Zwartkops Raceway, 07/14/2018, Historic Tour Round 2

Only days after our last race at Redstar Raceway it appears it was our absolute last race at the track. Pity, I have my own thoughts which will remain exactly that. How many close by MSA approved tracks remain. Zwartkops Raceway, our awesome home track. Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit, a very challenging track, never hosting a Grand Prix since it’s upgrade, very expensive to rent. The only other track in easy reach, Midvaal Raceway, raced the track twice and racing stopped due to surface condition …..

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It’s three days before the planned day to take Fossa Ford Anglia to Zwartkops Raceway for our next race. Everything ready excluding her wash, or that’s what I thought …. Not wanting to leave anything to the last day, I start the washing process just to discover brown spots all over her body like some sort of rash!

I can not take her racing looking like she has chicken pox. What caused it I can only think. I grab what I have available and start looking at solutions. It looks like rust and have penetrated the paint. On hand I have some rather expensive cleaning and polishing products. Even this seems to be no quick solution. I start experimenting with my spray paint finishing products. Sand her down with 1500, 2000, 3000 and 4000 grit. Then some cutting polish and only then the expensive products in “sequence”. The plan was to take Fossa track side on Friday, but I only manage to complete her late on the day. Attempting to start her, the 38DGAS has decided to flood her, no time and power left for a carburettor rebuild, we fit the 36DCD.

Saturday morning we head out to the track. On arrival we find insufficient space allocated for the Pre66 Little Giants. I get permission to park behind some of the Zwartkops Raceway machines. 07:00, We head out to qualify with the shiniest car at the venue. Our first race with the 36DCD in a while and the power goes down so smoothly we achieve a 01:28.06.

Race one, At about 10:00 we head out. We are followed by the Alfa of Jaco Taylor snr. Soon Jaco’s Alfa proves too much for Fossa and we are racing solo. Fossa’s brake pedal feels very hard without her normal braking making the racing very exciting using the engine and gearbox to assist in the slowing. 01:27.63

Fossa Ford Anglia, the shiniest car on track

Fossa Ford Anglia, the shiniest car on track using all available space

Race two, somewhere after 14:20. This is going to to be another interesting event. It has been decided to throw all the Pre66 events together. Pre66 Legends, the U2’s and the Little giants. The race is extended with an extra lap as it is a known fact we will be lapped by the big dogs. And then there are a few non finishers of the first race starting behind us. The lights change and the rolling thunder V8’s lead us off. I soon find myself having solo fun. All until firstly the mighty V8’s pass followed shortly by the faster of the U2’s. Running alone gives opportunities to test limits and I have Fossa screaming tires for longer. The smooth power transition offered by the 36DCD and the lack of our normal braking power, all things to get used to. 01:27.22.

Annalie have ordered a new billet 244 camshaft which we should have fitted and ready by our next race 9 June at Zwartkops Raceway. Would love to do a test  track day …

Cheers

Repairs done, Redstar Raceway, 10 March 2018

Repairs and improvements done to Fossa Ford Anglia’s wiring and Redstar Raceway, 10 March is a go. It is the first round of the Historic Tour for the year. The team arrive trackside shortly after six. Final checks and prep followed by a cup of coffee.

08H10, Qualifying. To us a “new” track as we will be racing anti-clockwise. We only manage a 2:50.?.

We have visitors again. Annalie’s sister and brother pops in. Drivers briefing and the mental preparation for race one begins.

