08th Jun2017

Back in the Bowl: Salt City Drift Round 2

by Michael Chandler

I went and did some drifty stuff in the middle of the Porsche GT3 Cup madness.  Friday night the Salt City Drift folks got together at RMR, and slid the bowl with varying levels of success.  There was a competition, but I bailed long before that went down.  Anyway, here’s a gallery

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02nd Jun2017

Face/Off R32 GT-R

by Michael Chandler

Like many of us, Skitch Bryant fell in love with the Skyline GT-R’s whilst playing Gran Turismo.  Unlike many of us, he imported one.  One that’s a bit different than most of the R32’s you’ll see roaming around.

Yes, despite what the car looks like from the A pillars forward, this is an R32 GTR.  It just has front end conversion, similar to the Bee R 324R.  Unlike the Bee R kit, this one has some R34 Z Tune fenders grafted on to it.  It also has a rear windshield wiper, which is a nice touch.

Under the hood is…

*sips soda*

An RB26DETT that’s been given a lot of NISMO upgrades: N1 turbos and oil pump, bigger intercooler, and other stuff we’ll file under “etc”.  It also has…

A BUNCHA SHINY-ASS HARD PIPES!  And a shiny Top Secret catch can.

All of those pipes, along with the downpipe, exhaust, oil cooler, and oil filter relocation setup are GReddy/Trust pieces.  There are also Spitfire coil packs, and a Cusco strut bar in there, but since it’s an RB26, people will focus on the power adders.  Which is a shame, because this thing has seen some upgrades in the handling department as well.

Behind the NISMO branded Enkei wheels are the OEM brakes and rotors.  And behind them are a set of Cusco Street Zero coilovers, and NISMO stainless steel brake lines and sway bars.  

The interior has been given the NISMO touch as well, in the form of seats, floor mats,…

And 320 kph gauge cluster.  

That orange, blurry thing in the last photo is a MOMO steering wheel, because it can’t be all NISMO all the time.  While we’re here, can we take a minute and appreciate the late 80’s goofy awesomeness that are buttons and switches on the cowl of the gauge cluster?  Man, makes me miss my Legend and its radio controls on the cowl.

Skitch picked up the Bayside Blue Skyline from a seller in Japan.  He did all the paperwork, and flew to Long Beach to drive the car back.  And that drive was interesting, because everyone was snapping photos of the car.  Especially in California.  From the email he sent me (because I forgot some of the details when he told me the story during the shoot):

I stopped at a Walmart along the way in Cali to grab some snacks and supplies for the road trip.  I was literally inside for only about 10-15 minutes and come out to an entire Nissan club with their cars parked next to mine, taking pictures and geeking out over the Skyline.  I asked them how they got here so fast and they told me that one of their members was following me and phoning everyone in the club to come out before the car disappears.  They were super cool and we hung out for a little bit before I had to move on.

Stalkers can be fun sometimes!

People love it at car shows, especially kids.  I love it when the little kids run up to it and recognize that they’ve played the car in a video game or that it’s their favorite color.  Although I wasn’t expecting anyone else to really pay much attention or freak out over the car, it’s fun to know that it’s so well received and love in the community.  After all, I bought this for me and because I love the platform and heritage of the car.  It’s nice to know that others know of the car as well in some form or another

I can attest to the kids freaking out when they see it at a show.  I was the guy shooting the roll in photos at ISS, and when Skitch and the Skyline rolled past, the crowd behind me lost their minds.  

I’m glad that we can finally, legally, have R32s of all varieties.  Especially ones like Skitch’s: super unique, and driven frequently.  Now let’s see some crazy time attack builds!

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12th May2017

Garage Kyusha Spring Matsuri

by Michael Chandler

In the not too distant past, last Sunday A.D. to be exact, Garage Kyusha held their first official meet.  The club brought out their classic J Tin, along with some stuff that was cluttering up their garage and they’d be willing to part with, and took over a corner of one of the parking lots at Cottonwood Regional Park.  I found the park easily, having driven past it quite a bit and being caught in a sudden downpour one time.  Others not so much, despite numerous maps being posted in the Facebook event page.  I blame ALL KNOWING AND BENEVOLENT Google.  Most found it though, and good times were had!

In one corner of the meet, tucked between the cars JDM Legends brought out, the Lamely Group was selling some rare Hot Wheels and other collectables, along side Eric who was slinging some JDM Legends gear.

