31st Mar2017

A Giant NASA Gallery For Your Weekend

by Michael Chandler

BEHOLD! A giant gallery from the first NASA Utah Saturday of the year!  And it’s giant in a couple ways

  1. There are 260 photos in the gallery
  2. The photos are larger than they have been in the past

Why are they larger, Mike? So you can share them easier on social media, or make them your desktop wallpaper.  Why did you do this?  So I’m not charging you $1-$5 for a downloadable version from my SmugMug page. (Speaking of, head over there and grab some prints or coasters or something)  All we ask of you is that when you download and share any of these images you don’t crop out our watermark, and that you mention/tag us.  You get big photos for free, and we get that many more eyeballs on us.  More eyeballs mean we will be able to do more stuff, like travel with some of you guys to your various out of state events!  Everybody wins!

*Article, Photos, Videos, and Audio clips are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
16th Jan2017

Some World Challenge News

by Michael Chandler

It’s the off season for the Pirelli World Challenge, but that doesn’t mean things aren’t happening.  Far from it!  You know that, but you might not know the details.  So, to that end, I’m gonna bring you a few news items of note.  Things to look for when the series comes through in August.  

Thing The First: DXDT Racing’s New Car

DXDT will be running a new Mercedes AMG GT3 in five Sprint-X and three regular sprint races this season.  Hooray shiny new car!  They’ll start the season at Virginia International Raceway April 28-30, then they run the rest of the schedule.  That’s definitely something to keep an eye on.  They’ve done great in the Super Trofeo series, and last year at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca they went 1-2 in the GT Cup class in Sprint X.  To be honest, I’m more interested in hearing this thing at full tile than I am in seeing it.  Why? Have you heard the AMG V8’s?  There you go.

Thing the Second: Panoz Has a GTS Program

Yeah, Panoz is back in GT racing.  With Tommy Milner at the helm, Panoz will have a two car, full season GTS effort.  The car will be the Avezzano GT4, pictured above.  What the hell is an Avezzano?  It’s… It’s that blue car up there.  Details of the street car include a 450 horsepower, 6.2 liter V8, a six speed manual.  Not sure how those will change when it enter the series, but it will enter with full carbon fiber widebody, splitter, sideskirts, and rear diffuser.  The only announced driver is Ian James, who has A LOT of experience in many different types of cars (including previous stints with Panoz).  In addition to running the PWC effort, Milner is on hand to develop the car into a proper GT4 car; although, Panoz hasn’t made a homologation request to the GT4 geverning body: the SRO.

Thing the Third: Magnus Joins PWC

YES, Magnus is leaving the IMSA WeatherTech series and will be running a TWO car effort in PWC.  Formerly Twitterless and current team owner John Potter will drive one of the Audi Sport customer racing R8’s, and an as of yet unnamed Audi Sport customer racing supplied driver will be in the other.  They’ve won Rolex 24 races (one in a Porsche and one in an Audi), Sebring, and a couple of Tequila Patron North American Endurance championships, along with plenty of class wins.  They’ll be running the regular sprint races, along with the SprintX races.  More importantly, a fan favorite joins an incredibly fan friendly series, which means we all win.

*Article, Photos, Videos, and Audio clips are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
20th Sep2016

More NASA Utah Goodness!

by Michael Chandler

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Went to the Tinners meet on Sunday!  Still working on those photos, and something else, so here’s another 20 photos from this past NASA Utah weekend!  Do you want more from this weekend?  Perhaps in the form of something to hang on your wall?  Well good news!  I’ve just put a ton of photos on the SmugMug page!  Head over there to grab a paper print, a high resolution digital copy, or even a mounted canvas print.  Support those who support you!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
16th Sep2016

NASA Utah 2016 Round 7: The Penultimate Round!

by Michael Chandler

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It was a crowded weekend, and it was a good weekend.  We had the good ol’ boys and the plucky series from California joining our local heroes: the NASA Utah drivers, crew, and hangers on.  We’re going to start our recap of the races, at least Saturday’s races, in the Lightning group.  Specifically in the GTS2, where Chris Haunold drove like a madman to take the win.  He didn’t have to drive like a madman to do so, because he was all by his lonesome on that day.

