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Author Topic: WINTER RUNOFFS - Sebring Double National
Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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The Winter Runoffs kicked off yesterday with the first of two days of testing. Not many cars out, but today the rigs are rolling in en-masse. Unfortunatley today will not be a good barometer of form as the track is wet and its pretty foggy out there. (6am)

The field is really deep, and the two National Races should be a good indication of the season ahead - stay tuned to this station for more updates.

Word on the street is that the sniffer dogs are out in force, well trained and itching to take down their prey.

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Blake Clements Verified Driver Series Champ
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Someone get down there and beat my lap [Smile]

--------------------
Blake Clements

PhillipsRacePrep/SP Induction Systems/East Street Racing/MiataCage.com/Carbotech/WBR Graphics

www.blakeclements.com

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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Sorry that you were not able to make it Blake. With you and a few others it would look like the entire Runoffs field!

Testing on Thursday was all over the place. The rain and lightning kept the sessions from starting on time, but we still ended up with three sessions. Very slick track for the first session, lots of sideways action, not many came out to play. I figured out an entirely novel way to do the 15/16 combo - will post video next week

After lunch it had dried up but the track was green and a strong headwind conspired to keep the times slow. I believe a few of us were in the 2:39's, but nothing faster than that.

Friday's first qualifying session (for Saturdays race) was run in perfect conditions, but the track was still a bit green. Temps in the 50's.

01. Steyn 2.36.9
02. Charbonneau 2.37.1
03. Bolanos 2:37.3
04. Tucker 2:37.3
05. Voytek 2:38.1
06. Van Vurst 2:38.5
07. Levrone 2:38.6
08. Drago 2:38.7
09. Berry 2:38.7
10. Moen 2:38.7


Conditions had deteriorated for the 2nd qualifying session (for Sundays race). Temps were in the high 60's and there was a strong headwing affecting the back straight as well as the straight leading to the hairpin (T7). Top speeds on these sections were off 4-5mph.

01. Drago 2:38.5
02. Charbonneau 2:38.5
03. Labounty 2:38.8
04. Bolanos 2:38.8
05. Steyn 2:39.1
06. Anderson 2:39.2
07. ???? 2:39.3
08. Van Vurst 2.39.5
09. Sandlin 2:39.7
10. Berry 2:39.9

Should be a fun day tomorrow and on Sunday

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Cajun Miata Man Verified Driver
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Good luck Danny, the East Street Crew and all the other Runoff friends. I tossed the idea around of coming over to join the fun but was just too busy at work after the holidays.

Everyone have a safe race. This is one for braggin' rights!

--------------------
James York


sponsored by:
Stan's Auto Center, Lafayette LA
powered by:
East Street Racing, Memphis TN
set up guru:
Gilfus Racing, Austin TX

Tom Sager Made Donation to Website
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quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
Sorry that you were not able to make it Blake. With you and a few others it would look like the entire Runoffs field!

Testing on Thursday was all over the place. The rain and lightning kept the sessions from starting on time, but we still ended up with three sessions. Very slick track for the first session, lots of sideways action, not many came out to play. I figured out an entirely novel way to do the 15/16 combo - will post video next week

After lunch it had dried up but the track was green and a strong headwind conspired to keep the times slow. I believe a few of us were in the 2:39's, but nothing faster than that.

Friday's first qualifying session (for Saturdays race) was run in perfect conditions, but the track was still a bit green. Temps in the 50's.

01. Steyn 2.36.9
02. Charbonneau 2.37.1
03. Bolanos 2:37.3
04. Tucker 2:37.3
05. Voytek 2:38.1
06. Van Vurst 2:38.5
07. Levrone 2:38.6
08. Drago 2:38.7
09. Berry 2:38.7
10. Moen 2:38.7


Conditions had deteriorated for the 2nd qualifying session (for Sundays race). Temps were in the high 60's and there was a strong headwing affecting the back straight as well as the straight leading to the hairpin (T7). Top speeds on these sections were off 4-5mph.