One of my favorites was this Z20 Soarer, which ironically parked next to an A70 Supra.  I love Soarers, and really wanted to cut the nose off of a Z20 and stick it on Ronda when I had her.  Ahh, what could have been…  Anyway, there was a lot to see, which is why there’s a big gallery attached to this post!  Enjoy it!  And while I’m here, I want to thank the Garage Kyusha guys for organizing a fun meet, that went pretty damn well for it being their first one.  Anyway, GALLERY:

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14th Mar2017

80eighty Scrapefest Premeet

by Michael Chandler

While technically true, the 80eighty Scrapefest premeet was a full eight days before Scrapefest.  Weird?  YOU BET!  Well attended?  DAMN STRAIGHT!  There were a ton of cars in attendance, so many that some resorted to parking in the undeveloped lots near the 80eighty building.

There was a wide variety of cars in attendance.  Everything from clean, modern builds

To some classics

A pretty cool rat rod was there

And that was spitting distance from the R8 that Envision wrapped at Autorama.  Not for, AT.  While the show was going on.  Looks good.

And then there was this guy, who kept staring at me while I was taking pictures of his edgy-ass xB.

So kawaii it causes me physical pain…

Anyway, here’s a big gallery of some of the other cars that were there.  Saturday we’ll be at the track for the first NASA Utah event of the season, then up at Scrapefest on Sunday.

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20th Feb2017

EuroBrews Gallery

by Michael Chandler

It’s the end of a holiday weekend, which is sad.  BUT I have a bunch of photos from one of our local cars & coffee meets: EuroBrews.  It’s an exclusively Euro thing… Except for the R32 GTS4 and the R35 that were there… And the twin turbo Terminator Mustang… But other than that, all Euro.

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02nd Jan2017

Welcome to 2017

by Michael Chandler

New Year, same old us!  Hope you guys didn’t run too hard over the weekend, but if you did we have the cure for… well, not so much a cure, as it is a couple of things to make your first work day of the year a little better.  

 

Team Take Luck: Winterjam 2016 @Sonoma Raceway from Tannerspencercreative on Vimeo.

First up is a clip from Tanner Spencer Creative.  A couple of the Take Luke guys went to Sonoma Raceway (that’s in California) for Winterjam!  Looks like it was a blast.  Hit that HD, and enjoy.

 

Did you know Lyfe Motorsports battled, and defeted the HKS 1000+ R35 GTR?  Did you know they won a briefcase full of cash, and did it at the last second?  Well, now you do.  BUT there’s a bit more to this story, and thankfully JP Films was there to document the event.  Judson threw together an eighteen minute video, complete with interviews with Cole, Kyle, OP, and Jose about their run against the top R35 team in the world.  Smash that HD, pop in your earbuds or headphones, and enjoy.

And there you go, friends and viewing public!  Hopefully these videos make the day go by a little easier.

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

 

14th Nov2016

VegasDrift: Vegas Stuff That Isn’t SEMA

by Michael Chandler

Words and Photos by Michael Chandler

SEMA was over!  Oh glory it was over!  We love going to SEMA, but good lord it gets tedious after a few days.  You see amazing cars, but you see them sitting still.  Static.  Yes, you can admire the craftsmanship (or lack thereof in some cases), but you don’t get to see them do anything.  Thankfully, there was a VegasDrift event the day after the show closed.  Earlier in the week we helped Jason Smith get prepared for the event, so we figured we’d pop in and say hi.

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It took a few hours, but we eventually did see Jason.  Before we did though, we saw Ian Perri.  It was nice to see him, and it was nice to see him drift in person.

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Blaize Potts came down, started a small fire, and did some skids.

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That’s not Scott, that’s Brandon!  Yes, Brandon Wicknick was driving a V8 car.  Will he see the light that is low end torque, and not having to wait for the power to come on?  God willing, he won’t.  

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And Forrest Wang is powered by pizza.  Anyway, here’s a gallery

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19th Oct2016

It’s Over… For Now: Salt City Drift Round 7

by Michael Chandler

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Words and photos by Michael Chandler

It was a nice day out at Utah Motorsports Campus!  Mostly sunny with some intermittent clouds, sport bikes from the Apex Track Days event wailing on the West Track, and tires howling in the West Paddock from the drivers of the final Salt City Drift event of the season.  At the end of the day, there would be two winners crowned: the winner of the event, and the overall season champion!  Let’s see how that all played out:

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In third place in the day’s competition was OP Anderson!  Despite organizing and being one of the guys running the event, and despite having a box stock Saturn Sky Redline as his chariot, he managed to go out and slay enough to get on the podium.

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In second place was the man, the myth, the Southern Dandy: Blaize Potts!  We finally got to see his LS powered FC RX-7 ripping, and rip it did.  Put a pin in this, cause we’re gonna get back to him in a minute.

