C1 Rockingham Test and Track Days

Friday and Saturday this week saw the Inglorious Bastards attend the official C1 Racing Club Test Day and BBQ and the Rockingham organised Open Pit Lane Track Day.

Friday Test Day

We were on the International Super Sportscar Circuit today. The day started at 08.30am to sign on, collect series sponsorship livery stickers and club membership cards. Different to other series we have raced was the mandatory breathalyser test for both drivers and team managers. Our car, #332 #MissFire was looking glorious and shiny, so a special thanks to SPY Motorsport for completing her on time. The day was split into ten 25 minute sessions and with four drivers, which meant each driver would get two sessions each, with two driver our for 10 minutes in the last two sessions so we could practice a driver change. First in the car was Ash. He has been looking forward to this day for a long while and it could be seen with his cheeky grin that he was lookout forward to the day.
Ash Patterson Smiling

It was a glorious sunny day with air temperatures in the early 20’s which mandated one key difference to open top Caterham racing and that was, it’s hot inside the car wearing full race gear, no aircon and closed windows.

Of course, this was the first time everyone had driven #MissFire and as the drivers were returning to the pits after their sessions, discussions were around how fun and how much the car would under steer, having to invoke over steer to get the car into corners.

Mark Cox explained:

“It’s complete fun! I’ve not enjoyed driving a car in a long time. The car sometimes moves in a somewhat unstable way invoking over steer, but once back on the gas, she’s back to her stable self.”

“The brakes on the car are brilliant. I would trail brake into Deene at the 100 marker board in the Caterham, but you can count three past the 100 board and brake heavily before turning as the ABS kicks in nicely.”

After lunch and onto the second sessions, discussions extended to lap times, braking points and corner gears. Everyone felt that collaboration and sharing of information and experience bonded a team spirit.

Our drivers were recording 1m56s and 1m57 lap times, though other teams were reporting 1m53s which suggests we still have some work to do, with the fastest lap of the day being 1m52s.

Car 332 In Front

Saturday Track Day

We were on the International Super Sportscar Circuit again today. An earlier start for a 07.30am sign on. Ash was not driving today, but Lewis was. We didn’t have a garage today, but that was an issue as per normal track day etiquette mandated, camp was set around the trailer on another sunny day.

Varying cars would be on circuit today driven by race license holders and in confirmation from the Safety Briefing, Rockingham virgins and track day novices. Our observation was that our Citroen C1 would be seen as slow to many and that we would be constantly waving cars past on the straights as per normal track day rules.

Humphrey Relaxes
Speed Blur
First out on circuit was Lewis and it became obvious quite quickly that the race prepared Minis and Ginettas didn’t understand the concept of overtaking on the straights, especially as the infield has limited straights. But hey ho! Add an Atom and other track day toys including Caterhams and various derivative clones into the mix, including road legal Jaguars and Porsches, it would be safe to say that safety briefing instructions would be ignored as testosterone would take over. Balanced though was the friendly paddock banter and regular noise of ‘clackety clack’ torque wrenches, bringing back fond memories.

Car Colours and Design

Top of the agenda throughout the day was car colour scheme and design. The biggest issue is how to distinguish #MissFire from the other popular red cars within the series.

The common consensus is a three colour scheme of red, black and blue. The plan is to use the red and black of the car in it’s present form, embellishing with a blue wrap that becomes luminous in the dark, becoming distinguishing during night races later this year. It has been agreed to use the same design scheme as SPY’s cars for a consolidated look for team support. So watch this space!

Group Shot Colours