Fossa Ford Anglia is going to KZN! Excited, that we are, it will however only be two of us as the Roach will be tending to our four legged children and keep an eye on the teams home ….
A few right things at the right time and planning and preparations start. Fossa ready. The to do list, easy prep meals for The Roach, four legged kids meals pre prepped and get the mindset right for the dark journey down.
With our last south coast visit December 2009, and last visit from some south coast family in December 2014, it may be time ….
The plan is to leave after work on the evening of the 3rd of August to arrive very early the Friday morning, catch a sleep, do the documentation, scrutineering and one, maybe two practice sessions to get a feel for the track. Followed by a peaceful afternoon and evening. Saturday qualify and our two races. Dezzi Raceway looks like a challenging drivers track. Best I can do for now is utilize in-car footage of previous events and study the track and their racing lines ..
Image from http://www.dezzi.co.za/dezzi-raceway/
Tea-m Manager, Annalie will do triple duty trackside, assistant mechanic, photographer and chief supporter ….. with some excited family living in the Port Shepstone area she may have some help …
Firstly, our latest event. Past Friday 16 June we attended the Extreme Festival at Zwartkops Raceway. For this event we are to run with the Under Two Liters. Leading up to the day I get an itch, scratch, scratch, that infection that makes you fit the side draft DCOE40 Webers with a different configuration …. A crazy move, maybe. Fossa is prepped with the last in a series of three TOTAL oils being tested, this time, TOTAL QUARTZ RACING 9000 10w 60.
Team manager Annalie and me take leave and have Fossa trackside 15 June. It is the first time Fossa is towed using something other than our loyal Ford Cortina. We test the company vehicle, a Toyota Hilux and immediately face flack on arrival ….. Do the documentation, scrutineering and a practice event is about to happen. The other cars are already heading down when I in record time get prepared and follow. The side draughts really chatter wildly and give us a 01:27.316. A legendary BCET from Aces Cafe and we head home.
A cold early morning
16 June 2017, Trackside 05h45, Get everything ready and start the day with a BCET. Qualifying have us on track at 08h50 and on a very cold track Fossa gives us a 01:29.594.
Race one starts at 11h30. For us it is a bit of a lonesome affair. Just can’t seem to find that sweet spot. The Thursday lap time in my mind and knowing that is not the limit … On what would have been my second last lap the Under Two liters come past and our race end with a best lap time of 01:28.134.
The class C train
Race two sometime after 14h30. A total opposite of race one. Still getting the feel for the sidedrafts, Chad Ten Doeschate (Nash Metropolitan) and Mark Van Rooyen (Sunbeam Alpine) are ahead challenging each other for class C honors. I find Fossa delivering the best shifting early, probably due to the 28mm choke tubes.
The class C train continues
I manage to catch up and follow the action close up. It is then that it crosses my mind, did I or didn’t I start the recording on the GoPro, oh well, I press the button and hope for the best, then it is back to the action. Every now and then it looks like a stream of liquid smoke coming from the Sunbeam as his tyres touch bodywork in the corners. Both cars hop and bounce around making it difficult to plan a move. Mark manages to pass Chad and for a while they run side by side. Chad manages to brake free on corner three as if Mark missed a gear and we pass Mark. In the meantime the Under Two Liter cars are closing in.
Class C mixed with a variety of Under Two Liters ..
At corner five I consider passing Chad on the inside but that Nash boggels my mind and I let that slide, round corner six, seven and just before eight the leaders of the Under Two Liters start meshing through the contest of our class C group and lapped our race end a lap premature. More lessons learned.
Race two times,
Fossa has been checked and excluding a repair needed to her right rear shock mount, she is ready for her next run. Her TOTAL QUARTZ RACING 9000 10w 60 is exceptionally clean. Will wait for the test results, but I think this is the one I want to use, challenge though, it does not seem to be that available.
***** FIVE YEARS *****
2012, 19 May, Fossa’s first appearance at a race track, 15 July, Fossa’s first track day, 21 July, Fossa’s first race ….
Five years of every emotion imaginable.