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Taking home the win was Trevor Malan!  Trevor’s S13 has everything that the internet seems to love: sparkly paint, big Weds wheels, a DMAX kit, JDM nose, it’s dumped, and it’s a ripper.  And it has something I love: a dude behind the wheel who’s down to drive.  Doesn’t matter how cool your car looks, or what parts you’ve thrown on it: if you can’t/won’t drive it like it’s supposed to, then you’re blowing it.

INTERMISSION

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This is John.  I like John, cause he’s down to get weird.  Here he is in his Wisefab equipped E36, munching a cone.  It also has some crazy stiff springs out of the Lyfe Motorsport GTR.  It was quite a sight to behold.

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This is Devin.  His Corolla has Arizona tags, lives in a garage in Michigan, and has a BEAMS 3S-GE under the hood.  He drove, in that Corolla, all the way from Michigan just to drive in this event.  And it isn’t some well sorted, fully developed Corolla.  Very recently it was just a lump of 80’s Toyota, sitting in his garage.  He got the car on the ground, got it running, then got it running well enough to drive across the goddamn country to slay some tires.  Think about that for a second.  Devin is the man.

BACK TO SOME ACTUAL NEWS

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In addition to the actual competition, there were two games being played: limbo and table.  Not quite sure how limbo worked, but the guy who won got some cash.  Good job there, fella!  It looked like Blaize was going to take the table win, until Nick Stucky showed up.  He was having car troubles, but finally managed to get his car running.  He did some tandem with Scott Bradshaw, and then he went for the table.  Name of the game was to drift through the last two turns of the course, then slide your car to a stop next to a table.  You needed to be parallel, or close enough, to the table to be in the running.  Blaize set the bar pretty high, or low, but Nick cleared it in whichever direction was necessary.  He slide to a stop mere inches from the table, on his only table run of the day!

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Speaking of tables (AWKWARD TRANSITION), here’s the podium for the season championship: in third place, with an E30 325, is Hayden Campbell!  He might have taken second if he drove the event, but third isn’t bad!

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In second place is the guy who used two cars this season: Blaize Potts!  He sold the KA24DE powered S13 coupe, and was handsomely rewarded for doing so.  Look at that 2nd place trophy and moderately priced champagne!

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And the winner of the 2016 Salt City Drift driver’s championship is: Nick Nengas!  Proving many things this year (any seat time is good seat time, the 350Z is a solid platform for damn near anything, looking like a child has its benefits) netted him the top spot.  It wasn’t an easy task, there were some guys who could shred, but Nick shredded harder.  Now, what do three guys with champagne do with it after they’ve received awards?

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There was much rejoicing.  And so ends the Salt City Drift season.  It was an enjoyable one, a solid one, and hopefully one that has a bigger succeeding season.  Congratulations to the winners, the people who tried, everyone who came out to support the events, and especially the folks at Salt City Drift.  They’re trying to bolster this community we have by hosting these events, and it’d be killer to see some more folks driving, or even volunteering at these events.

Anywell, until next time, dear readers…

HERE’S A GALLERY!!!

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14th Oct2016

2016 TresDuro: Tres Means Three Part 1

by Michael Chandler

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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.

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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

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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.

 

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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.

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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

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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

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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

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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!

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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.

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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

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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.

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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.

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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

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Off
14th Oct2016

2016 TresDuro: Tres Means Three Part 3

by Michael Chandler

Time Trial C

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With a total time of 7:24.302, Max Dufford claimed a big TTC win.  Having to drive three different tracks in one day, including one that nobody has driven on in a couple of years, is a test for anyone.  Max rose to the occasion, and drove his Boxster to the limits set forth by the modifications allowed in the rulebook!

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Taking home a shiny piece of silver neck wear was Rod Kujaczynski. Still rocking a RaceCo decal, but sans cowboy hat, Rod’s total time was an impressive 7:29.662!

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Bringing home the bronze was Joe Evers, with a total time of 7:30.852.  Three medals went to three people who drive German cars.  Coincidence?  I THINK NOT!

Time Trial D

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Trever “with an E” Pope managed a combined time of 7:53.343, not too bad for running around in a more practical Miata.  Trever is one of the many drivers who helps out, and instructs the HPDE drivers.  The young up and comers, or older up and comers, can learn some things from Trever.  He may be alone in TTD, but he’s consistent and he doesn’t get caught up trying to run down someone in a faster class.

Time Trial E

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Piloting his trusty Mazderati, Tyler Nisonger threw down a total time of 7:41.375.  As you can see in this photo, Tyler saves weight by only having one door mirror.  These are the little things that separate the winners from the “also ran” crowd.

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Erick Gerday also ran, but wasn’t an “also ran”.  His combined time of 8:02.322, while not stellar, is nothing to sneeze at.  Explore the limits of the rulebook a little bit, and get some more seat time, and Erick should start knocking seconds out of that time.