01. Drago 2:38.5
02. Charbonneau 2:38.5
03. Labounty 2:38.8
04. Bolanos 2:38.8
05. Steyn 2:39.1
06. Anderson 2:39.2
07. ???? 2:39.3
08. Van Vurst 2.39.5
09. Sandlin 2:39.7
10. Berry 2:39.9

Should be a fun day tomorrow and on Sunday

Thanks for the update. Gotta send a little love to my division mate. Go get 'em Voytek!

Jamie Tucker Series Champ

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Prediction for todays second saturday qualifier!! New poll will be a low 36 with Tucker and Von C. [Smile] Two bad I cannot race on Sunday as it is a great field.

--------------------
2010 ARRC Champion
2010 CFR Champion
2010 instigator of the year
2010/2011 Andrew Von C Wingman

Blake Clements Verified Driver Series Champ
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Thanks for letting someone else win on Sunday Jamie. You are a pal [Smile]

--------------------
Blake Clements

PhillipsRacePrep/SP Induction Systems/East Street Racing/MiataCage.com/Carbotech/WBR Graphics

www.blakeclements.com

Vick Verified Driver
Do they sell spec training wheels?

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Are these results online anywhere? Some of the North East crowd went down and I'd like to check on them.

I searched mylaps for sebring and didn't come up with anything.

--------------------
http://www.volko.com

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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Only Charbonneau and Steyn cracked the 2.36's today in qualifying. Andrew nabbed the pole by 0.1 secs with a brilliant 2.36.84. Most were slightly slower, so it was impressive to see Andrew lower his Friday's time.

Race was interesting. Andrew and myself, along with Alex Bolanos got a small break going. Alex fell off (missed shift I suspect), and we got away, only to run into a FCY aafter 4 laps.

Three laps were lost to the FCY

On teh restart Andrew rolled on early, only to have come out of it or pass the pace car. Drago and Labounty, many many car length back had the flyer timed perfectly and flew past us.

Within a lap Andrew and I had eeked out a lead, and pulled away from the field. A strong 20mph headwind played bavoc on the backstraight. From 5 car lengths back you could close and get a massive passing run, only to come to a complete stop in the wind. This translated into Andrew and I going side by side throught T17 on the last two laps.

Andrew held the inside line and I ended up a car length short. One of the most enjoyable races I have had in a long time. Tucker raced intelligently to hold off the rest of the pack for 3rd spot.

Not too sure of the order thereafter, will post when I have it.

At tech they checked charging system and had us pull starters to check flywheels.

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Mitch Reading Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Great updates Danny, thank you. Way to wheel, good luck tomorrow.

--------------------
http://www.mitchum.ms

Mitch Reading Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Are you guys all happy that the Gorilla is over at Daytona playing with the pro boys ? [Big Grin]

--------------------
http://www.mitchum.ms

Jamie Tucker Series Champ

ARRC 2010 Champ

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quote:
Originally posted by Mitch Reading:
Are you guys all happy that the Gorilla is over at Daytona playing with the pro boys ? [Big Grin]

[Roll Eyes]

--------------------
2010 ARRC Champion
2010 CFR Champion
2010 instigator of the year
2010/2011 Andrew Von C Wingman

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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Priceless remark from our waiter in Sebring this evening........."I think everyone should spend some time in Jail. You're paying for it, you might as well use it!"

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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Qualifying for Sunday was run in perfect conditions, 55 degree temps with sun baking on the track.

I came in early after 3 laps with a great time of 2.36.2 in the bag, 0.6 under the lap record. Was thrilled. For about thirty seconds. Charbonneau rolled into impound with a 2.35.4 and Bolanos with a 2.35.5 - more than 1.3 seconds under the lap record. Are you kidding me!!!!

As I said conditions were perfect and everyone had their fastest times on the track. Buras was the first 1.6 and ran a 2:36.6 with help, but his engine was missing, and he was struggling with snap oversteer.

Grid for Sundays main event
1. Charbonneau
2. Bolanos
3. Steyn
4. Buras
5. Drago
6. Levrone

[ 01-09-2011, 06:44 PM: Message edited by: Danny Steyn ]

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Gatoratty Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Danny drove a nice race to take the win in Sundays race. Big wreck among the leaders going into turn one took out Bolanos and damaged Drago, Charbonneau and others.

