09th Mar2017

Mustangs and Geneva: The CAMcast

by Michael Chandler

Ahoy hoy folks!  We’re so glad you could join us for another episode of the CAMcast.  This week we were down a Pizza Dad, but chock full of stuff to talk about:

  • Geneva Auto Show highlights
  • Lamborghini’s video shenanigans
  • Salt City Drift schedule
  • Driving a BOSS 302 Laguna Seca in Las Vegas
  • And why you should probably avoid the Hooter’s Hotel and Casino

We appreciate you guys subscribing, rating, commenting, sharing, and interacting with this podcast.  Please keep doing all of that, and maybe pitch this to someone who doesn’t really listen to podcasts?  The #trypod campaign is in full swing this month, and it’s main purpose is to introduce podcasts to people who don’t listen to them, or don’t know what they are.  Odds are that you know someone who’d like us, but doesn’t know the how’s and what’s and all of that.  Spread the word!

07th Feb2017

The Relevant Super Bowl Commercials

by Michael Chandler

Like most people, I spent my Sunday evening at a Super Bowl party.  Gorging myself on wings and cocktail shrimp, and half-watching the game.  I also managed to half-watch the commercials, and since this is an automotive enthusiast site, we’re gonna take a look at the eight automotive commercials that aired.  Let’s start with Audi.

Audi

It’s called “Daughter”.  The daughter is in a soapbox derby, and she’s the only girl in the field.  The voice-over is the father asking himself what he is going to tell his daughter about her value, because she (and the rest of us) live in a world where women, on average, make less than men.  It’s not selling a car, although they show an S5 sedan at the end.  It’s promoting them being committed to equal pay for equal work, which is a very noble thing.  As a car ad, it’s not that great.  Considering that they showed off a sedan version of one of their coupes, which means that they’ll be making sedan versions of their coupes, which makes me irrationally angry.  As a PR piece, it was ok.

Buick

Buick is still trying to convince people that they’re not building transportation for the elderly.  An admirable goal, but Buick is always gonna have that stigma.  The ad is funny: Cam Newton destroys pee-wee football players, and Miranda Kerr shows up.  I still think Buicks are sleds for the elderly, and this ad doesn’t really change that.

FCA

They came out with two 1 minute spots, and a 30 second spot for the Alfa Romeo Giulia.  One is about returning to greatness, Riding On The Backs of Dragons, another is about predictability, Dear Predictable, and the last one is all of the cliches you could want when talking about an Alfa, Mozzafiato.  It’s pretty hard to make the Giulia look bad, and it’s a trick to make the Quadrifoglio sound bad.  Thankfully the car looks and sounds amazing in the spots, and I want one even more now.  The spots show off the car really well, and hopefully this means we’ll see more of them running around in the wild.

Ford

Like Audi, Ford didn’t show off any particular vehicle.  This was them showing off how they’ll help you (or whoever) get around in the future.  Bike sharing, Transit vans on call, vehicles that can hard park themselves.  The future is looking bright for the Blue Oval!  Or whatever.  All I know is that they’ll be pounding out F-Series trucks until the sun expands and engulfs our little, blue marble.  Did anyone else relate to some of those bad luck scenarios in the first half of that commercial?  A few of those hit too close to home for me…

Honda

The Honda ad, which was slinging the new CRV, was inspiring and creepy.  Using technology, they animated various celebrities’ year book photos.  That was the creepy part.  The inspiring part was what the celebrities were saying.  And I’m not sure the CRV, while a decent little crossover, is not the most aspirational vehicle they could be pitching…  Meh, it still works.

Kia

Melissa McCarthy, a treasure, keeps trying to defend nature.  And nature absolutely wrecks here.  Up to this point, this is the ad that is the most cohesive.  It’s pitching the Niro (pronounced Nee-ro), which is apparently the most fuel efficient crossover.  It fits with Mrs. McCarthy trying to be an eco-warrior, although hopefully it doesn’t fail like she did.  The Niro looks pretty good, and I’m curious to see what the interior looks like.

Lexus

Lexus showed off the LC500, a damn fine looking vehicle.  There was something about emotion in there, but all I remember is hearing the glorious engine noise.  And the dancing, but mostly the engine noise.  Again, damn fine looking vehicle.

Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes-Benz knows that your dad and his golf buddies are probably going to buy the new AMG GT Roadster, so they got Peter Fonda to reprise his role from Easy Rider for their ad.  They also know that you’ll be watching this along side them, so the tapped the Coen brothers to direct it.  It’s not a bad ad, has some humor, and Peter Fonda is still pretty bad ass.  And odds are that if you were on board for the AMG GT, then you’re on board for an al fresco version.  

And that’s the lot of them.  Let us know which was your favorite, which you hated (I’ve got an idea where some of you will go with this), and if you’ve made it this far you deserve a treat.  So, here’s the Logan ad:

*Article, Photos, Videos, and Audio clips are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
30th Nov2016

CAMcast Weekly November 29

by Michael Chandler

We’re back!  And we’re weekly (probably), until the race season starts!  In this episode Michael ,and co-hosts Brandon Christiansen and Dave Rawley, talk about Audi leaving the WEC, the new 911 RSR’s lack of forced induction, fashion, and the Taurus Challenge.  Give it a listen, and subscribe via RSS until I can get this thing on iTunes and Stitcher.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
17th Nov2016

Mustang GT4: A Pony for the World’s Racers

by Michael Chandler

mustang-gt4-sema-2016-michael-chandler-camautomag-1

Seeing a Mustang racing at an IMSA or World Challenge race isn’t a surprising sight.  Seeing one racing in Europe, duking it out with the emerging GT4 cars (M4 GT4, Cayman GT4 Clubsport, McLaren 570 GT4) is about to become a reailty.

mustang-gt4-sema-2016-michael-chandler-camautomag-3

Multimatic, the people who build the racing Mustangs and all of the Ford GTs, took a new Shelby GT350R, and made it so it could play in Europe, Asia, anywhere that is adopting the new GT4 rule set.  Places like IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge (GS class) and Pirelli World Challenge (GTS/G4).  The car retains the 5.2 liter flat-plane crank V8, but mates it with a 6 speed, paddle shifted transmission.  It has dampers, lower control arms, and rear stabilizers bars that will take the abuse of the different series it’ll be seeing.

mustang-gt4-sema-2016-michael-chandler-camautomag-4

It even comes with an FIA compliant roll cage.  And a fancy switch panel!  

mustang-gt4-sema-2016-michael-chandler-camautomag-2

It also sports revised aerodynamics, complete with words of caution.  Expect to see the car storming around in the coming years.  And if you’re thinking of getting into GT4 racing, take a look at this slice of Americana

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
14th Oct2016

2016 TresDuro: Tres Means Three Part 1

by Michael Chandler

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-61

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

The 2016 NASA Utah season came to an end this past weekend.  I know, I’m sad too.  But instead of the usual, conventional, “one track configuration for the entire weekend” business that we’ve seen at every other weekend this year; Dave, Matt, and Momma NASA (Cheri Miller) had something special for the end of the year.  Instead of running the Outer Loop, or the East track, or even the Full track, they arranged it so the drivers could race on ALL THREE IN THE SAME DAY!!! Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the TresDuro.

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-198

IT’S BACK, BABY!  Just like last year, and the year before; BUT, unlike last year, they were blowing the dust off the gigantic Full track.  To the best of my knowledge, the last time the Full track was run was two years ago.  I should probably explain how one wins the TresDuro, since it has been a year.  It’s pretty simple for the race groups: you qualify once, and start the first race from that position.  Where you finished in that race is where you start the next race from.  Where you finish also gives you points.  Driver/team with the most points at the end of the third race wins.  For TT: they take your fastest times on each track, add them together, and person with the lowest overall time is the winner.  Got it?

It’s been a hot minute, but the drivers managed to drive the track without getting lost or forgetting which configuration they were driving!  However, the weekend wasn’t without incident.  That incident, while unfortunate, provides a convenient segue into the actual race coverage.

THUNDER

German Touring Series Unlimited

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-257

Taking home the win in GTSU by a mere 5 points was Makes & Models, in their Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo 620-2.  Their main competition throughout the day was David Donner, in his Porsche 911GT3R.  You know, the other Effort Racing car that showed up at Air Power Racing at the beginning of this year.  David had the pace to run away with it, but a broken axle in race 2 served up the win to Makes & Models.  The TresDuro would hinge on the third and final race.  The Lamborghini was on the pole, and Les Long’s 997 Cup car was starting from second.  And then this happened.