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Papa SMurf is wise, but Papa Smurf also has had some issues with his Smurf mobile.  This Saturday it was some unintended three wheel motion that sidelined the blue Miata, but thankfully Todd Green has access to the legendary, mighty, and all powerful Paul Mitchell.  With the noble steed betwixt his thighs underneath him, he secured himself the win in PTE.

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In a tight Spec Miata race, Chris “three measures of Gordon’s; one of vodka; half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it over ice, and add a thin slice of lemon peel” Bond somehow held off Matt Williamson.  Matt was on a mission the whole race, but couldn’t get anything to stick.  So great to see this race happen.  I’ve been telling you people to watch Spec Miata!

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Our lone Thunder Roadster entrant, JD Stull, ran a solid race and turned a fastest lap of 2:16.545.  Not too bad.

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944 Spec has a new driver!  Otto and Sam have a new challenger: Greg Troester, and he made his presence known by taking the class win by over nineteen seconds!

We’ve now come to Spec Z, which was insane.  Not because it was a close race, but because almost everyone felt the need to test the off-roading prowess of the Nissan 350Z.

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There were a lot of Z’s covered in dust at various points in the day, and plenty had some after the race.

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Speaking of, Arthur Golebiowski took the win.  He dominated, because that’s what he does.

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Jeff Burton, in his Cayman R, hung a 50 second lead on Mark Reichman to take the GTS3 win.  Now, we need to have a chat Jeff.  You seem like a nice enough guy, but you need to do something about the looks of your car.  It’s too understated.  Hear me out!  Throw a classic Porsche livery on there.  Not Matrini, not Rothman’s, definitely not Gulf.  No, you need the Pink Pig.  Think about it…

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Anywell, in GTS4 we had Byron Smith and Darrell Troester battling it out.  Unfortunately, Byron retired from the race.  Having the win in hand, Darrell kept getting good laps in.  His best time in the race was a 2:03.079.

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ST1 had the closest finish of the day, and maybe of the season.  Bob Evans and Michael Eifling had a close battle all race, with neither one giving an inch.  Bob, being cagey, got the nose of his Sprint Cup Ford Fusion JUST ahead of Michael’s C5 Corvette at the line.  Bob’s margin of victory was .045 seconds!  This battle was good enough for Bob to win Racer of the Day honors at the barbecue.  Recognizing the hell of a drive Michael had, Bob decided to give the award to Michael.  It was a great act, but not without a touch of Bob-ness: Dave Kizerian made the announcement that Bob was giving his award to Michael, Michael came up and gave Bob a hug.  Bob, while still hugging Michael, spun 180 degrees.  They let go of each other, and Bob began making his way back to his seat… with the award still in his hand.  He gave it to Michael, but it was a fun little sequence.

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Despite not having a splittler, due to it coming loose and disintegrating during an earlier TT session, Toby Crawford took home the ST2 win.

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Todd Ainsworth, in the Minion mobile, defended himself against a herd of Ford Performance Racing School Mustangs in ST3.  He held of the colorful ponies, and got himself the win.

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We had a new challenger in Super Unlimited.  Well, a new car.  Steve Burns hopped in this former Trans Am Mustang, and went toe to toe with the likes of the Makes & Models Huracan ST, the Air Power Racing 911 GT3R, and Swamp Thing.  He did well in the new car, beating out Swamp Thing for the class win, and coming in P2 overall.

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In P1 overall, and setting a new class record in the process, was Derek Wolthoff in the Makes & Models Huracan ST.  He ran away with the race win, with a 29.990 second gap over second place.

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Lyfe Motorsport had a few drivers out in some Porsche Cup cars.  In the yellow 996 Cup car was David Bradshaw, who took TT1 with a best time of 2:06.481.

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We had a dramatic upset in TT3!  Mike Bratsch, taking advantage of James Pasquier’s absence and Andy Moench being a new daddy (congrats buddy!), ran a fast lap of 2:09.044 and got himself a shiny new piece of hardware.

