F-Series Round 1 GoPro Motorplex Race Report

March 28, 2017

F-Series Round 1 GoPro Motorplex Race Report

2017 is underway, and things went OK at Go Pro.  This race was a little unusual for me, as I didn't bring my truck and trailer down.  Tony from Kompetitive Kartsport hauled my kart and gear, and I worked under Gerry from Kartworkz' tent.

Not bringing your own trailer down means condensing everything into the absolute bare minimums, which caused a great deal of stress!  Big thanks to those guys for helping me out though, as it made the weekend possible.

This was the first weekend I've ever driven on LeCont tires, and I have to say I'm impressed!  I really like that they actually last more than a handful of laps, unlike the outgoing MG's.  Good riddance MG!

I ran on Thursday to break in both of my X-30's, putting a couple sessions on each.  This was also my first time on track since September 2016, so I was knocking the rust off my driving as well.

Friday practice began and I continued to get back into the rhythm of driving.  My times fell, but not very quickly, and I peaked around the high 49's to 50 seconds on tires with over 70 laps on them.  Friday night I changed motors back to the one I fully rebuilt late last season. Both motors I have are about dead nuts even, and I just wanted to keep wear similar between the two.

During the motor swap I discovered a tiny crack near the bearing hanger on the rear of the frame.  There was nothing I could do about it at the time, so the other motor went back onto the kart.  

Friday night I spent about an hour in front of the computer doing some data analysis.  I figured out I was overdriving turns 3, 6, and 11.  In trying to keep my minimum speed in each corner as high as possible, I was actually compromising my run out of each of those corners.  Saturday morning I calmed down the entry to each of those corners and focused on having the kart settled during the entry phase.  This worked, and by qualifying I shaved about .8 seconds off my best time of the weekend.

Race 1 had a very interesting start.  Our trip down the front straight was waved off, as the leaders began to accelerate too early.  As I slowed down, I was hit from behind and spun towards the other lane of karts.  I locked the brakes and the other drivers managed not to hit me!  As I rejoined in my starting spot, #25, I had a marshal running across the track motioning me to the back.  I wound up taking the green in last place, and between a little bit of carnage  and a handful of passes I finished the race in 25th position, back where I started.

I spoke with officials regarding the incident, and they said they didn't see how the incident started, only that  I was spinning with my brakes locked up, which is why they sent me to the back.  I explained that in my point of view, if they don't see the entirety of an incident they should not be handing out penalties, and that there's no need to make such a decision hurriedly before the race starts.  We left it at that.

I finished race 2 in 23rd place, and had to pull off from the third race a few laps early in order to make my flight home.  I pulled off while in 27th place and was scored 31st.

Overall I had a fun time racing in the GIANT 43 kart TAG field.  Can't wait until the next one.


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