--------------------
Paul McLester

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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I was lucky to walk away with the win on Sunday. Andrew and Alex were significantly faster in the Q4 session and would have been difficult to beat.

This time we started with the two T3 cars ahead of us, and once again this resulted in a big wreck. Next time we have to leave a gap – we thought they would fly away at the start and be gone by the time we got to Ti, but that was not to be.

Despite sprinting away from the SM filed, as we came into T1 they were so slow and cutting down to the apex that Chip and I who had a great start on the inside (me with help from Drago) and Nick Levrone on the outside, all had to check up and Drago just nicked my bumper turning him completely head on into the entire SM field of 60 cars!

Did not look pretty in the video. Total chaos reigned. Not sure of who hit who or how it all played out, but plenty of cars were involved. Chip held me off and led me, Nick Levrone, Craig Berry and Selin Rollan into T3. Then there was a massive gap behind us.

Chip had switched to his brothers ‘99 for the Sunday race. I tried pushing Chip for a few laps to break the draft from Nick Craig and Selin behind, but despite great power, the handling was off and he couldn’t get to power on the exit of the turns, so they were soon all over us. I overdrove T10, and fell back to 4th, but made my way back to second behind Selin, when Chip went off in T5. That put Selin in front. Nick was all over my bumper, with Craig on top of him.

Selin, who is still in school, led his first lap in his first race in his first time at Sebring in one of the deepest national fields you can find. Pretty amazing – from what I saw he was sensible, calm and decisive, so the kid obviously has some serious talent, and will be interesting to watch.

I knew I had to make a break, got a good exit out of T1 and made the pass going into T3, and then something let go in Selin’s car (possibly diff),and he disappeared in my mirror. From then on I ran a string of 2:38.1’s to pull out a 6 second lead as Chip, Nick and Craig were having a ding-dong battle behind me.

I took the win, Chip got 2nd, Craig Berry got 3rd, and Nick Levrone 4th. Needless to say, Craig was thrilled with this result as was Nick Levrone. Neither of them have much time on the track and both were strong contenders

I never saw the final results sheet, but I heard that Andrew ran a 2:36.7 for a new lap record!!! I would love to see that lap. It was 70 degrees outside, midday, and the track was pretty greasy. To say the track was less than its best is a total understatement. That crazy man sure can drive. Bolanos was taken out in the T1 mêlée and didn’t finish. As I said, it they had been there it would have been very different.

I want to thank OPM for all their help. Tom, Tim, and Glen adjusted the car all weekend, making small changes every session. Car was so sweet in the last race. Thanks guys. A big thanks to Mike Rossini for the great engine he builds and for the constant support and encouragement he gives me. And of course to Traqmate – my best friend at the track.

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

fishguyaz
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do i understand correctly that you had 60 SM cars, but did not have a dedicated run group with that car count?

--------------------
Josh Pitt
AZ Region

George Munson Verified Driver
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Congrats, Danny!

Sorry to hear of the others. I thought after Saturdays driver meeting the start was set for both days. I guess after all I'm glad I had to work Sunday. Despite some car issues I enjoyed Saturday and look forward to my next race. [thumbsup]

S. L. R.
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Thanks DANNY.

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by fishguyaz:
do i understand correctly that you had 60 SM cars, but did not have a dedicated run group with that car count?

Josh - yup - with Double Nationals, even on a 3 day race weekend, there is almost always going to be some grouping going on. I do REALLY wish we would get out own run group, or have completely seperate starts, with time before the two groups catch each other.

We really thought they would be gone by the time they hit T1, but we were wrong. In retrospect if we had just put a gap between us and them we would have all been fine. Hindsight is 20:20!

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by S. L. R.:
Thanks DANNY.

You're welcome Selin (I guess SLR is you.) Sorry about your car, we would have had a good race to the end.