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We had some Miata on Miata violence in TTB!  Darin Beaudoin, in his white S2000, faced an attack from Nam Yoon, in his white S2000.  Less than a second separated them, but in the end the affable Darin got himself another win.  Does this win prove that the S2000 is the ultimate TTB machine?  YOUR GUESS IS AS GOOD AS MINE!

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Max Dufford, in the wrong-from-a-purist’s-POV-but-right-from-a-physics-stand-point Porsche, ran a 2:16.078 en route to a TTC win.

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Trever with an E Pope took home another TTD win, and hit the kerbs in the Attitudes like they owed him money.

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Pictured above is Papa Smurf, winning PTE with a best time of 2:15.343 and before he drove a wheel off of the Smurf mobile.

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In the second of the Lyfe backed Porsche Cup Cars was Mike Kresser.  He was driving it in TTU, and took home a win with a 2:01.452.

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This f*ckin guy.  I mean, seriously.  Shawn Murphy set a TT2 record last month AND became the first Subaru to break the 2 minute mark on the Outer Loop, and now this month he breaks his own record by over half a second.  Is it not good enough for you Shawn?  WHY CAN’T YOU JUST BE HAPPY?!?  But seriously, this is a hell of a feat.  He didn’t just break his own record by a little but.  The .6whatever it is he broke it by, is a a decent margin.  And this is still a “full interior street car”.  Imagine if it were lighter…

And that’s that.  We have one more round coming up, the legendary TresDuro!  Keep October 7, 8, and 9 open, because there will be multi track configuration racing on Saturday, and FULL TRACK MADNESS ON SUNDAY!!!  You best be out there.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.

 

10th Aug2016

NASA Utah Round 6: A Prelude To The Night

by Michael Chandler

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Ahh yes, it was that glorious time of year.  As the sun was setting, the green flag would be dropping on the annual six hour endurance race.  That would come later.  Earlier in the day we had the regular slew of NASA Utah races and TT sessions.  Because I have poor time management skills, and knowing that I wouldn’t be leaving Utah Motorsports Campus until the wee hours of Sunday morning, I showed up at lunch time.  That was a mistake…

Time Trial

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It was a mistake because I missed Shawn Murphy’s sessions.  More importantly, I missed his record setting session.  The one where he ran a 1:59.566, becoming the fastest Subaru to run the Outer Loop and setting a TT2 record.  How does Shawn’s time compare?  How fast did he push that full interior street car?  Well…

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Well, Brendon Stewart in the Makes & Models Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo, a purpose built racecar running in the Unlimited class, ran a 1:59.464.  The V10 powered monster was less than a quarter of a second faster than Shawn’s ridiculous “street car”.  HOWEVA, Shawn only needed to run one good lap.  Brendon needed to run one good lap, and keep the car intact so it could run the Thunder race AND the enduro that same day.

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Another local boy pulling double duty on the day was David Gilliland.  Later in the day he’d be hoping in his Spec Z and running in the enduro, but before that he was in his bright orange Viper T/A for TT1 duty.  He did pretty good in TT, winning TT1 with a best time of 2:06.270.

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The enduro brought out a lot of driver’s from out of state.  One such driver was Erik Davis.  He brought out his gorgeous E36 M3, and was running in both TT and the Thunder race.  He did very well in TT, taking home the TT3 win.  His best time was 2:08.681.

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Despite breaking his shifter, Darin Beaudoin laid down some fast TTB laps.  He claimed another class win with a 2:15.318.

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Todd Green got the win in TTE.  He was not in Paul Mitchell, but the Smurf!  Papa Smurf laid down a 2:17.629.

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Another guy I missed because I don’t know how to sleep was Max Dufford.  Max picked up another TTC win in his white Boxster, with a best time of 2:18.1.66

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And finally, Trever “With an E” Pope banged out his umpteenth TTD win with a 2:22.819.  Speaking of guys who just win a lot…

Lightning

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Arthur Golebiowski was back in his old form, taking home the Spec Z win.  Tom Kaminski and Chad Aalders battled it out for second place, with Tom and his HKS lookin Z taking home second place.

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Toting the SCR Performance banner in GTS2 was, and probably still is, Doug Young.  He came out, and went home with the GTS2 win over Mark Boschert.

