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Old 07-03-2009
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Post Road America July

Event Name: Road America July. Organization: Skip Barber Racing School LLC.

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Old 07-04-2009
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Re: Road America July

HARSHA'S BIG WIN!

Harsha Sen scored his first open class Skippy win today at Road America, defeating Jeff Kaiser and Robert La Rocca in a great battle to the finish. For most of the race, it didn't appear from the stands that Harsha had the speed to get to the lead. But, he closed the gap to the front two, learned, waited, and with only a few laps to go, made his move into 2nd. He took the lead with two to go, then lost the lead. Waiting for the right moment, Harsha retook the lead half way into the final lap, and came into the final corner with a three car gap, enough to win in style ahead of two experienced fast guys. Harsha also set fast lap of the race, and quickest lap of the weekend so far at 2:34.7!

Well done buddy! Proud of you!

More weekend photos to be posted on the photo galleries page. http://www.teamjuicyracing.com/forums/gallery/index.php
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Old 07-04-2009
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Thumbs up Re: Road America July

Well done, indeed! Congratulations, Harsha! Long overdue! If I were still up there, I'd buy the first Jager.
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Old 07-05-2009
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Re: Road America July

Great job, Harsha!!!! Congrats and way to go.
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Old 07-05-2009
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Re: Road America July

Congratulations, Harsha! The first win is a thrill, isn't it!
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Old 07-06-2009
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Re: Road America July

CONGRATS, CONGRATS, CONGRATS.... Long time coming and truly deserved. You are NOW one of the FAST GUYS. You will now have a bulls eye on your back.
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Old 07-06-2009
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Re: Road America July

Congrats Harsha! Road America is an excellent place for one's first WIN. Job well done.
JP
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Old 07-06-2009
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Re: Road America July

Congratulations Harsha! That s an event you will never forget.
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Old 07-06-2009
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Re: Road America July

Late to the party here...
Bravo and Congratulations Harsha! So happy for you.
It's about time eh? Pictures look great! And fastest lap!!
Wish I'd been there to congratulate you in person. Well done!
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Old 07-07-2009
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Re: Road America July

Thanks very much guys for all the love and support. Yes, this win was VERY long in coming (I had 2 wins in now-defunct Sportsman class but I don't count those). Some of us have harder heads than others. WAY WAY harder. Like depleted uranium. I finally got tired of going slower the harder I tried, so after Road America last summer, I decided to give racing a break. Just wasn't fun any more. Over the winter I traveled to the Himalayas and spent a month in a remote Shambhala Buddhist monastery at 14,000 feet where the monks eat a strictly vegetarian diet and meditate outside in -30F wearing nothing more than a coarse hand-woven jute smock. There I attained enlightenment. I couldn't quite get the freezing meditation thing down but I believe the lack of oxygen caused a permanent anoxic injury to the part of my brain that controls braking. Since then, despite intense physical therapy, I can only stay on the brake for a certain period of time, and then my foot falls off. And it seems to be getting worse. Really a problem on the street, where I've had to stay below 35 mph in town and use downshifts to come to a complete stop, but wow! how it has helped my lap times on the track!

I dedicate this win to the entire contingent of Skip Barber instructors on both coasts, who through their passion, commitment to teaching, careful analysis and observation (even when tired at the end of the day), friendship, and unrelenting bombardment, finally broke through my uranium skull (which yes, was forged in another galaxy and brought here on a meteorite). The list is too long to mention but you guys know who you are. Thanks so much for this incredible gift.

p.s. Gerardo, thanks for such a nice post, for taking all those pics and posting them to the gallery. You have talent with the camera, a great eye for composing a picture. But most importantly, I'm not sure that you've known how valuable your mentoring has been for me. Now you do.
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Old 07-07-2009
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Re: Road America July

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slowhands View Post
...Buddhist monastery at 14,000 feet where the monks eat a strictly vegetarian diet and meditate outside in -30F wearing nothing more than a coarse hand-woven jute smock...
Geez - I tried that too. All I got was a rash and gas. NOBODY beats me for DFL...
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Old 07-07-2009
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Re: Road America July

Hello everyone!

We are new to the Skip Barber "family". My son Trent raced for his first time at RA this past weekend and he had an absolute blast!
We met so many nice people! The phenomenal instructors, mechanics, and staff were second to none. Everyone treated Trent very well even though he is a newbie.