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by Blake Clements:
Someone get down there and beat my lap [Smile]

Blake - I am sure you read that both Andew and Alex did beat your lap, in official qualifying too! And then Andrew ran a new lap record of 2.36.7 in the heat!

Gonna have to come back soon and defend your honor!

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Jamie Tucker Series Champ

ARRC 2010 Champ

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Glad I had to work on Sunday as well. Why did the T3 cars not start at the rear as they did on Saturday. We all made it through the start (two starts) on Saturday with very little trouble. We raced very hard and only had a few slight rubs here and there (thanks big D). Once again we see that you cannot mix other cars with us. Two of the T3 cars were only slightly faster then the Miatas and that was just because of straight line speed; they park in the corners. I was not there on Sunday so I can't say what happened but having raced with everyone up front many times I believe that the odd cars out are what led to the wreck. Also I think it is becoming a real safety issue. It is bad enough to get hit by a Miata but a full size mustang?? Come on CFR get your crap together!!! The stewards have done little in the way of jumped starts or contact in a long time. How in the hell do you think we keep getting 5 wide 6 deep into turn 1.. Stop the jumped starts by black flagging those drivers and get this under control.....

--------------------
2010 ARRC Champion
2010 CFR Champion
2010 instigator of the year
2010/2011 Andrew Von C Wingman

S. L. R.
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quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
quote:
Originally posted by S. L. R.:
Thanks DANNY.

You're welcome Selin (I guess SLR is you.) Sorry about your car, we would have had a good race to the end.
No, i am the father, he is in school right now; he will probably be on later tonight.

Cajun Miata Man Verified Driver
Overdog Driver

Region: Houston; SWDIV
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quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
quote:
Originally posted by fishguyaz:
do i understand correctly that you had 60 SM cars, but did not have a dedicated run group with that car count?

Josh - yup - with Double Nationals, even on a 3 day race weekend, there is almost always going to be some grouping going on. I do REALLY wish we would get out own run group, or have completely seperate starts, with time before the two groups catch each other.

We really thought they would be gone by the time they hit T1, but we were wrong. In retrospect if we had just put a gap between us and them we would have all been fine. Hindsight is 20:20!

Danny,

Come race with us over in SOWDIV sometime. I guess I am spoiled, but SM (and SRF) has always had its own run group for as long as I can remember.

I think everyone prefers it that way. Both SM and others.

PS: Congrats on the WIN!

--------------------
James York


sponsored by:
Stan's Auto Center, Lafayette LA
powered by:
East Street Racing, Memphis TN
set up guru:
Gilfus Racing, Austin TX

David Dewhurst
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quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
Word on the street is that the sniffer dogs are out in force, well trained and itching to take down their prey.

Update?

Was Buras in a 1.6 & if so was he the best 1.6?

--------------------
Have Fun [Wink]

David Dewhurst
CenDiv
Milwaukee Region
Spec Miata #14

KachMiata
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Yes, Buras was in a 1.6. I was battling with him for most of Sunday's race. His drivers side fender was pretty banged up, though. I believe he was the best 1.6 out there.

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by David Dewhurst:
quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
Word on the street is that the sniffer dogs are out in force, well trained and itching to take down their prey.

Update?

Was Buras in a 1.6 & if so was he the best 1.6?

Regards the HOT FUEL issue. Pretty thrilled to report that no-one that I spoke to smelled any fuel anywhere anytime. I suspect everyone had a stash somewhere just in case!!!!

I know Capt John (SFL SCCA CS) came to me to say they were ready to test as many cars as we wanted. I think he was pleased not to have to go through the process.

And yes - Todd raced in his 1.6. He was struggling with an engine miss at lower rpm, but when it was pulling it was strong. He also had an issue with setup as he was experiencing snap oversteer, and I am not sure if he figured it out by the race. I know he was caught up in the melee and suffered quite a bit of body damage and I think the toe was knocked out.

He was the fastest of the 1.6 brigade, but the front end of the field was predominantly 99's. Chip was the fastest of the 1.8 brigade on Saturday.

