Targa Miata
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September 16, 2011 - The final results have not yet been released for the Open class.
According to my understanding of the rules, we have finished third. It all depends on if one car is counted as a finisher. We were 4:59 behind the winners...and we took that 5:00 penalty for the bad main relay. Sigh. Still, it tells me we could run with the big boys. We got to the end of the week safe and with a car that had proven to be pretty darn reliable. We changed an ignition coil on Day 2 to prevent a problem and identified why it may have been weak. And then the bone stock original Mazda main relay let us down. Otherwise, it took an incredible amount of abuse on fast, rough roads. The predictable handling and excellent suspension let me take full advantage of the huge power. It was actually quite shocking that, even in the wet, I could give it nearly full throttle in first gear if I got moving without breaking the tires free. Bystanders reported that I was coming off the line as well as many of the Subarus in the wet. Overall, everyone said the car looked very well planted and a number of teams were quite complimentary on how well it was set up. We also got a few comments on how the two of us were packed into the car.
I think it was a surprise to a lot of people, and we've proven the car has the ability to win the whole shebang even with a less experienced crew. Maybe someday we'll get a chance to come back and give it another shot.
Our goals were to finish, to bring home a Targa plate and hopefully place well. We managed the first, just missed the second and did fairly well on the third. Both of our biggest challengers failed to make the finish line.

More details later once the results of a number of inquiries (rally-speak for "requests for corrections") have been addressed.
tags: targa, 2011 race, exotics, tuning