All the drivers that we met (as well as their families) couldn't have been nicer to us! It was just an amazing weekend all the way around and our family is looking forward to attending more races in the future.

Thanks again to all of you. You guys really made us feel right at home. What a crazy,hilarious group you are!

Congrats to all the drivers! See you at Mont Tremblant...

Kim Hindman
(Trent's Mom)
Wayside, NJ
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

Welcome to the family, Kim and Trent. Sounds like the tar and feather hazing ritual didn't put you off much! Your next challenge will be competing against each other on the famous Tremblant luge ride down the mountain. Almost as much fun as racing at the track.

Kidding aside, great to hear you had a good time and looking forward to meeting you in Canada.

Pat
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

The MX-5 drivers had a blast, what a group. Thanks to all for all the fun.
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

I had some of the best racing all year and despite my practice crash in the Kink on Friday, had a blast. Thanks to the safety team for getting to me quickly. I was fine, just p!$$ed, but hey, it happens in racing. I won't make that mistake again, that's for sure!

Thanks to everyone for a great time, and for Andrew for some REALLY close and CLEAN racing! See you all again in August!
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

Quote:
Originally Posted by dalyduo View Post
Welcome to the family, Kim and Trent. Sounds like the tar and feather hazing ritual didn't put you off much! Pat
Pat, you were not there, but I was very impressed by Trent's maturity. He is young (12?) and fast -- and did not win a race, but showed disappointment and readiness for the next opportunity in the right amounts.
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

Thanks Ted! Trent sounds like a good kid with a great family... So he was faster than you and you didn't tar and feather him?!

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Pat, you were not there, but I was very impressed by Trent's maturity. He is young (12?) and fast -- and did not win a race, but showed disappointment and readiness for the next opportunity in the right amounts.
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

If the 12 year old son beats the parent, is there a skirt involved in this process? I'm still new, and I have some nephews that will be coming along in a few years.
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

If you're faster you can wear anything you want.
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If the 12 year old son beats the parent, is there a skirt involved in this process? I'm still new, and I have some nephews that will be coming along in a few years.
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMather View Post
I had some of the best racing all year and despite my practice crash in the Kink on Friday, had a blast. Thanks to the safety team for getting to me quickly. I was fine, just p!$$ed, but hey, it happens in racing. I won't make that mistake again, that's for sure!

Thanks to everyone for a great time, and for Andrew for some REALLY close and CLEAN racing! See you all again in August!
great time, congrats on your win Phil

am processing race chatter, will post soon, along with a more detailed post.

Thanks Skip Barber for a great weekend.

Left WI yesterday at 10:30 AM, home in CT at 2 AM last night, great drive, zero traffic, gorgeous day and night
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

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If the 12 year old son beats the parent, is there a skirt involved in this process? I'm still new, and I have some nephews that will be coming along in a few years.
Only if you shave your legs.
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

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More weekend photos to be posted on the photo galleries page. http://www.teamjuicyracing.com/forums/gallery/index.php

Thanks for all the great photos!

I stole some and posted them on my face book
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Old 07-08-2009
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Re: Road America July

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Only if you shave your legs.
That how we think in Kentucky, I guess.
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Old 07-09-2009
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Re: Road America July

Speaking of Highjack...


Harsha... I am away for some rest and relaxation and just signed on. CONGRATULATIONS!!! Way to go and well deserved.

The Halibut is on me. What kind of incense were you burning?

Great job!
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Old 07-10-2009
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Western Re: Road America July

Hey gang,

That was a great first-race weekend for me. Actually, there was a lot of new stuff for me to digest...first time in a skippy car in almost 20 mos, first auto race ever, first time to drive at RA . Thanks for everyone's patience, especially during the Thursday lapping sessions. My first thought was, "Whoa, I'm way out of my league here..."

I think I finally found my sea legs by the end of the weekend. My starts and re-starts were horrible, so I basically ended up battling for last place among those who hadn't spun or crashed in both races. But they were great battles. As each race went on, I knew I was faster than the guy ahead of me; I just couldn't get past. It was an intense exercise in trial and error race craft and strategy...how long to draft, how close to draft, when to pop, when to hang back, how far to hang back, etc. I guess that should have been frustrating, but it was all new to me. I felt my nervousness melting away with every lap. I finished about a tenth of a second behind my closest competitor in each race...and I desperately wanted a few more laps. Too much fun.