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

Danny Steyn Verified Driver
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If you want to see just how fast Andrew was on Sunday, here are the top 10 and their best lap times

1 Danny Steyn 2:38.079
2 Henry Vanvurst 2:38.612
3 Craig Berry 2:38.497
4 Nick Leverone 2:38.580
5 Jim Drago 2:37.940
6 Andrew Von Charbonneau 2:36.750
7 Voytek Burdzy 2:38.125
8 Bruce Andersen II 2:38.341
9 Todd Buras 2:38.893
10 John Kachadurian 2:38.273

Thats some driving!

--------------------
Danny
http://www.dannysteyn.com
http://www.adeptstudios.com
OPM Autosports | Traqmate | Rossini Racing Engines
2010 June Sprints Champ, 2010 ARRC SMX Champ
2009 SARRC Champ, 2009 SEDiv ECR Champ, 2009 FES Champ
2008 SEDiv ECR Champ

JIM DANIELS Verified Driver Made Donation to Website Series Champ
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Guys, new posts will shut down at the end of the month, few weeks. Please start thinking about the new site.

Sorry I missed it, again, Sebring. Congrats!

I need a SE moderator, if interested let me know.

Couple of links.....

SpecMiata Site

Sebring Smak

--------------------
Jim Daniels

MAZDARACERS.COM

Ron Alan Made Donation to Website
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quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
If you want to see just how fast Andrew was on Sunday, here are the top 10 and their best lap times

1 Danny Steyn 2:38.079
2 Henry Vanvurst 2:38.612
3 Craig Berry 2:38.497
4 Nick Leverone 2:38.580
5 Jim Drago 2:37.940
6 Andrew Von Charbonneau 2:36.750
7 Voytek Burdzy 2:38.125
8 Bruce Andersen II 2:38.341
9 Todd Buras 2:38.893
10 John Kachadurian 2:38.273

Thats some driving!

Danny,

Video????? Hoping you or someone will post something up! Maybe as Jim requested on the other site...please [Big Grin]


Thanks guys!!

--------------------
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quote:
Originally posted by Ron Alan:
quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
If you want to see just how fast Andrew was on Sunday, here are the top 10 and their best lap times

1 Danny Steyn 2:38.079
2 Henry Vanvurst 2:38.612
3 Craig Berry 2:38.497
4 Nick Leverone 2:38.580
5 Jim Drago 2:37.940
6 Andrew Von Charbonneau 2:36.750
7 Voytek Burdzy 2:38.125
8 Bruce Andersen II 2:38.341
9 Todd Buras 2:38.893
10 John Kachadurian 2:38.273

Thats some driving!

Danny,

Video????? Hoping you or someone will post something up! Maybe as Jim requested on the other site...please [Big Grin]


Thanks guys!!

Im not sure how much video is going to be posted from the front as there were a few very well known drivers who jumped the start and in my opinion were at least partially responsible for taking out the two fastest cars. It is pretty sad to see that those who I feel are some of the best Miata drivers in the SE do what they did. Those with the videos are still pissed so they are not likely to start posting anytime soon. I will say this, if you started behind the front row and you were in front or next to Von C or Alex B then you were the problem. Danny, Drago please post your videos so you can show the start; it might just help clear the air. I am working on getting the two other videos that I saw and will post them. Selin Rollan if you have a video you need to post it as well as you started way back and were at the front by turn 1 as well and made contact with the fastest cars in the SE.

--------------------
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Jamie
I have no problem posting my video - will do it this week.

--------------------
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quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
quote:
Originally posted by Blake Clements:
Someone get down there and beat my lap [Smile]

Blake - I am sure you read that both Andew and Alex did beat your lap, in official qualifying too! And then Andrew ran a new lap record of 2.36.7 in the heat!

Gonna have to come back soon and defend your honor!

I sure did, that is hauling the mail!

You guys can also come to Texas, you know? [Wink]

--------------------
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Jamie
I did not have any video, actually put camera in the car on the grid and left memory stick in Memphis, so I handed camera back to Wheeler with no memory stick.
There was about 20 different things wrong at that start. You weren't there, but on Sunday there was a meeting that basically said that we were to " let the two T3 cars go" and then our front row was going to start. IMO, that was the biggest issue. Had we started like we did on Saturday, there would have been no issue.

