this track. This time it was changing pads on the front of their Porsche.
* Matt Miller attended our initial 2003 NASA events for the season. Kryderacing has signed on to provide trackside assistance to the events put on by the Ohio/Indiana Chapter of NASA. The first two events were at Mid-Ohio and BeaveRun. Both were successful from a NASA standpoint. And it appears we are gaining a couple of new customers through this affiliation. If you are interested in NASA, contact Lawrence Mansier at 330-242-5008 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
* The first two events of the 2003 Kryderacing Regional Championship Series at Nelson Ledges Road Course are also in the record books. We did not have any cars participating at the first event, but, as reported above, Mike Olivier was running his Kryderacing prepped Honda Civic in the second. The first event was a Double Regional put on by the Steel Cities Region. The second was a single-event race weekend (but double points) organized by the Finger Lakes Region.
* The third event at Nelson Ledges will be another double race. It is scheduled for June 14-15 and will be handled by the Neohio Region. Duane Martin has rented the Nissan NX2000 and will be running it in the ITS class. Reed has decided to take the Kryderacing Nissan 240SX out for its initial 2003 shakedown and will be running against Duane in the ITS class. Mike Olivier isn’t planning on racing, but he will be testing on the Friday before the weekend.
* Kryderacing is happy to announce the return of one of our favorite sponsors for the Kryderacing Series, Mazza Wineries. Mazza Wineries has provided some special wines for our banquets in the past and will be doing the same again in 2003. Thanks, Bob.
* While we are on the subject of Nelson Ledges, a few words need to be said about the Kryderacing store and gas facilities. Last year it became obvious that a new fuel tank and store layout was necessary. The old trailer we operated our store out of was falling apart and newer safety regulations needed to be addressed for the fuel tanks. Since then things have moved very slowly. The old trailer has been scrapped and the tanks stored until a new location and cement tubs can be installed. Part of the problem has been a lack of proper information concerning what is legal and what is hearsay. Sandi recently started doing her own investigating. The big “catch” is that Ohio race tracks have different rules than anyone else dispensing gas in the state of Ohio. Because of these differences, a lot of the supposedly expert advice we received previously was misleading. Hopefully we are on the correct path now. In the meantime, look for us operating the store out of our own vehicle trailers. We are also selling gas, but until the tanks return, it will be out of 5 gallon jugs. We can deliver larger quantities if they are pre-ordered.
* A little earlier it was mentioned Reed would be shaking down the Nissan 240SX. We have made a few changes to the car over the winter months. The changes seem minor but we hope they make a noticeable improvement. The car has been reserved by Bill Schauer for a couple of races later in the season and we want to make sure the car is ready. Bill has more seat time in this car than anyone and historically has been faster than anyone. The test is to make sure he is happy with the changes. At least that’s Reeds story. If things work good, Reed may continue the “shake-down” at the 4th of July weekend Regions at Mid-Ohio.
* That 4th of July Weekend could be a very busy one for Kryderacing. Besides the possibility of Reed running the 240SX; Matt Miller will be running his Mazda RX7, Mike Olivier (Honda Civic) will drive Mid-Ohio for the first time, and Ray Barnhart may return after a year’s absence to drive his BMW. Ray has been off the track for a while because of a job change, but is anxious to get back racing.
* Dave Pintaric, Bill’s brother is showing a great deal of interest in going racing. While he shops for a car, he will be attending the SCCA Driver’s School at Gingerman on June 27-28. He will probably follow that up with the July 19-20 Nelson Ledges school. For the schools he will be using the Kryderacing prepped Nissan NX2000 (which is actually owned by his brother Bill).
* The Pintaric brothers have also requested our presence at one of their company outings. Instead of a golf outing, they have decided to visit the race track for a day. They initially tried this with a couple of their employees during the spring and it was very well received. The event is scheduled for late July at Nelson Ledges. Their company is called WRP and deals with investments. The number of employees they have is significant and we may be giving a lot of rides during the course of the day. We thank Bill and Dave for including us.
* A similar outing is scheduled for October 30th at Willow Springs. This will be the third year Russ Wilson and a group of his friends have had a “track day” at Willow Springs. The first year was on the big course while last year we used the “Streets of Willow”. Both were successful events. We will be back on the big course this fall.
* Elliott Fisher has had his Mustang in our shop a couple of times over the past year. Matt has been helping with some major rear suspension revisions. The car competes in the American Iron class at NASA events. After its most recent visit to the shop it competed in a Saturday/Sunday double event at BeaveRun. There was a big field. Elliott finished 1st (4th overall) and 2nd (6th overall) in his two races.
* A Camaro is scheduled into the shop for similar suspension analysis. Some of our recent business has been originating from car owners who buy a lot of great parts for their vehicles but have difficulty making them all work well together. Actually, a lot of our longtime clients started with us for the same reasons. Buying the latest performance enhancer is easy. And sometimes the installation can be relatively simple. When the car goes to the track the first time with these changes it is usually faster. But it is also usually not optimized for the changes. That‘s where Kryderacing can help.
* Well, the long awaited dif repair is finally completed. Last November we took the dif from the Nissan 240SX to Cuyahoga Falls Transmission. Doug (owner of the shop) is a racer and good friend of one of our crew members from a few years ago, Chris DeMascio and does an excellent job of transmission repairs and setting up racing difs. We told Doug there was no hurry - at the time the 2003 race season seemed a long way off. Thru a mishap of incorrect parts being received, several times and Doug being busy with projects that needed to get out the door our little repair job took 7 months. We now have the dif back and hopefully it will be installed for Reed's race at Mid Ohio over the 4th of July weekend.
* The week-end of May 31-June 1 was busy. Bill Pintaric ran the National at Mid-Ohio. The Nonnamaker race team had a media day at Kempthorn Motors and invited Kryderacing to participate. Matt 1 went to Rhode Island to visit Kim and attend her mother’s college graduation. Matt 2 was off for his 2 week stint of Army Reserve training. That left Reed & Sandi to handle Mid Ohio and the media day. Saturday was miserable at both locations weather wise. Bill only went out for qualifying and then only ran enough laps to qualify for Sundays race. Sandi's day was a better. She was inside a building and out of the cold rain. Sunday was much better (well drier). Sunny, but very cool and windy. Bill started near the back and worked his way up to 14th overall and 8th in GT4. Gary Martz was also racing his EP Mazda RX7. Gary finished 3rd.
* The Inaugural SCCA National
at BeaveRun was run on June 21-22. They had an excellent turn out - close
to 200 cars. Both Bill Pintaric and Gary Martz were part of the crowd.
Bill was running 4th in GT4 when the engine went off key. He ended up finishing
7th. While doing our post race inspection, we found that a valve rocker
had come off. Gary Martz finished 2nd in EP. Matt 1 went to BeaveRun
to assist Bill & Gary. Sandi & Matt 2 went to VIR for a TrackTime
Performance Driving School. VIR is truly a beautiful facility.