Joseph DePillo was out and about in Spec E46, a class we don’t see much of in these parts.  That’s a shame, we need more inline sixes wailing out there.  Anyway, he picked up the win in class.

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David DePillo, maybe related, in another E46 3-Series took home a win in GTS5.

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Through a shrubbery came your PTB winner: Nathan Rohner.  Still waiting on someone to challenge him…

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Papa Smurf is wise, and had a charged battery this time around.  Todd Green was back in his dominant form, and took home another PTE win.  Fun fact: Todd’s and Nathan’s total race times and best lap times were nearly identical.

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Are you guys watching Spec Miata like I told you to?  You better have been, because this was another good one.  Chris Bond beat out Mike Ferrara and Matt Williamson for the class win.  The gap from first to third was only four seconds.

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So this little M3 Compact, driven by Michael Schmitt, claimed the… GTSU win?  Huh… Well, it’s on MyLaps and Race Hero…  You know what?  If this changes, we’ll update this post, but until then REVEL IN THE GLORY OF THIS TINY BMW!!!

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PTD saw another SCR Performance car driven by another Schmitt: Mikey was at the helm of the Subaru BRZ, and took home an impressive win.

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JF Martin turned some laps in PTC before taking the RSX into the night for the enduro.  He took home the win.

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And finally: OTTO SILVA LADIES AND GENTLEMEN! He’s out there, soldiering on in 944 Spec, by his lonesome.

Thunder

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We’ve arrived at the Thunder race, where we saw a legend appear.  A mythical creature, the stuff of folk tales.  Swamp Thing, the chop top C4 Corvette that makes crazy power and doesn’t know what to do with it.  James Miller harnessed the beast’s rage, and rode it to a class in Super Unlimited AND the overall race win.

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The Makes & Models Huracan Super Trofeo had been through a day of testing, practice and qualifying sessions for this race, and some TT sessions.  It qualified on the pole for the Thunder race, but Derek could not hold off a mythical beast.  He did take home the GTSU win, which is nothing to sneeze at.

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Bob Evans, Mr. Enchantment himself, ran over all the kerbs in the Attitudes.  Our gentle giant climbed to the top of the podium in ST1.

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Brett Strom, in the first M4 racer I’ve seen in person, took home the win in GTS5.  Look at the exhaust: it’s not just a side exit, it’s coming out of the door!

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Coming straight out of wherever the hell he lives now, and straight to the tippy top of ST2 is Travis Tidball!  He lost a wing, but got it back on there for the race.

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Dan McKeever was out in Old Blue for some ST3 laps.  He took home the win for the Ford Performance Racing School.

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Gregory Dell, and his metallic blue Porsche Cayman, picked up a win in the GTS4 class.  Need legal counsel?  From the looks of his car, he might know someone…

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The American Iron class was won by on Mr. Garth Yettick, who did some sight seeing during the race…

That’s it for the NASA Utah coverage, but not the coverage from Utah Motorsports Campus.  We’ll have coverage of the Utah 6 Hour coming up later this week!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
22nd Jul2016

NASA Utah Round 5: The Melty Way

by Michael Chandler

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It was hot.  Very hot.  So hot, in fact, that some competitors ended up being less than competitive because of it.  Andy Moench’s and Mike Bratsch’s TT3 cars were feeling the heat, as were some of the Spec Z cars.  Greg Warnock’s E92 M3 racecar succumbed to overheating issues, but he just hopped into his Cayman GT4 Clubsport and got some more laps in.  I mean, who doesn’t have a back up race car in this day and age?  Speaking of Greg’s race…

THUNDER

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That’s where we start our coverage.  Surprisingly, it was pretty drama free.  At least from where I was.  We had one GTS3 competitor, and that was Mayor McCheese himself: Blake Troester!

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Byron Smith was back!  Unfortunately for him, Darrell Troester was still there.  He finished a lap up on Byron, and claimed another GTS4 win.

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Despite going spin cycle early in the race, Gerry Shear (who gets it) got everything straightened out and took home a GTS5 win.

