September 16, 2004

Mallory Park Test Day

Had a really good day at Mallory yesterday. It was a half day test session for around ?90.

Didn't start well with a long queue to sign on before you were allowed to cross the circuit and get to the paddock. This meant a carpark stacked with cars and trailers! The queue was so bad that at least one person (Pete Earnshaw, but I'm sure there were others) arrived in time for the first session at 09:00 but missed it because of the queue! The day consisted of 2 x 30 minute sessions and 1 x 40 minute session. Great to see Fabian back with his 'new' old car. Now aluminium and red rather than BRG, but retaining the original fuel filler.

The first session was wet; Mallory is a pretty fast circuit and going round Gerards at 80 mph with the back stepping out is not a great experience. However, I was more concerned with the fact that my water temperature gauge was showing nothing, especially as this was my first time out with a new radiator. A combination of this, the circuit being wet and me not knowing it just meant that I was a general pain to everyone else with a fastest lap of (don't laugh) 1:00.42. Unfortunately, Steve Marshall went off in the first session, bent the De Dion amongst other things and has got a fairly hefty bill to pay before Sunday!

Back in the pits it was clear that the temp sensor had gone, so for the second (now dry) session it was full throttle. I started to learn the circuit and play around with some lines; in particular forcing myself to go into the hairpin slowly! It was also good to tussle with TVRs and others out there. I also got my best time of the day with a 56.05. This compares reasonably with last year's group 2 qualifying times which were in the dry. I think it was during this session that Patrick S also reversed into the tyre wall, doing some damage.

Out for the last session, great fun playing with the TVRs and putting in several 56 second laps. Then the rain started to come down again.....

See you all on Sunday!

Posted by charles at September 16, 2004 1:01 PM