Firstly, thanks to James Forbes and the Lotus guys for allowing us the opportunity to participate in your training day. It gave us a chance to settle our new clutch, test our suspension configuration and gain yet another challenge!
Other than us arriving at Zwartkops Raceway beating the sun partly due to a misty, cloudy morning, following registration, we attend the classroom session. A very interesting introduction to ultimately car control and racing led by James. A reminder of the do’s and dont’s.
We complete two stints. The new clutch is just “peachy”. In the first our Anglia proves to be quite a handful with her altered suspension setup. I have grown so used to her extreme leaning that the “improved” Fossa delivers new challenges as driving a different car. A chat with Lee Thompson advises to increase spring pressure and for now to retain our suspension, limiting front suspension travel.
In our second stint I find myself in better control and even run a 1:28.52 without really trying. We also ran the first stint with the vacuum advance working and the second without – Can not really say that there was a difference, will redo at our next event.
On entering the pits, Fossa flatly refuses to idle. Run through the “usual” culprits and beyond. We verify distributor tightness, timing position, valve clearances, check compression ……. We get a can of deodorant and as I want to spray close to the inlet manifold I see it. The gasket between the manifold and the adapter plate sticking out the side and a piece partially blocking the one throat. How this happened, can not say.
On disassembly we find pieces of the gasket completely missing. I can recall seeing a piece of comparable material lying on the manifold quite a while back. Just how long has the piece been missing and how will the repairs affect Fossa? All questions to be answered at Kyalami, 27 July!