Special thanks to Neal Agran, Ted Jewell, and all the Skip Barber instructors for guiding me through the weekend.

Congrats to Harsha on the first open class win. I didn't realize it was such a big deal at the time; Hell, I figured you won all the time! The story about your three-day school was particularly motivating to me.

My only complaint all weekend was that the air conditioning was broken in the #93 car. I can't wait to do it all again! If I were a professional bank robber, I'd be at every race.

Cheers from Austin, Texas.

Chris
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Old 07-10-2009
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Re: Road America July

True Story: Many years ago after about half the race weekends in the Eastern series the FBI appeared at the track asking if any of the racers were paying cash... Turned out there was one guy always using cash who had been robbing local banks to pay for his seat time. The tip off was the surveillance foortage that showed him wearing a nomex headsock at each robbery. (DOH!) The police then realized all the towns with banks that were robbed were also near race tracks having Skip Barber race weekends. So the gettaway car was going fast but not really leaving the scene of the crime.

Moral of the story... If you're going to rob banks to pay for your racing... bag up the headsock, driving suit, and helmet before you start!

Quote:
Originally Posted by HorsepowerWhisperer View Post
If I were a professional bank robber, I'd be at every race.

Cheers from Austin, Texas.

Chris
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Old 07-10-2009
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Re: Road America July

Quote:
Originally Posted by HorsepowerWhisperer View Post
Congrats to Harsha on the first open class win. I didn't realize it was such a big deal at the time; Hell, I figured you won all the time! The story about your three-day school was particularly motivating to me.

My only complaint all weekend was that the air conditioning was broken in the #93 car. I can't wait to do it all again! If I were a professional bank robber, I'd be at every race.
Chris,

Thanks for sharing your impressions of the weekend. You are clearly a true enthusiast at heart. Based on what I am hearing, this is my advice:

Earn, beg, borrow, (but do not steal) every cent you can and race! This time will not last forever, nor will it come back. It is so much more than a sport, it is a metaphor for life and it can put you in direct contact with the flow that animates all living things. I always used to think that birds flew and porpoises swam because that's just the way they evolved and they don't know anything else, now I watch them and I can see that while much of their activity has a goal of getting to food or getting from A to B, some of it is just for the sheer fun and pleasure of knowing they can. As I was flying through the Kink faster than I ever have before, with the turn-in just so and the car steering on rails stone-cold-dead flat for the first time ever, I really didn't care how the race ended, I was just exhilarated by the freedom of being able to do this so well. I felt like those hawks that spend whole summer days circling on risers and then cascading to earth. Who cares about the points, I can fly in a race car! Damn that's awesome!

I was the slowest person in my 3-day until the afternoon of the third day, and 20 sec off the pace in my first 2 race weekends, of course DFL. I was not one who showed any "natural ability" in the beginning. I labored for a year at the back of the grid. That is why it doesn't bother me when my pals rib me about it taking so long for me to win my first race. I am still pinching myself that I can actually drive like this. If Skip Barber can teach me to drive, they can teach anyone.
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Old 07-10-2009
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Re: Road America July

http://www.silverfoxracing.blogspot.com/

Ok be nice, its my first video, so it's raw. I tried getting the "chatter" included, but I'm a chatter noob.

Feed back is appreciated. Instructors please help.
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Old 07-10-2009
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Re: Road America July

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...I was the slowest person in my 3-day until the afternoon of the third day, and 20 sec off the pace in my first 2 race weekends, of course DFL. I was not one who showed any "natural ability" in the beginning. I labored for a year at the back of the grid. That is why it doesn't bother me when my pals rib me about it taking so long for me to win my first race. I am still pinching myself that I can actually drive like this. If Skip Barber can teach me to drive, they can teach anyone...
Harsha, I believe you are now duly authorized to change that avatar once again to one from the victory lap waving the checkerd flag.
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Old 07-12-2009
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Harsha, I believe you are now duly authorized to change that avatar once again to one from the victory lap waving the checkerd flag.
Realized I never said WTG H buddy, probably because I said it so many times at the track, epic battle, well deserved,
you have been working hard on your driving, nice payoff bub.
Here is a modded shot and possible avatar...you can add your own filters Claude
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  #31  
Old 07-13-2009
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Re: Road America July

