Local Show & Shine ProSource Promo Event

Yesterday I participated in a Show & Shine event with Karlino.  One of my autocross buddies works for ProSource Wholesale Flooring, a premier wholesale supplier to the construction industry.  His business was having a special promotional sales event.  The Show & Shine was a fun way to promote & increase interest in the event.

ProSource Promo Show & Shine Event - quite the hot Mustang selection!

There were at least 28 cars in attendance:  many Mustangs, a few Miatas, some other Mazdas, an S2000, a Legends race car, a Corvette, a Subaru, & others…

ProSource Promo Show & Shine Event, over Karlino's hood...

The attendance was good & laid back.  The flooring choices were phenomenal & extensive!  Eric gave my wife & I a very informative education in wood flooring options & why to consider one type over another.

Eric's Mazdaspeed3 autocrosser & daily driver - Nice AMSOIL Racing signage!

Eric is displaying AMSOIL Racing stickers on the side of his 2010 Mazdaspeed3.  He is proud of his car’s AMSOIL synthetic lubrication & how it protects the engine, even during autocrossing.  As an FYI, Eric is one of my AMSOIL Preferred Customers – he is able to buy AMSOIL Product at wholesale prices!

Karlino,my AMSOIL-sponsored Miata autocrosser & daily driver, shining brilliantly!

If anyone is interested in quality flooring options for their home and/or business, give Eric a call.  Ask him about their low price guarantee – here’s his business card.

Eric's ProSource business card - Go ahead. give him a call!

Racing Ready enjoyed supporting a fellow autocrosser & showing how stock Karlino is.  The BBQ lunch was awesome, as well!

Dan

Stephen Olvey, New Medical Director of Circuit of the Americas

Circuit of the Americas (aka COTA, the world-class racing facility being built just south of Austin , TX) has just recently announced a serious appointment. The very well regarded & former CART (Championship Auto Racing Team, or Champ Car) Director of Medical Services, Steve Olvey, has just been appointed as the new Medical Director for the Circuit of the Americas.

Steve Olvey - New Director of Medical Services for Circuit of the Americas

This speaks VOLUMES as to how serious this world class this facility will be.  Mr. Olvey has been at the forefront of racing driver safety & medical care.  For example, he was instrumental in saving the life of famed, two-time  CART Champion Alex Zanardi.

This was at the September 24, 2001 race in Lausitz, Germany.  Alex was exiting the pits when his car lost control & passed into the high speed path of Alex Tagliani’s car.  This  T-bone crash took out the front end of Alex’s car & both of his legs.  Both drivers were airlifted immediately to a Berlin hospital.  What could have been a tragic loss of life was avoided by the quick thinking of then CART Medical Director Steve Olvey.  Essentially, Alex Zanardi is alive today due to Mr. Olvey’s quick thinking actions that day!

Alex Zanardi's graphic, life-altering crash in the CART race of September 24, 2001 at Lausitz, Germany

Here is what Steve Olvey had to say about his appointment:

“I jumped at the chance to be in on the ground floor of developing what promises to be one of the most advanced rapid-response trauma-care systems in the world of sports,” Olvey said in a statement.

“I believe Circuit of the Americas will become not only a center where sports injuries will be effectively treated, but also a center for research into the issues that can affect all athletes, such as concussion, spinal-cord injury and severe traumatic brain injury.”

So, Tavo Hellmund continues to lead the charge in developing this preeminent racing & other high end entertainment facility known as Circuit of the Americas.  Racing Ready has heard that, in addition to a 10 year commitment from both Formula1 & MotoGP racing, there will be 2 other race series announced later this year.

Racing Ready is waiting for the latest information to post for all of us!

Dan

2011 SASCA Autocross #4 – Dealing w/ Blossom

Today was the SASCA Autocross #4, at the Blossom Athletic Center parking lot.

SASCA 2011 AutoX #4 - Blossom lot pano - e

The course was designed by Chris, with fine tuning help from Vivek.

Chris & Vivek confering on a matter of autocross course design...

There was a grand representation & of makes models & a good bunch of Novices.