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NASA Utah’s own BFG, Bob Evans, took the Snickers Ford Fusion NASCAR Sprint Cup High Downforce Prototype to the top of the podium in ST1.

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J.R. Smith, proving that good things can be made better with the addition of an LSx, claimed another ST2 win.

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Benevolent Overlord Matt Guiver hopped in the Minion (or banana mobile) and out drove five of the Ford Performance Racing School Mustangs.  Five!  That’s a lot of Mustangs to beat out.

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In the Super Unlimited class, Pirate Supreme Les Long threw down some blistering laps and took home the class win.  Could he take home the overall win?

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Well, no.  Makes & Modesl had their Huracan Super Trofeo back on track, and Derek was a man on a mission.  Despite rising temperatures setting off alarms, he managed to claim the GTSU win AND the overall race group win.  Speaking of that white, German/Italian super-weapon…

TIME TRIAL

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Brendon Stewart hopped in the driver’s seat for the TT sessions and threw down a best time of 1:35.580 to take the TTU win.

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TT1 saw a few Vipers.  Definitely not a bad thing, especially given the news that FCA will be killing the big snake after 2017.  Topping the podium was one of those snakes, the one driven by David Gilliland.  He slithered around the East course of UMC in 1:41.8.44

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Shawn Murphy wasn’t there that long on Saturday.  He had a wedding to go to.  I suggested someone Facetime him in, but that one didn’t fly.  My brilliant idea didn’t fly, but Shawn did.  And in the crowded combined session to boot.   His best time in his “street car” was 1:40.988.

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As mentioned earlier, Andy and Mike’s cars were feeling the effects of the heat.  The heat didn’t seem to be a problem for James Pasquier, and his reliable as the sunrise 993 911.  He set his best time in the last session of the day!  Clearly we should all get 911’s, and be immune from heat.

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Darin Beaudoin barely escaped the day with a win in TTB.  He had Stephen Martin hot on his heels.  Stephen posted a best time of 1:47.795, which was so close to Darin’s time.  Darin, in his Honda Miata, posted a 1:47.760.

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For those keeping score at home, Porsches have claimed five wins on the day so far.  After this, they will have claimed six.  Max Dufford, in his Boxster, ran a 1:48.977 in TTC.

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Todd Green, listed in the #60 which I don’t have a picture of nor even see, took home the win in TTE.  He posted a best time of 1:47.335 in the second TT Storm session.  I don’t have a photo of that car, but I do have a photo of the mythical beast that is L’oreal! I MEAN PAUL MITCHELL!!!  Speaking of things that you could hear about later…

LIGHTNING

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Things got a little spooky, then kinda violent.  Some Spec Miata drivers got too close coming out of Release, and one spun.  Later in the race: a couple of Spec Z drivers got together, sending one into the dirt.  Aside from those events, and another Spec Z losing an engine over the course of the race which left the car stranded at pit in, the race was fairly straightforward.  Let’s start with Spec Miata, where Chris Bond returned!  He took home with win, and managed to stay clear of any sort of shenanigans.

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Otto Silva wasn’t the only 944 Spec driver this weekend!  He was still the winner, but he wasn’t alone!

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We haven’t had any open wheel races this season, which has meant that the usual drivers have been doing other things to occupy their time.  Apparently one of those “other things” for Troy Duffin is getting a hold of a Datsun 510 racer.  He brought it out this weekend, and took home the win in PTE.

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Here we see the GTS2, PTB, and Thunder Roadster winners, all at once!  Tom Rogers got himself a win in GTS2, Nathan Rohner in his RX7 (which was originally built as an autocross car) got another PTB win, and JD Stull took the win in Thunder Roadster.  This was JD’s first race, and it was great seeing him out in competition.

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We had one, lone GTS1 competitor: Steve Burns.  He and Chris Bond had a solid battle all race, which was great to watch.

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And in Spec Z, we had the #42 DXDT car, driven by David Askew, atop the podium.