Time Trial B

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Darin Beaudoin, the goofy fella in the best Miata ever, took home the TTB gold.  How?  NO CLUE!  But I do know he waved at me on one of his out laps.  Did I get a picture of it?  NOPE!  Blame Andy Moench.  He was ahead of Darin on track, and waved at me first.  Quick PSA: If you’re going to wave at a photographer do it on an out lap, a pace lap, or a cool down lap.  Don’t do it when you’re trying to set a flyer, or mid race.  It’s one of those things that’s cool for the two of us, but will be infinitely embarassing if I have to write “and as they waved at me, the accidentally dropped two tires off track, which caused them to spin, which got them stuck in the sand trap”.  Ok, with that out of the way we can move on.

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Jan Gerday, running both TT and Spec Z, had a combined time of 7:32.775.  Running six total session in the same car is quite the feat, and it’s validated when you get a medal at the end of the night.

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Another Z getting a medal.  The 350Z is a useful tool in a racing situation, if you know how to use it.  And Justin Jones knows how to use it.  His 7:38.607 was six seconds off the pace of the Spec Z driver Jan Gerday, but eight seconds ahead of fourth place finisher David Muskovitz.

Time Trial 3

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James Pasquier was back, after some noticeable absences in the recent past.  The lack of a doctor’s note notwithstanding, James’s combined time of 7:06.328 got him another gold medal to add to the sizable pile.  I assume it’s a pile.  What I’m trying to say is James wins a lot.

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In a stunning upset, Mechanic Mike Bratsch beat out Andy Moench!  This after Mike helped Andy fix his car between sessions.  Sponsored by crippling instruments of debt, AMEX credit cards, Mike pounded out a 7:08.188.  You can’t drive fast enough to out run your debts Mike.  You just can’t.  Sounds cryptic, but really is absolutely meaningless.

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Andy Moench, with a car fixed by the skilled hands of Mechanic Mike, drove slower than Mechanic Mike.  He did drive all of the sessions, and he wasn’t that much slower than Mike.  His total time was 7:09.727.

Time Trial 2

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Shawn Murphy continued to set records.  He reset his record on the Outer Loop, and took over the East and Full track records.  His car still has a full interior, and he drives it around on the streets.  His total time was 6:37.029.  It was the fastest of the TT drivers.  His car, and how fast it is, hurts my brain.  I don’t understand it, I never will understand it, and I’m ok with that.

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Finishing in second place was Jenn Wolthoff in the Makes & Models Porsche 911 GT3.  Her total time was 7:09.621.  I understand that time, and how fast that car is.  There is no witchcraft involved in it.  Just good, clean, wholesome, pure, unadulterated speed.

Time Trial 1

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TT1 had two drivers who drove in all three races AND all three TT sessions.  And they did it in different cars.  David Gilliland hopped out of his Spec Z and into his Viper T/A.  His 6:58.015 was deserving of a gold medal at the barbecue.  I agree with the decision to give him a gold medal.

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David Bradshaw was a nother Spec Z driver who was jumping between cars all day.  He would jump out of his Spec Z, get some feedback on his race, then hop into his 996 Cup car for a TT session.  Then out of the Cup car, feedback, into the Z, and race.  His game of musical cars didn’t hurt his times, as he ended up with a 7:03.08.

Time Trial Unlimited

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Mike Kresser got himself a gold medal, after playing musical cars like his Lyfe teammate David Bradshaw.  Mike drove like a man possessed and posted a total time of 6:48.304.  Not too bad for a guy with a bad back and another race car to drive.

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Greg Warnock, and his widebody M3, came up just short against Mike’s 997 Cup car.  His total time was 6:58.414.  Again, not bad for someone who was pulling double duty all day.  And if you’re someone who says “I hate flares!”, then you haven’t seen this car turning laps.  It needs those flares to cover the massive slicks it uses to grip the tarmac.  You don’t hate flares, you just hate useless and/or ugly flares.

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Rounding out the top three is James “1000% not Jordan” Collier.  Less than two seconds separated him from Greg.  James’s total time in his Viper ACR was 7:00.335.  Notice how a lot of the photos are with the headlights on?  That’s because they got way behind schedule at some point.  So far, in fact, that the final TT session got underway AFTER sunset.  I made the most of it, and got some very cool pictures.  The corner worker at Tooele Turn had a brief, but loud meltdown.  We were all out of our comfort zone, corner worker.  But we survived.

And there it is, at least for TT.  Looking for Thunder and/or Lightning coverage?  I’ve got them in separate posts.

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

 

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