One more thing --- this year the length of the races returned to ten laps (up from nine laps the past couple of years). That made for forty miles of racing, and at Mont Tremblant that would mean races of fifteen laps. Might we actually see an increase to fifteen laps for our Mont Tremblant races?
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Old 07-13-2009
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Re: Road America July

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Originally Posted by WatertownNewbie View Post
One more thing --- this year the length of the races returned to ten laps (up from nine laps the past couple of years). That made for forty miles of racing, and at Mont Tremblant that would mean races of fifteen laps. Might we actually see an increase to fifteen laps for our Mont Tremblant races?
Arn't the races essentually timed races? "Officials" look at lap times and determine the number of laps that would fit in the window.
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Old 07-13-2009
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Re: Road America July

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Arn't the races essentually timed races? "Officials" look at lap times and determine the number of laps that would fit in the window.
Yes and no. The size of the fuel cell plays into the equation too, as do the lengths of the warm-up and cool-down laps. But more to the point is the fact that races at Road America used to be ten laps and they were shortened the past couple of years to nine laps. Drivers at other tracks (Sebring and Mont Tremblant come to mind) noticed that race lengths were dropping by a lap or two. It might not seem like much, but a race weekend is expensive, and an additional lap really does make a difference (not to mention improve customer morale).
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Old 07-14-2009
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Re: Road America July

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Originally Posted by WatertownNewbie View Post
Yes and no. The size of the fuel cell plays into the equation too, as do the lengths of the warm-up and cool-down laps. But more to the point is the fact that races at Road America used to be ten laps and they were shortened the past couple of years to nine laps. Drivers at other tracks (Sebring and Mont Tremblant come to mind) noticed that race lengths were dropping by a lap or two. It might not seem like much, but a race weekend is expensive, and an additional lap really does make a difference (not to mention improve customer morale).
copy all that Ted, fuel is certainly the limiting factor. Both my races (G3) were run without any yellows (well done all) and my car was sputtering from fuel starvation on both cool-down laps. If there were more groups, as at past weekends, time becomes a factor in race length also.

15 laps at Tremblant? That sounds really nice
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Re: Road America July

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copy all that Ted, fuel is certainly the limiting factor. Both my races (G3) were run without any yellows (well done all) and my car was sputtering from fuel starvation on both cool-down laps. If there were more groups, as at past weekends, time becomes a factor in race length also.

15 laps at Tremblant? That sounds really nice
Very interesting and good to know. The MX-5's don't have that issue, but for the R/T cars I can see that as the limitation.
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Re: Road America July

Right you are... The MX-5's have much larger fuel tanks that would let you run over an hour in endurance mode. They try to put roughly equal amounts of gas in the MX 5's using the fuel gauge but it isn't a critical fill to the top like the formula cars. The formula cars have used various fuel bladers, pumps and pick-up methods inside their approx. 5 gallon bladders over the years with mixed results leading to shorter and shorter race windows. If any cars in your fleet have a bladder, pump and pick-up combination that gives you a short run you have to set the race distance for the entire fleet to the shortest window for obvious reasons. Bummer.

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Very interesting and good to know. The MX-5's don't have that issue, but for the R/T cars I can see that as the limitation.
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Re: Road America July

It all goes back to design. Why the cars were designed with so little space for a fuel cell mystifies me. I know, I know, size equals cost, but most comparable-cost Formula car technical regs (such as FF 1600, F1000) allow 41 liters max capacity (10.83 gal). Just a couple more gallons would make a huge difference. IMO the fuel bladder/fuel pump considerations are minor compared to the tiny space available for a fuel cell in the car.
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Re: Road America July

My tenure isn't long enough to know the real history but I believe most of the tank and pump mods were made to increase safety and I don't think any of us would want to drive a Skippy car with 10+ gallons of fuel on board as there'd be no way to protect the tank as it is now. Bigger tanks also affect handling more. That said... We'd all like longer races.

