Time Attack 2021 Round 4 – Oulton Park

I had always considered Oulton to my #2 on my favorite circuits despite never actually driving it and this weekend confirmed what an awesome circuit it was and it remains #2. Cadwell Park taking #1 obviously…

The first session i decided to use to learn the circuit, but quickly started to gain more confidence in the car and the circuit. A hurdle i had to overcome however is the brakes were now pretty sharp. Previously had EBC Yellow Fitted and the pedal became pretty soft after a couple laps of getting them warm.

I decided to try some EBC Blue for Oulton and i was not disappointed in their performance. The pedal remained sharp and felt great all day. Their performance however seemingly lifted the rear of the car causing the rear end to be light and unsettle the car, something which i was able to control and predict as the day went on.

We ended warm-up on a 1:50.460. I noticed oil had started to accumulate on the passenger’s side of the windscreen. After returned to the pits we discovered the Crank to rocker cover hose was loose and night tight. A simple quick fix however became a disaster as someone then over tightened the rocker cover and cracked it….

FUCK SAKE!!!!!! With no spare rocker cover (I Mean, who brings a spare rocker cover?!), RTV was generously applied to the area and a tea towel wedged and cabled tied to absorb any potential oil leak. And luckily, it didn’t leak for the remainder of the day with the tea towel remaining dry through to the end.

Also During Warm-up, I’m sure i heard a sound I’ve heard before… Which suggest a wheel was loose. Checking in the pits found all wheel nuts where tight and torqued to spec. jacking the front of the car up revealed the front driver’s wheel has some excessive play again. The hub nut appeared tight, but another ½ Turn is all it needed to remove that play and we were back in business.

2nd Session, Practice remained un-eventful. We finished with a 1:50.530. By this point the temperature had started to soar and the tyres started to overheat. I kept a keen eye on the temperature gauge and we peaked at 95-100 degrees at one point. But a simple ½ Cool down lap soon brought the temps down to 85-90. Other than the car… The driver has overheating. They had kept us in the holding lanes for quite a whilst and with little to no winder during the car, sat in the car with full race gear on isn’t fun, there was also zero airflow in the car when at speed which I’m looking to sort before the next round. Returned to the Pits for a quick check up, refuel for the next session. Quick note is that the wideband sensor also failed so I was unable to keep and eye on fueling…

3rd Session, By this point is was F’Kin Hot… We ended the session with a 1:50.666. Slower yet again… I had noticed in this session though, (I thought I had heard it in the previous session) was around 6500rpm, the engine had a noticeable drop in power (You can hear it in the video if you listen carefully – sounds like the engine is being choked).

I initially thought maybe the supercharger belt was slipping, but belt slip was fairly loud and noticeable. I had concluded that in the end, that maybe the ECU was pulling ignition timing due to extreme high Intake Temps. Something that every competitor was struggling with, Except we just didn’t have the Data logging capabilities to confirm this…

Final session of the Day, with no chance of a podium, I changed my goal to achieving a 1:49 Lap (It also makes us look a fast on the time sheets as i was the only driver in the 1:50’s)

So…. I changed my tactics. I had concluded over the previous sessions that instead of breaking for druids and going down to 3rd, I could point the car where I wanted by simply lifting of the throttle for a split second and not going down to 3rd, remaining in 4th down to Lodge. After following Other drivers previously, I noticed they turned in a lot later than I did at Lodge. After trying this myself I realized why.

So for my last two laps of the final sessions with the above tactics, netted me with a 1,49:96 on Lap 6! F’kin Aye!!!! Fist pumped the air with joy. I had a cool down lap to catch a breather… and then I thought, fuck it… Lets try and better than that… So hanging on for dear life through druids, the final lap of the session netted me with a 1:49.630! Result! Dead chuffed that I had for once… achieved my goal for the day.

And that’s the end of the day! Whilst we remain dead last of Class, We also remain the least powerful of the class at 123bhp in a K11 Micra…. Just 1.2 Seconds of a Clio197 in the same class. The car remained mostly intact and now has a well deserved rest for a couple weeks.

I’m happy to have proved that our Supercharger kit can take an absolute kicking though! I think the best way to sell our products is to go out there and prove to everyone we have confidence in our products and I think actions speak louder than works.

But… It comes a time where we need to progress and I would like to be competitive in the class. I’m confident we can fit a 205/50 Tire (Currently a 165/60/14) up the front if we go up to a 15” wheel if we fettle the body work a little more improve front end grip. The rears would have to remain a 165 however…

Then, we plan to double the current power output to 250bhp in the next couple of months which should then hopefully see us finishing in a higher position in the class.

Unfortunately, we are not attending Round 5 of Time Attack at Anglesey, But we are making full effort to attend round 6 at Donnington Park on August 30th!

Thanks To the Team for Spannering, Transport, Cooking, Refreshments etc.

Thanks for Reading!