Novices listening attentively to Kevin, the SASCA Novice Coordnator for Autocross

Kevin did a great job of explaining the course & how to best get through it… And here’s the T-shirt to prove it!

Kevin, SASCA Novice Coordinator, explaining a key autocross driving point!

Even with the price of gas approaching $4 gallon, we had a good turnout – about 110 competitors!

1st heat morning grid of the 2011 SASCA AutoX#4

2nd midday heat grid of the 2011 SASCA AutoX#4

We had a total of 6 runs.  I should have stopped at 5.  I incrementally improved most of my first 5 runs & then completely threw away my last run, completely blowing a Chicago corner box turn… (I did about a 270 degree spin – yuck!)…

Karlino debuting the RacingReady.com colors in autocross livery!

After 2 months it was good to get in my car & stretch its (& my) legs at a competitive event.  This time I raised my tire pressures from 34/36 to 36/38, front & rear.  I think the car felt better, but it was hard to tell on the unforgiving sealed asphalt surface at the Blossom lot.  For today’s 2011 SASCA Autocross #4 results, click here.

There are now TWO cars in SASCA that autocross with AMSOIL Lubricants!!!  Thanks Eric!

In addition, Karlino helped to debut the RacingReady.com color clings that Eric debuted at the Houston SCCA National Tour, last month.

Karlino with AMSOIL Racing debuting at SASCA autocross the RacingReady.com color clings - they look sharp!

Racing Ready wonders how the rest of this autocross season is going to shake out.  My less than 1 year old tires are loosing grip, even with the even wear of the tread.  We’ll see what happens…

Dan

 

Circuit of the Americas, Formula1 USGP Facility

United States Grand Prix Group Brands World-Class Facility “Circuit of the Americas™” – Identity Conveys Multi-national Appeal, Multi-purpose Use.

Circuit of the Americas logo, home of the Formula1 Austin USGP!

This is the new Circuit of the Americas logo, announced Tuesday, April 12th, 2011.  This is the name of the facility where the Formula 1™  Austin USGP will take place in 2012.  But the Circuit of the Americas™ (CotA) will be SO much more than a race track to host a Formula 1™ race.  Click here for their Press Release!

Circuit of the Americas (CotA) announcement - with Tavo Hellmund & Red McCombs

Texas Lands MotoGP for 2013.  Beginning in 2013, the CotA will have a 10 year contract for world class motorcycle racing.  This is the Formula1 equivalent of two-wheeled racing.  This will involve motorbikes & racers in the following classes:

  • MotoGP class – the pinnacle of motorcycle racing
  • Moto2
  • Moto3

For more about MotoGP, world class motorcycle racing, click here!

Moto GP for 2013 Competition Motorcycle

More important for the long term viability of this full facility, is that Circuit of the Americas is partnering with Texas schools.  The CotA educational initiative spearheads the usage of this land & facilities just south of Austin, Texas.  This is a win-win for students & community.  The following four educational Districts & institutions will be involved:

  • Del Valle ISD – Race to Learn & their own Green Racing Research program, to explore ways energy efficient technologies may be used at the site
  • Huston-Tillotson University – Business School summer internship program, working with the finace & marketing departments
  • St. Edward’s University – Humanities School of PhotoCommunication, learning to create a commemorative table book
  • Texas A&M University – School of Landscape Architecture to connect Classrooms with Construction, installing a number of landscape features

Racing Ready is pleased to share these announcements.  To see even more, visit the Circuit of the Americas electronic press room, here!

Dan

Racing Speed vs. Budget: A New Perspective

‘Tis more fun to drive a slow car fast,
than a fast car slow.

This is a quotable quote from Jon, a Miata friend of mine.  It is in reference to a short & to the point video clip he sent that I had to share…

Looking closely, you can note that this NA Miata driver is crazy-stupid, NO rollbar & possibly NO helmet!

Squirrelly, on the knife edge of control, track drivien NA Miata!

This is not something we at Racing Ready condone, but I’m sure this was done on “the other side of the pond!”

