Got an interesting story to tell.
Yesterday was my first day that I took part in an official race. I've been to our local track quite often to practice. Two of our top 3 drivers at national level, are members at our track. So it was tough to make a decision to take part in a race meeting with them. (Donít want to be a moving chicane on the track.
So, Yesterday I arrived at the track nice and early, set up my pit area. Then I had a chat with a couple of the guys to try and get the nerves down. I was grouped with the slower guys at the track. So that made me feel a little bit more relaxed.
About 15 minutes before the start of our heat, I thought, well let me just go through my car and make sure everything works fine. Checked the whole car and every thing seemed fine. Then I connected my batteries and switched on my Transmitter and receiver, and then .....................
Then the steering just turned to the left and got stuck there. I had a spare servo and connected it to the receiver and it worked fine. So I had about 10 minutes to replace the steering servo. Got it done with about 3 min to go.
Standing on the drivers stand, I could see my hands shaking. I started from 4th position, and going into the second turn, one of the guys hit me from behind and my car spun out. Guess what position I was in then.... Yes I was last. The only thing that came out of my mouth was... Ahh F...CK. Then I was about half the length of the back straight behind the second last lap.
It took me about 2 laps to catch up to him. Then things started to happen for me. Guys in front of me started making mistakes. They were spinning out. Braking to late, hitting each other. All of a sudden I was running 3rd.
I finish the first heat in 3rd position after starting 4th, being taken out, to last position and then fighting my way back to third. (Which included at least two big role overs.) My rear tyres had chunks ripped out of it. I had to replace them for the next heat.
I then started the second heat in 3rd position. On the second lap I pasted the guy in second place on the back straight. I couldn't believe that my OS TZ Zeppin mod motor as actually faster than his JP FX 3M motor. (YES, YES, YES I know there could be various reasons for his car to look slow. Tuning/Gearing/...).
The guy in first place was faster than me and started to pull a gap on me.
On about lap 8, he had an engine problem and had to retire. Guess where I was.
Yes, I was leading the race. It was very difficult to concentrate. I just said to myself..."Just stay on the road, donít do any stupid things".... and I didnít.
So when I got of the driver stand, I was smiling for about 5 minutes. Itís a good thing that I had a pair of ears on my head; otherwise my smile would have been all the way around my head. Allot of the guys congratulated me on this as I've spent allot of time practicing with them, but would never enter on a race day.
Still being very in-experienced in racing, I wasnít paying much attention to my car after this. What could go wrong now? When the time arrived for the third heat I switched on me transmitter and receiver, they battery on the car just seemed dead. So the race started with out me. I replaced the battery, and could only join with about 2 minutes left. I finished last. I donít know why this happened. Normally my batteries lasted a whole day of practice. BUT, I did learn my lesson.
Soon after all the heats were done, the rankings for the final were posted on the notice board. I did not seem my name in the group that I run in. I was thinking "did I do something wrong, did the computer throw my name out, or was I disqualified?"
Then I looked at the next sheet, and there my name was. I qualified for the A-main on my first race day. I was excited and scared at the same time. I was going to start in 9th position. Some of the racers at the club said that I should just concentrate and try to stay on the racing line.
The final started and I was happy being at the back of the grid. I knew that I would not be in someoneís way, or do something stupid. The race was on and I was just going at my pace. Guys were falling over their own feet (or should I say wheels). After about 5minutes I heard over the speaker system that I was in 7th position. After 15minutes I was in 4th. I thought that there must be something wrong with the timing system, because almost all the cars were still on the track. I must have over taken some of them in the pits or something as I only remember passing 3 guys on track when they made mistakes. I realized that I was actually still in 4th with about 7 minutes to go. At this stage some of the cars behind me have retired and we were only 7 cars left on the track. (My pit guy told me this after the race. As I would not try to count other cars on the track while I'm racing.)
Then, 2 laps later my car just stopped. My heart almost did as well. We retrieved my car to the pits and tried to start it up again. I thought that it was running to hot. I check the motor temperature and the temperature was fine.
We tried again and again, but it just wouldn't start. Then my pit guy checked the glow plug... All I have to say, itís was the dam glow plug. At this stage there were less than two minutes left to go. So I just retired myself form the race. At then end of the race when they put results up, I'd done enough laps to put me in 6th position.
In the end I was happy with the results for my first race.
About this R40, I can only say the following.
WOW, This car can be fast. On some of the laps I could stay up with the guys with their Mugen MTX-4s and modified JP engines. My Zeppin modified OS TZ 3 port with my OS pipe could keep up with these guys on the infield and back straight. (At about $100 less that the cost off their motors) The only thing that couldn't keep up was my driving skills.
The guy that finished first said to me after the race that he had an R40 and sold it to get the mugen. But he never had the hara edition. He used to race with the stock R40, and it just became to slow, compared to the other cars.
He even asked me if he could take it for a spin the next time that we are practising at the track.
I think that this post could be close to one off the longest posts ever, but I just had to share it with the other R40 members.