Sunday, April 18, 2010

Well...That Brought the Suck...


Uh...wow...

With so many Nissans racing in so many events this past weekend I thought for sure there might be some bright news come Monday. Nope...Turns out that pretty much everyone puked on their shoes for one reason or another. Makes one wonder just what anyone in their right mind is doing when they choose to run a Nissan in a competitive event these days. Of course most will carry on but the longer Nissan goes with results like these, the more racers and enthusiasts of all kinds will go elsewhere...

First up? We had Brass Monkey Racing in the SCCA World Challenge series. Running two GT-Rs both had issues with "limp mode" in the first St. Petersburg event a few weekends ago where driver Tony Rivera at least brought home respectable 7th and 8th place finishes in the two events there. At Long Beach this weekend though they two cars finished a poor 30th and 31st out of 36 entries suffering a number of mechanical difficulties and fighting the "limp mode" issues once again. As a manufacturer Nissan has garnered ZERO manufacturer points in the first three events of the year. As Nissan's supposed high profile re-entry to American Motorsports this effort has fallen flat on its face thus far. A major influx of Nissan engineers is needed to sort out the limp mode issue as this is one known to have plagued a number of Nissan motorsports efforts in the past few years to massively debilitating effect.

Then we had the Nissan GT-Rs of the FIA's GT1 series in the UAE. With four GT-Rs (two from team Sumo Power GT and two from Swiss Racing) running in this extremely high profile event covered worldwide there was an acceptable result with one DNF due to steering damage from hit taken on Lap 1 but the other three grabbing a 12th, 14th and 16th place finish. Given that they were saddled with a 33 kg penalty for performing so well in pre-season testing, these finishes are solid and should improve with the removal of some of this penalty weight before the Silverstone event a month or so from now...

Next there was the ABSA Toyota Dealer 400 in South Africa. Given Glyn Hall's moving to Toyota and the closing of the Nissan Motorsports shop there I'm not sure how much one can expect, but the trucks that were dominant over the past 5 years did not suddenly fall apart and become antiques, yet their performance thus far has been underwhelming. In the Toyota Dealer 400, a race won five consecutive years by Nissans before 2010, the best a Nissan could muster was a 7th and 8th place finish out of 18 entries. Given that only nine entries actually were able to finish the race I suppose its acceptable, but barely. The two Regent Racing Navaras finishing here are multiple time South African event winners and should contend for a win every time out as well as for the overall ABSA Off-Road championship.

Lastly there was the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing series being held this weekend in Surprise, AZ. Having won the last two rookie of the year awards in Nissans in the Pro Lite division (Casey Currie and Jimmy Stephensen) one would think that Nissan trucks would run well. Unfortunately Currie has defected to Toyota (and run poorly I might add) while Stephensen runs solidly mid-pack most of the time with his underfunded operation. A new Nissan driver is Stephan Papadakis who is usually found at Drifting events racing RWD cars on asphalt. Saturday's race found Papadakis finishing 10th out of 18 as the last truck on the lead lap while Stephensen finished 13th, some 10 laps down. Sunday found Stephensen in 12th, some three laps down while Papadakis ended in 15h, six laps down.

If that wasn't all depressing enough, in the New York USRC asphalt rally there were NO Nissans or Datsuns entered with Dan Brosnan who won the 2009 USRC 2WD championship trading in his Sentra SE-R for an Opel Manta 400--and DNFing.

Wow...think I'll go slit my wrists and play with some Matchbox cars...






1 comment:

Michal said...

Hey, why so sad. There was second run of Hungarian cross country rally championship on second April's weekend and Nissan took first and second! László Palik driving South Africa's Navara won, Erik Korda with identical car grabbed second. And if this is not enough, Hungarian Army Team driver Zoltán Bálint finished fifth. Then there was Audi 3-l. TDi powered Pathfinder on ninth and regular hardbody Pickup on tenth. Two Pickups with Navara face didn't finished. Quite good I would say.