Some stats: In the five years,
Events: Fossa attended events at race tracks 44 times. 26 Race days, 15 track days, 1 Lotus register day, 1 marshal’s training day and 1 raceday only to provide a suicide ride. Of these 34 events was at Zwartkops Raceway, 7 at Kyalami, 2 at Midvaal and 1 at Redstar raceway.
Engines: Five engine blocks have done duty of which one was completely destroyed by pushing a conrod through, one an experimental and one a secondhand one race attempt. Two cylinder heads have been destroyed by valves breaking.
Carburettors: Fossa started her track career with a 36DCD for her first nine events. That was followed by twenty five events with a 38 DGAS and then two events with 40 DCOE’s. Seven recent events was completed with a newly acquired 36DCD. And then our last event back to 40 DCOE’s.
Gearbox: Fossa is still on her first original gearbox.
Differential: Fossa started of with a 3.777:1 and that completed 19 events. Her last twenty four events employed a 4.444:1 ratio with a Quaife LSD.
Tires: Fossa have done seven events on road tires which still have about fifty percent life, 32 events on her first set of Yokohama semi slicks, four events on a set of Dunlop semi’s and currently going on to event seventeen on her second set of Yokohama’s with the next set of Yoki’s waiting.
Trophies: In her 44 events to date Fossa have collected 19 trophies of which all are treasured. The biggest trophy is still to take Fossa home in one piece!
Lap times: With so few events at other tracks Zwartkops Raceway serves as our datum point for results.
Next event, we will have to wait and see as we join the Historic Tour for the remainder of the year.
21 April I make a brief visit to Kyalami to complete documentation and collect our tickets. The sounds of the other practicing make me realise I should also be there ….
22 April, 06h00 we arrive track side leaving tickets for visitors at the main gate, find a spot and dismount Fossa. Our lack of successful visits to this legendary track wears on my mind really not looking forward to another engine rebuild. We are once again in the secondary pit area, this time with space to spare.
Fossa is taken for scrutineering passing as expected. Being billed as a two day event we are happy that qualifying is at 9:35 on Saturday. With our previous visit cut short by a valve through the piston after only a few minutes, and a best time of 2:55.793, this is still new to me. The track surface offers a lot of, maybe too much traction combined with Fossa’s Yoko’s. Well, with five timed laps we run an improved 2:41.655.
Race one: 10:50. For this was a rather quiet race running alone, using the opportunity as a reconnaissance and practise session. The only other car that we could have played with the Sunbeam Alpine of Mark Van Rooyen slowly disappearing into the horizon. We ran a best lap of 2:41.536. We are lapped by twenty one competitors of which eight pass us twice!
Fossa lifting her left front
Race two: With the sun starting to fade at 16:40 we head out for race two. Heading over the startline, I make sure to just cross behind the nose of Mark’s Sunbeam and then it is an all holds barred drag down the strip, corner one, we find ourselves in front of the red trailer. From there on, it is a constant competition for that position. On occasion the Sunbeam Alpine pull in next to me with it’s awesome exhaust note. Fossa is really pushed to new limits with Mark in pursuit. In the corners the Sunbeam close the gap, on the straights Fossa opens a small gap. On the main straight I find my left hand moving for another gear, realising, there are no more. What it feels like to top out an Anglia on historic parts, 😉 . We run a best lap of 2:36.866. We are lapped by seven competitors once. The hardest I have worked behind a steering wheel in a while!
Our total race time, 18:44.4, Mark, 18:45.6 ….
Fossa Ford Anglia and her red trailer, Mark Van Rooyen
For now, Fossa Ford Anglia is the fastest Ford Anglia on the new Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit.
The spectator volume really surprised and was most welcome. It was heartwarming to see the embankments filled with visitors! If motor racing can draw these numbers there is increased possibility of sponsors returning to our favourite sport.
Received some sad news today with the passing of Sean Allen, a brother in historic racing. Rest in peace.
Our next race outing will be at the Extreme Festival 17 June 2017. Considering some changes to Fossa, time will tell. Cheers.