PHEW!  What a day!  On to some miscellaneous stuff:

  • Todd Green usually dominates PTE, except this race.  Why?  Because he had a dead battery.  He got a push start, but ended up being two laps down.  Wouldn’t know it by the way he drove.
  • The Spec Z that lost an engine was the #46 DXDT car, driven by James Burke.  It was smoking on every downshift from what I heard from some of the other drivers
  • It was Kyle Schick who wound up in the dirt.  Can’t quite remember who hit him though, but I do have footage of the contact!
  • I ran around and slapped some CAM stickers on to some competitors cars.  If you’d like one, shoot me an email and have some space on the passenger side of your car clear.
  • For those of you who want to purchase photos: go to here

And that is that!  We’ll be back for Round 6, and the 6 Hour Enduro on August 6.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
21st Jul2016

NASA Utah Round 5 Gallery

by Michael Chandler

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Hey look!  Some actual racing photos!  Michael Wells sent us some choice cuts from the last NASA Utah weekend, and we put them on display for you.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
20th Jul2016

Post-race Celebrations

by Michael Chandler

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The checkered flag drops!  The hard fought race is over!  Time for a cool down lap before heading into the pits, where you’ll congratulate your fellow drivers.

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THIS GUY GETS IT

Talk to race officials about anything that happened on track.

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And most importantly: thank your crew for giving you a car that was competitive, safe, and tough enough to survive a race!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
19th Jul2016

Pre-race Preparation

by Michael Chandler

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“Race Group! This is your third, and final call!”

The voice booms through the loudspeakers all over the paddock.  Everywhere teams scramble to do last minute prep to their cars, and drivers ready themselves for the race ahead.  Helmets and HANS devices go on, then the drivers climb into the cockpits.

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Harnesses are cinched tight, radio cables and drink tubes are connected to the helmets.  GoPros are turned on, the doors are shut, and the window nets raised.  The drivers give a thumbs up to their crew members, and then the final whistle blows, and the cars are sent out for their formation lap.

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*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
15th Jun2016

Let There Be Lightning: NASA Utah Lightning Round 4

by Michael Chandler

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The rains fell on the Lightning race, which made for a very interesting session.  The race began with banging doors and rooster tails, but thankfully no incidents to speak of.

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There were multiple 944 Spec racers!  Unfortunately only one of them remembered to bring rain tires.  That lucky, prepared driver was none other than Otto Silva!  He took home another class win in the trying conditions, and did so without any spooky events.

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The normally robust Spec Miata field dwindled to a mere three cars.  Sad, considering that weather like this levels out the field and gives the little Mazdas plenty of opportunities to harass some of the faster competitors.  Carving a path through the puddles and onto the podium was Carter James.

NASA Utah Round 4 Lightning Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-4

At some point in the day Tom Rogers broke something on his BMW.  All was looking lost.  A trip to BMW of Murray was taken, and the part was acquired!  Now it was a matter of getting back to the track, the part on the car, and the car on track.  It was a break neck run, for all of the afore mentioned activities.  Tom got the car back together, and out of the garage just in time to be released onto the track for the race.  He fought mightily, and caught up with the pack.  Unfortunately he couldn’t make up all the time, and he finished second to Chris Haunold, but that was a hell of a story wasn’t it?

NASA Utah Round 4 Lightning Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-6

The race saw quite the duel between a pair of unlikely foes: Todd Green in the blue car (his PTE Miata) and Joe Sim in… Well it was an Escort, and it was in PTF.  Todd Chased down Joe, and held him off.  The whole thing was… Ok, it was pretty ridiculous to see Joe’s Escort try and run down Todd’s Miata.  In the end, Joe was DQ’d for reasons I don’t know, and Todd is on his way to another PTE title.

NASA Utah Round 4 Lightning Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-3

Spec Z was a bit interesting.  Chad Aalders blew his motor, so he was borrowing Kyle Schick’s car.  That didn’t go ideally, but Chad made it work.  I saw Arthur, normally someone who does great in the rain, get incredibly slidey.  He slid through turn one like he was trying to qualify for a Formula D round.  It was insanity, lunacy, ridiculousness.  And out of the madness was came one car.  That car was the #46 DXDT Racing Z.  And out of that car climbed James Burke.  He earned that win.

And there it is, a race where the rain fell on the lightning.

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