This is video of the start of the third race, shot from Michael Eifling’s ST1 Corvette.  It was uploaded by Brendon Stewart, driver of the Makes & Models Huracan.  FULL DISCLOSURE: I’ve known Brendon for many years, long before he was working and driving for Makes & Models.  Makes & Models has been friendly with us, we have stickers on the Huracan and a few other Makes & Models cars.  That said, it’s pretty clear Les makes a move to the left to keep the Lamborghini behind him.  Then as the Lambo starts moving to his right and passing him, he moves to the right and pushes him West pit out.  The result of all of these moves was the Huracan spinning out in turn one, and having to rejoin at the back of the field.  Despite that, Brendon fought through the field and finished second.

 

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-210

5 points behind Makes & Models was David Donner.  It’s been a few rounds since we’ve seen him at UMC, but he’s been spending that time wisely.  He’s very in tune with the 911 GT3R, and showed INSANE pace in the first race.  Good God was he flying!  David, I’m begging you!: come out for more races!  I’d love to see you, David Lockwood, Derek, and the DXDT guys have an all out death match (not really a battle to the death, but you know what I mean) one NASA weekend.  Do it for me, do it for the children, do it for America!  Or England if your James Burke.

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-146

In third place, with 255 points, was Les Long.  He narrowly edged out David Lockwood for the final podium spot.  Les is a really good driver, but I’m not used to seeing him drive as aggressively as he did on Saturday.  From what I’ve seen over the years, he is most definitely not a dirty driver.  Just an aggressive driver, something we typically enjoy.  While he may be at fault for the incident at the beginning of the third race, I think he just got caught up in the heat of the moment.

Super Touring 1

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-150

Being alone in a class has advantages sometimes, and Michael Eifling took full advantage of being the sole ST1 driver.  He took the fight to Robert Gardner, in the orange Jagermeister Porsche, and they had amazing battles all day long.  Good on ya Michael!  Thanks for not just turning laps, and taking the easy win.  Also, thank for bringing Buddha!

Super Touring 2

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-351

ST2 started the day with two competitors: JR Smith in his Porsche Boxster, and Toby Crawford in his Subaru BRZ.  By the end of the first race, there was only one.  The head gaskets in Toby’s BRZ let go, allowing the man, the myth, the legend that is JR Smith to take the win.

Super Touring 3

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-211

ST3 had a field of 5 cars: four of the Ford Performance Racing School BOSS 302 FRSes and the Minion mobile, the UAO Clothing M3.  I know I saw Alex in the car on Saturday, so I’m going to say it was he who won the shiny, not chocolate filled gold medal for ST3.  I’m sure I’ll hear about it if I’m wrong, but until then: congratulations Alex! UPDATE: Todd Ainsworth also drove on Saturday. Matt Guiver probably wasn’t in the car on Saturday, so we can rule him out.  So congratulations Todd and Alex on the win!

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-59

In second place was Frank Gannett.  Frank the Tank has been pounding away in that Mustang, and doing a damn good job too.  Hopefully we see Frank in a different chassis next season, preferably one that doesn’t belong to the fine folks at the Ford Performance Racing School.

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-353

Rounding out the podium was Josh Williams, in the #85 FPRS BOSS 302 FRS.  It’s in my favorite color, which makes it the best looking Mustang they have at the school.  Ask for it by name!

Super Unlimited

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-352

Super Unlimited also had a five car field, but unlike the ST3 field there wasn’t a dominant model in the field.  There was; however, a dominant team: CA Sport.  They represented four of the five cars, the fifth being George Smith’s Corvette.  It was also a rather diverse field: the aforementioned Corvette, a PWC TC Class 370Z, a widebody E92 M3, and a pair of Cayman GT4 Clubsports.  It was one of those Caymans, the #41 driven by Andrew Smith, that took home the win.

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-202

Chasing Andrew was Davis Warnock, in the #70 CA Sport Cayman GT4 Clubsport.  It was really fun watching these two cars duke it out for first place, and mix it up with some of the other classes.  And the new liveries look great.

nasautah2016tresduromichaelchandlercamautomag-141

Locking out the podium for CA Sport was Lara Tallman in the 370Z.  Hey!  I just noticed that it has one blue mirror!  I like that.  And also congratulations to CA Sport for locking out the podium!  That quite the feat, especially considering who all could’ve run in the class and taken a spot on the podium.

