photo by www.leded.com Motorsports Photography!
We’re in the thick of it now. Summer is passing so quickly and things are busy at the shop. “busy is good?” well, not always. We hate rushing; everyone does. In an ideal situation we could all pool our skills on one car at a time giving that car full concentration of intellectual assets. That’s the ideal. With crashes, broken clutches, worn brakes and race cars that need tuning by tomorrow things never operate smoothly and the only way to compensate for inefficiency is to work more, work harder. Busy is good.
There hasn’t been an update since Ken Stouffer was kind enough to write about us in his My Life At Speed Blog which is gaining major traction after some serious Pike’s Peak coverage. Out here on the east coast, things were notably simpler at Mt Washington Hillclimb which, in perfect Yankee fashion there were no manufacturers aside from Subaru, no carbon fiber prototypes, no television networks, just some serious steel and serious drivers. Reading about Pike’s Peak had me envious of their huge event until I did Climb To the Clouds and thought how perfect it was that the right people were there, the right amount of “extra” effort to mark it as a special event and not push it into that place where the participants and audience’s expectations were built and not met.
The team did great. Kevin Rhoads drove well and would have placed high in H4 had his motor stayed together. We made the discovery of a low-on-compression cylinder 4 days before the event. (wish we hadn’t checked!) and lost some sleep on what to do. A new motor just didn’t come together as we were doing exactly that on Mike Sureau’s STI. We all hoped Kevin’s car would hold together for one last hurrah but it didn’t, letting go on day 2 of practice. Back at the machine shop his new motor was in process. If it were only a month ahead of time. Bill’s car performed better than ever (in my opinion) laying down some serious times in the wet for a 2wd car making it’s way up to 4th place in seeding. His second timed run (and also second run at speed to the top) would have been significantly faster because it was drying out and he could finally turn the power up. That effort was curtailed by a loose shift fork in his Saenz transmission which stuck him in between gears and on the side of the hill. The Pleasure Evo performed well, showing no signs of slowing after a long vacation (unlike it’s driver) The car required no service over 3 days of use which is a new record by 2.8 days. Bill’s huge efforts on making the car a complete working unit with parts that last paid off for me in a big way. My last run of the weekend landed me in 5th overall. Bill took second in Class behind James Melhuish. I was really happy to race with some of the guys 0n that start list. I think we all were.
We’re hoping to run again next year. At least the three of us know what to expect now and we all know that we can go a lot faster.
Dent Sport Garage has a YouTube Channel now. Where we’ve compiled some new videos from this season. We’ll be adding to it. Please subscribe.
At STPR we brought home the goods and with Maine (New England Forest Rally) coming we’re running Ramana Lagemann’s 2010 Subaru STI again in Super Production. Ramana’s season has been shaping up. Scot has been working hard with Bill on re-preping the car. The ATL fuel cell had a small leak from being hit by a big rock, and went out for repairs. The front and rear differentials have undergone some real testing now and with OS-Giken onboard with the team we’ve been able to get the car much closer to the way Ramana wants it. OS differentials have a very good amount of adjustment and this has helped in dialing the handling of the newer 2008+ GR chassis STi. The effort is showing and the results are coming. Scot spent a huge amount of time tending to details for this coming event.
We’ve had great customer success at the track so far this summer as well. Troy Velazquez, Brendan Mulcahy, Eric Heinrich, Jeff Wasilko all had killer finishes, some records even at Mosport for the club, Heads Up Motorsports gets pole and win as well as outside pole/win at NER SCCA season opener in their Miata, all cars tuned by Matt K here at the shop. Just this weekend Jeff Baker took a win at NHMS in COM’s time Trial Series in ST-4 class. With Matt’s Megasquirt tuning. So far so good!
The BMW 2002/SR20det is coming along. Most remaining small Nissan parts are ordered and the engine is almost ready to go into the car for good. It’s been a long road for this project and we’re all happy to see that it’s almost done. This summer we’ve done 5 Subaru motors so far. There’s another one coming. We’ve been using Vigilant Motorsports for shortblock assembly since the disappearance of Ron at Axis. Sean at Vigilant has been producing some reliable shortblock assemblies for us with good customer service. Bill is conducting two transmission rebuilds at the moment, both Subaru. One 6 speed and one 5 speed. Six speed Subaru transmissions stay together very well but under racing conditions require upkeep such as bearings and syncros after every few rallies or every few seasons in a track car. The SP rally cars are hardest on them.
Bill has been invited to write for the popular motorsport website, MotoIQ. Possible subjects could include an inside look at a current SP rallycar, the 240RS Maxi, antilag systems, and a few of our hillclimb/time trial ventures. Other contributors include chassis/suspension guru Mike Kojima, Cosworth’s Eric Hsu, SCC’s Dave Coleman and Garrett’s Khiem Dinh Check it out.