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It all goes back to design. Why the cars were designed with so little space for a fuel cell mystifies me. I know, I know, size equals cost, but most comparable-cost Formula car technical regs (such as FF 1600, F1000) allow 41 liters max capacity (10.83 gal). Just a couple more gallons would make a huge difference. IMO the fuel bladder/fuel pump considerations are minor compared to the tiny space available for a fuel cell in the car.
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Re: Road America July

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Just a couple more gallons would make a huge difference.
I think this amount would be consistent with safety. And at 9-10 mpg would add a considerable number of laps.
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Re: Road America July

A couple of gallons is about 16 pounds and a considerable amount of volume. The weight could be dealt with but show me where you'd hide two additional one gallon cans under your seat? Because the seats have to be adjustable there aren't many options.

For the high risk takers Jager makes an aux. gas tank that sits in your lap and attaches to your lap belts.

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I think this amount would be consistent with safety. And at 9-10 mpg would add a considerable number of laps.
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Re: Road America July

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A couple of gallons is about 16 pounds and a considerable amount of volume. The weight could be dealt with but show me where you'd hide two additional one gallon cans under your seat? Because the seats have to be adjustable there aren't many options.
Pat my dear friend, you are not following. In my first post on the subject, my point was that I was surprised that the original design allowed so little space in the car for the fuel tank compared to other similar cars. The car has a short wheelbase, and given that there is no space, I know that nothing significant can be done now. My point with the 2 gallons is that it is a small enough amount that putting it in at the outset would not have dramatically affected the basic design or significantly increased the safety risk versus the one we already accept, given that this additional amount represents a significant enhancement to the ultimate fuel endurance of the car (about an addtional 40%) and that other similar cars allow much more. I am just surprised how small the space allowed for the tank in the original design is. Especially once they decided to create a race series, I'm surprised the design wasn't upgraded. I know there were numerous competing concerns, especially safety, and perhaps that was what won out, but given what other cars have I still am surprised. Not shocked. Not astounded. Just surprised. A little. And completely accepting, Zen-like, of the reality of the present constraints.

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For the high risk takers Jager makes an aux. gas tank that sits in your lap and attaches to your lap belts.
My current God-designed tank has proven itself to be of adequate capacity to provide sufficient Jager for several DAYS of fun and excitement such that no additonal outboard tanks are required or desired, thank you. However there are other accoutrements that I wouldn't mind sitting in my lap and attaching to my lap belts. I seem to remember that being a not too uncommon occurrence before the age of 25. Really made those long road trips much more enjoyable. Also a highly effective way to keep from falling asleep at the wheel.
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Re: Road America July

The other component we haven't factored in is the engine. The original Ford Cortina engines that powered these cars had considerably less power and better fuel mileage so the 5 gallon tank size probably never became an issue until they retrofiited the bigger Dodge motors.

I just did a quick Google check and a 1979 Crossle 35FF car had a 5 gallon tank so things really haven't changed much except for the motor.
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Re: Road America July

This chassis ran for years with the 1600 cc Ford engine with external fuel pump. Then it had more fuel volume and better economy. Car ran 60+ minutes at speed, and could run two sessions before fueling. The 2000 cc Dodge required high pressure fuel pump, (internallly to keep it cool and avoid vapor lock) which as mentioned has gone through several configurations with tanks and pumps. Net result is less volume and less economical, but more power. Small amount of change but current car is really pressed for a 30 min session as full speed. Really shows up on the long straight tracks with so much time at full power.
Agree a couple lap cushion would be great.
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Re: Road America July

Thanks Jim, Pat. Helps to know the history. Sure wish there was a work-around that would help us with the present car, though.
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Re: Road America July

Back to the subject of Road America for a moment... Who stepped up and collected money for the mechanics fund at the race weekend and where is that money?
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Re: Road America July

I believe that was Mr. Paul Subject
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Re: Road America July

There could be no finer delegate for the task... Sure he did a great job, wisely invested the money and has doubled it by now!

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I believe that was Mr. Paul Subject

I've got your back Paul.
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Videos Re: Road America July

Paul said the take was over 3 grand, given the relatively low driver count that's excellent, thanks GT

Here's a 3 min video from Road America, couldn't use the real juicy stuff, that's for the banquet. Podium vids processing now, will post asap.
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Re: Road America July

Mechanics Fund Tally - $3960 US - I have already sent a check to Sid by mail. Nice job everyone!!
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Re: Road America July

Oustanding! Thanks Paul. Was going to ask you to cover for me but got distracted and forgot. Somehow you got the message anyway. Thanks again and Bravo!

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Mechanics Fund Tally - $3960 US - I have already sent a check to Sid by mail. Nice job everyone!!
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