And there you have it for Thunder!  Looking for Lightning or Time Trial?  I’ve got those in their own posts, so you don’t have a 3000+ word article to rifle through

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 7: The Penultimate Round!

by Michael Chandler

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-2

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-17

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-3

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!

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-16

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

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-1

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.

specz

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

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-4

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

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-5

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…

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-18

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-7

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.

nasa-utah-2016-round-7-camautomag-1

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

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-19

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-20

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-6

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-12

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-15

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-14

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!

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-9

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-10

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

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-8

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-13

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.

nasaut2016rd7michaelchandlercamautomag-11

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.

 

13th Sep2016

NASCARGASM

by Michael Chandler

knproserieswestumc910michaelchandlercamautomag-25

Words and Photos by Michael Chandler

After far too long, the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West came back to Utah Motorsports Campus.  Last time around they were on the East Course, but this time they were on the Outer Loop.  Home to Witchcraft, and the massive front straight that dumps car into a big left hander, the drivers had their hands full.  But these guys are professionals, so they handled it… for the most part.

knproserieswestumc910michaelchandlercamautomag-1

Starting on pole for both days of the Utah 110 presented by Ken Garff Volvo was Ryan Partridge.  He set a qualifying time of 1:54.0 for Saturday’s race, then drove the #9 Eibach Springs/Sunrise Ford/Lucas Oil Ford Fusion to a disappointing ninth place finish.  He did have the fastest lap of the race, which put him on the pole for Sunday’s race.  However, his luck was surprisingly similar because…

knproserieswestumc910michaelchandlercamautomag-4

Noah Gragson, in the #7 Speed Vegas/AlertID/Colliers International Ford, took home the win on both days!  He managed the win on Sunday with a last lap pass on Todd Gilliland.  That’s it for the reporting on the race, now for something different.

knproserieswestumc910michaelchandlercamautomag-34

Now, a lot of people will come out and camp for a multi-day race.  Plenty of people did it for World Challenge, and plenty of people do it for NASCAR races of all levels.  This weekend was no exception.  If you’ve seen a Sprint Cup race, then you’ve seen what the campers at those races can do.  While this was a smaller series, the people were just as willing to have a good time, and they were willing to bring others into that good time as well.  I was one of those others, but I had to decline the invite.  Damn this “job”.  Anyway, I hope you fine people see this and had a good time!  It was nice chatting with you, and meeting your dog.

nascar-dog-2016-camautomag-1

That dog being this pug.  Who is named Borris Said.  You were an angry little fella, probably upset that you couldn’t finish in the mid-pack in either of the weekend’s races.  It’s ok though, I think you’re a good doggo.

BOOGITY BOOGITY BOOGITY!  LET’S CHECK OUT THE GALLERY!!!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
14th Aug2016

Pirelli World Challenge at the Grand Prix of Utah GTS Race 2

by Michael Chandler

PWC 2016 Sunday GTS Race Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-2

The madness that is a Pirelli World Challenge GTS class race has risen and fallen.  This race had all the staples of a great race: close racing, plenty of passes, near misses, and some not misses.  The field, which features everything from the GT4 spec KTM X-Bow up to the almost too powerful Camaro ZL1.  In the end, one driver would rise to the top.  Stand on the highest step, and therefor have the strategic advantage in the champagne spraying that happens at every podium event.  That man is Scott Heckert.

PWC 2016 Sunday GTS Race Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-3

Scott, in the lone Sin R1 GT4, overtook Brett Sandberg (#13 KTM X-Bow GT4) and held off Nate Stacy (#14 Ford Mostang BOSS 302S) at the beginning of the race, and held on to the lead for the rest of it.  A late race full course yellow, brought on by the #29 Ginetta of Harry Gottsacker colliding with the #46 Lotus of Scott Dollahite, cut Heckert’s massive lead down to nil.  However, on the restart, he built back that lead, as Nate Stacy and Brett Sandberg battled each other for position.

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

NASA Utah Round 5: The Melty Way

by Michael Chandler

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-63

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-37

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!

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-96

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-66

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-61

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-95

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-97

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-99

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?

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-60

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-11

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-15

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-12

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-13

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-94

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-93

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-9

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-91

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-30

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-90

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-38

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.

