This past Saturday up at the New England Dragway in Epping NH was cold to start but sunny all day and by the end had become VERY muddy. Early morning runs were completed on snow, ice and frozen dirt--not the NISMO Racer's best surface and combined with my tendency to be overly conservative on the day's first few runs put the NISMO Racer back in 7th place (out of nine) by the noon break. Determined not to let the day get away, the team had a strong 2nd half of the day actually posting a best in class time over the last three runs (out of seven total for the day) and climbed three places to fourth for the event. Not the best of results but given how far back the team was early on, this was certainly acceptable.
Finishes for the year in the first three New England Region SCCA Rallycross events in the Prepared Rear class now total a 3rd, a 2nd and a 4th with a 1st place in the SCCA National event which combined results from the first two events. The NISMO Racing team remains in 2nd place overall for the year in the Prepared Rear class.
With 75 entrants, numerous crew and family members on hand and groups of spectators wandering in and out, the NISMO Racer (again, positioned in its downtime for the most number of eyeballs) was called by one spectator, and I quote, "the best looking vehicle out there" (thanks Red Line Rally!) and got a going over by scores of attendees.
The new Braille battery was fantastic. I was a bit worried coming into the event given the cold temperatures and the large number of times the vehicle would be stopped and started that such a small battery would not hold up--but it performed flawlessly and also received numerous inquiries (answered and directed appropriately) during tech inspection.
While the ice and snow of early runs was not the best condition for the General Tire Grabber A/Ts (the ever present Subies and others generally ran dedicated "ice" tires, many with studs) they kept me on the course well enough so that when conditions changed in the afternoon I was really able to shine and put down some fast times. I can't wait for the dirt and gravel of Summer!
No rest for the wicked though!! The next event is only two weeks away in Laconia/Belmont, NH and who knows what the conditions will be. The Belmont track is notoriously rocky and gets rutted quite easily, though given we are to receive a mix of rain/snow every day for the next five days it could be a soupy mess...We will see...