Targa Miata
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September 14, 2011 - Time for yet another of the classics.
Clarenville. We got some attention on this stage last time as we caught a Corvette, giving a nice David and Goliath story for the TV crews. It's a quick town stage with some really odd sections. Again, my memory served me well. The course has changed slightly since last time, but I was able to recognize the two main sections that had been stitched together, giving an added dimension to Janel's pace notes.
The first time through, we were going pretty well until right near the end. We came over a crest into a left turn at an intersection, and we were too fast. I locked up the wheels and had a brief episode of target fixation on the oncoming curb before coming to my senses and getting the car rotated. First gear and a V8 will let you do that, and we came tearing across the line about 6 seconds early. Perfect.
For the second run, I knew where I could pick up a bit more speed and I definitely knew where I should get rid of a bit more. Our target time was about 7 seconds faster, but between more speed in the opening section and a lack of drama at that one corner I was able to come in 5 seconds early. The car's set up with a bit of extra rear brake bias to make it really easy to rotate into a corner (all rally drivers hate understeer) and that helped me set up for the narrow, tight corner. That plus the knowledge it was there the second time!
So there's a mistake, but not one with any consequences. We've had a couple of little moments at various points, but nothing has bitten us yet. Overall, we're still running fast but conservatively.
tags: targa, 2011 race, exotics, tuning