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-44

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

NASA Utah 2016 Round 5 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-92

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.
14th Jun2016

Showers In The Vicinity: NASA Utah Round 4 TT Results

by Michael Chandler

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-1-2

After a week of blistering heat, and the sun beating down upon those who dared venture out into its rays; the Saturday that followed was different.  Not the opposite, as that would be cloudy, with freezing temperatures and frozen precipitation falling and accumulating everywhere.  No, this was different.  It was colder, but not cold.  It was cloudy, but there were glimpses of blue sky.  There wasn’t frozen precipitation gathering on the track, but there were “showers in the area.”  At least that’s what my phone told me as I was trudging back to my car to get my rain gear, in the midst of a sudden, intense shower.  But while I was playing chicken with the weather behind the armco, on the tarmac were drivers dueling the clock.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-5

After months of being behind the wheel of Paul Mitchell, and in the garage working on his car, Todd Green finally got the blue car race ready.  And it was quite the debut.  He took home a pair of wins on the day, but for our purposes we’ll focus on the 1:45.34 lap time that secured his TTE win.  I’m not sure what he’s done exhaust wise, but the car sounds rowdy!  So much so that I was caught off guard when he came down the back straight.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-6

Jeb Brown was out and about in his Miata, when he wasn’t instructing.  Between imparting knowledge and trying to stay dry, Jeb managed to lay down a 1:54.032 in TTD.  That was good enough to hand Trever Pope his second place finish in the last six race days.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-4

I noticed a gorgeous, gray 911 as I was walking through the Day Garages.  The golden class and number stickers leaped off the paint, and the car stood out amongst the BRZs and 3 Series that sought shelter in the garage with it.  I knew I had to keep an eye out for the car when it was on track, and good thing I did.  Joe Evers drove the widow maker to a win in TTC, laying down a best time of 1:49.2.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-3

For the second time in… well ever, we had an Aerial Atom running competitive laps.  Very competitive laps.  Steve Marx came out of nowhere, and drove his high downforce jungle jim to a win in TTB.  How fast can some tubing with a motor strapped to it move?  His best lap on the sub-par day (weather wise) was 1:43.389.  Not bad for something that is completely, and utterly insane.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-1-3

It was a battle of the BRZs in TT3, as has been the norm for the majority of the season.  Despite there being what would appear to be better cars in the class, it’s been Mike and Andy dueling for the top two spots all season.  This day saw a third competitor cut into their dance.  Despite his best efforts, James Pasquier couldn’t out run Andy, who put up a 1:39.227 in the ever changing conditions.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-1

In his usual fashion, Alex managed to elude me all day.  He eluded me everywhere, except when he was on track.  Despite all of the witchcraft happening under the hood of the Focus of Doom, he could not escape my lens.  I managed to catch him as he was on his way to a win in TT2.  His best time of the day was a staggering 1:35.303.  Amazing, considering that he’s in a home-brewed, front wheel drive, big turbo Focus.  To put that into perspective: he was faster than a Noble, a Porsche Cayman GT4 Club Sport, several 911’s, and Wade Hall’s Mustang which puts down enough power to alter the Earth’s rotation.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-7

Front wheel drive has certain advantages in adverse conditions.  Having the weight of the engine over the driven wheels helps to keep the rubber on the tarmac, and not sliding across the water on top of it.  It has some disadvantages too (understeer, having the driven wheels also doing the braking AND steering), but like Alex and his Focus, Zack Serna has tamed those disadvantages.  He took his supercharged, K series powered Civic hatchback to brave new heights and set a time of 1:40.995.  It held up to the rain, the wind, and the charging Noble of Kam Urquhart.

NASA Utah Round 4 TT Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-2

Speaking of Porsche Caymans, one was atop the TTU ladder.  I say “one” because there were two running in the same group.  Both sported prime numbers, and both were white.  According to the results on My Laps (what I’m going off of, because that’s all I’ve got at the moment) the #11 car was the winner, laying down a 1:36.963.  This is where things get tricky.  Greg Warnock is on the list as the winner, driving the #11 car.  As you can see in the photo above, Jeff Kearl drives the #11.  Greg has the #07, and in a weird twist is also third in TTU (in the #07 car).  Now, they could’ve very easily hopped in the other’s car.  Or there could be some other mix up, I don’t know.  Either way, one of them won and the other came in third, with Wade Hall sandwiched in the middle.

And there it is, a comprehensive and wordy review of Saturday’s TT action.  We’ll be back with Thunder and Lightning coverage, and a gallery of some of the rooster tails that were kicked up as the rains were falling, later this week.

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