10:45, Race one. Pre ‘66 Legends, pre ‘66 Sports & GT, pre’90 Sports GT all in one race. Only sixteen entries received for the Pre66 and Little Giants of which one withdrawal by our previous challenger, Mark Van Rooyen and Clive Winterstein have a broken clutch cable. The pre ’90 Sports & GT cars entered eight wicked Porsche 911’s. We pull away with the Kelly/ Botha MG ahead of us. Fossa Ford Anglia does not feel on song, but initially manage to catch the MG just to be caught soon after and the MG disappearing in the distance and I have no answer for their sudden speed. Last year at the same venue I knew it was imminent. It becomes rather lonesome race and I start experimenting turns. I manage to change the bouncing in some corners to a slide of the rear. Redstar raceway have us running in third gear most of the time and I do not have the gear for corner eight, two being to low and three like a standing start. The engine running 5500 to 7000rpm’s. The Porsche’s catch up and overtake, followed by the Shelby Mustang, Chev Nova and Chev Bel Air. Somehow I lose track of laps done and if the leaders passed me once or twice, crossing the start finish line I catch a glimpse of the chequered flag and “assume” my race is done. I miss one lap! Best lap time, 2:50.? again. We disable one of the fuel pumps as I have the suspicion we are flooding the sidedrafts.

14:15, Race two. We are minus the Kelly/ Botha MG as they have fried their engine in another race. It is another lonely race. I start to get a feel for the track in this direction and we net a 2:43.? cutting seven seconds. Still not where I’d like to be but an improvement.

A well prepared event with the venue being it’s normal clean self.

We really need greater support in the pre66 classes so that we can fill a grid. Adding the Pre90 Sports & GT cars have a incredible speed differential. Should two or more Little Giants cars be in a race with each other and they are are blue flagged it will interfere in what could be spectacular racing.

Our next race should everything go to plan, 7 April, Historic Tour round two at Zwartkops Raceway. Cheers.

2018, Passion for Speed, Zwartkops Raceway

Annalie our tea-m manager and me have taken leave for Thursday through to Monday. Thursday after dropping the “Roach” off at work we head to Zwartkops Raceway, Fossa Ford Anglia in tow ….

On arrival we do the necessary documentation and scrutineering. A BECT from the Chicane Lounge and with the Kyalami problem sorted, I reinstall the side drafts …. Target off the day achieved, we head home.

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Friday morning, repeat, drop the “Roach” off, head to the track. Check all the vitals, head out on track, three laps in “Kyalami” challenge returns. Power loss and I coast Fossa Fossa into the pits. Not knowing the cause much chance to do anything I tamper here and there, replacing perfect looking fuel filters ….. etc. Fossa starts first try.

Not hoping for too much, we head out to qualify. Two laps done, Fossa is car down again and I only just make it to the bottom of the pits. Fossa refuses to start and we are stranded downhill from our pit ….

Eventually we have Fossa back in her pit. Course of action, well we know we are running the carburettors dry. Head off to a nearby spares shop, buy a new battery, just in case, some rolls of cable and a length of fuel hose …. Head back to the track. I replace the cabling powering the fuel pumps and ignition system. Head home ….

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Saturday morning. We are scheduled for the first race. Arrive trackside at 05h00, first task, replace the fuel line. Now we can only trust it will solve the challenge.

Race one: A few competitors decide not to go out as it is raining. This delays our start as well. We get the green flag and head out. Having run Zwartkops in the extreme wet with success before, for some or other reason I do not feel that brave. Maybe it was a good choice as there were a few spills out front with us having to take evasive action as our route was suddenly altered by a car parked across the track. During the race we are overtaken by a light blue Volvo (driven by an Irish gent?) under double waved yellows. Maybe they have different rules. A question that has to be asked is just how is it that a Mk2 Escort is allowed on track with the Pre66 Little Giants? What is going to be next? In my view it has damaged the image of the series.

At least Fossa Ford Anglia completes the race with no fueling problems.

Race two: We head out on a much drier track. Improved lap times indicates a trust in the traction offered to the rubber binding us to the track. I am surprised as I expected quite a few cars to pass and a challenge from the Kelly/ Botha MG. Highest priority, Fossa finishes the second race problem free. Of the ten competitors in class we manage a fourth overall for the day.

The immediate future. The next race is scheduled for Redstar Raceway on the 11th of March. A different challenge though, attempting to start Fossa two weeks ago had her wiring in her engine bay catch on fire. A quick fix is probably possible, but a total rewire is on the cards in the future …… ‘Till next time, cheers