Dan

2011 SCCA Houston Solo Nat’l Tour – Wrapup

Eric, my esteemed Contributing Blogger Extraordinaire, was challenged by this event.  It took him awhile to wrap his head around the results.  Let’s read what he experienced & his outcome at the 2011 SCCA Solo National Tour in Houston.

Yes, it took awhile, but I decided to write the blog about my experiences at the 2011 SCCA Solo National Tour in Houston/Baytown.  Both mornings dawned misty and overcast, with an added tang in the air from the nearby refineries.  While all of my first day photos were accidentally erased, this shot of day two was pretty much the same.

Ricky pushing his Honda S2000 in pursuit of his 2011 SCCA Houston Tour trophy...

Super Stock ran second and worked first, and I was assigned to do radio and flag duties at corner one, which gave me the best seat in the house to witness a B-stock Battle Royale between twelve cars, with last year’s winner Jadrice repeating and SASCA president Ricky taking the last trophy spot in fourth.  Spokesters Jerry and Sherman in their Genesis were also locked in an epic G-stock battle for first, with Jerry prevailing by less than three tenths.  Other impressive performances were turned in by John and David who ran their FSP-classed 1986 Corolla in XP and finished third and fourth amongst much more powerful machinery, and SASCA Safety Chair Chris who improved to mid-pack in his STR S2000.

A challengingly competitive group, staged & waiting for their next autocross run at the 2011 SCCA Houston Tour event!

At last, it was time for us to attack the course.  In addition to the usual Lotuses and Corvettes, Troy added a little extra variety of the rear-engined kind with his Porsche GT3.  But as first runs concluded and second runs started, it was apparent who had “gotten” the line and who was struggling.  Unfortunately for me, I was the worst of the worst, and in watching the videos taken with Jay’s iPhone it was pretty apparent that I was too slow on the fast parts and too fast on the slow parts, as you can see in the video below.

In the meantime, Mark and Matt in their red C5 Z06 and Karter in his green Lotus were all within a tenth of each other in the low-38s, and my co-driver Jay, as announcer Dan put it, was the “Fastest of the Others” with a 40.17.  My best raw time was a painful 40.7 and what made it worse was that I coned it away, leaving me to stand on an even slower first run of 41.5.

Eric's Corvette, Sunshine, in a pensive state, considering how to avoid SCCA "connage"....

Day two brought pretty much more of the same, only this time Mark knocked out a 38.7 to take the win by half a second over his co-driver Matt, with Karter and Michael in third and fourth with their Lotus.  Jay would remain fastest of the others with a 40.50, edging the Porsche by about four-tenths.  Again, I coned away my fastest run, a 41.2, and had to stand on my first run of 41.7, finishing eighth behind Robert in his C6 Z06 by half a second.  You can see what the difference is in the next video of Mark’s first run, where he did as many things right as I did wrong.

The lesson I learned from this experience – don’t overdrive. Of course, my finishing position goes against the whole concept of Racing Ready, which is to go from “… wannabe to Real Racer”.  Guess I’m stuck at the wannabe stage, or at least until I get some more lessons from Ricky and more practice on the visually challenging national-level courses.

Here's Eric willing himself beyond the wannabe stage, during an autocross run at the 2011 SCCA Houston Tour...

The only solace I have is that many drivers more experienced than me were having trouble with it as well.  Also, many thanks to Ricky’s co-driver Eric, who walked the day two course with me and provided lots of advice.  Of course, it would’ve helped if I’d taken more of it!  Oh well, at least we made it home safe and my car didn’t break, which is more than I can say about last year.

Getting ready to de-trailer Sunshine after a long SCCA 2011 Houston Tour weekend..

This year, I will hopefully make it to the SCCA Solo National Championships in Lincoln, where I hope to drive better.  Or if not drive better, then maybe at least not finish last!

Eric, we feel your pain.  Know that we are always learning.  This is SO true at Racing Ready.  Again, thanks for the public debut of those RacingReady.com cling logos.  They really looked great on Sunshine. The increased blog readership is appreciated.  Let’s continue this again in the future!

Dan