First of all, we inconvenienced 60 plus cars so the T3 350z could run in two classes. Still not sure why we didn't ask for a true split start? There were only three T3 cars and almost 60 SM's. That was ALL OF OUR FAULTS, we should have asked for a split start, not whatever it was that we did.

Secondly, While I hate it for Alex and Andrew, nor do I think it was their responsibility to know what the appropriate distance was to "let the T3 cars go" In hindsight 40-50 yards or whatever it ended up was not a good distance at all. If they were few hundred yards ahead, this likely would not have happened either. What happened was the T3 cars were close enough, that when they got the green, no one paid attention to Andrew and Alex's pace any longer. Were we wrong? probably so. Let He Who Is Without Sin Cast The First Stone... [Big Grin] NONE involved are innocent of never jumping or anticipating a green, including you, Andrew and Alex. Everyone is taking what they can. Personally, I heard engines floored and saw people moving and passing before I ever hit the gas, so do you wait for Alex and Andrew? Would you?

I saw Alex's video, It looks like I was trying to pass Steyn, I wasn't. My intention was we would go through turn one 2 or 3 wide, like every other competitive SM start I have been in for a long time. Seldom a single file procession going through turn one. Looking at Alex's video, It "appeared to me" that the T3 S2000 started to turn in and caught Danny's eye, he naturally altered his line a little, I didn't see it as it all took place in .1 or .2 seconds. I was no where near along side Danny at this point, but obviously close enough that we touched. Whether I hit him or he hit me who really knows, nor does it really matter at this point other than to pacify egoes. I am not assigning blame, will take the blame if that is popular opinion of the crowd. I really don't care at this point as the damage is done. More upset that many cars were bent and many races ruined including my own. I certainly don't believe Danny,Andrew,Alex or anyone else believes anyone wanted this to happen.

My opinion was that several very competitive drivers and cars tried to make the best start possible for themselves, many factors and multiple lines and angles at 80-90 mph came together in less than half a second and the result was a mess. Alex came out the worst, for whatever part I played I apologize. My race, Alex's,Andrews and many others were ruined. I can say that in three years of racing, I had four instances of contact, two were this weekend, two last year where I was hit by two different people who lost control of their cars, I made all of 2009, my best year in racing without any contact.

[ 01-12-2011, 12:18 PM: Message edited by: Drago ]

--------------------
Jim Drago
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I'm glad you only counted three years Jimmy. [Big Grin]

If the green ain't out, the throttle should not be down (unless you are holding the brake while WOT to adjust speed like I do in all my perceived jumped starts).

--------------------
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quote:
Originally posted by JIM DANIELS:
I'm glad you only counted three years Jimmy. [Big Grin]


Aren't you supposed to be over there at the new site? [Wink]

--------------------
Jim Drago
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quote:
Originally posted by JIM DANIELS:
I'm glad you only counted three years Jimmy. [Big Grin]

If the green ain't out, the throttle should not be down (unless you are holding the brake while WOT to adjust speed like I do in all my perceived jumped starts).

Yep, and this is what Charb and myself were doing as we got categorically run over on the way to the start finish line. Swamped at work, will post vids and thoughts soon.

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Really, how hard is it to get a second pace car for a proper split start, and why are so many CSs loath to do so?

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Jim

thanks for your detailed post on the start. I was busy putting mine together while watching the video. I wanted to wait till I posted the video but cannot edit here as I dont have the software at on this PC that handles the AVCHD files - will do that tonight, but since you posted I thought I would add my [twocents]

Sundays Race 2 Start

I know Andrew and Alex are pretty PO'd about the start and I suspect that they are especially PO'd about the guys behind, but I want to state here, in a public forum, that as much as I hate saying this as I have nothing but respect and fondness for Andrew, but part of the blame lies with Andrew. And part of the blame rests with others, as I am sure you will all delight in attacking, because none of you have done this yourselves. [nope]

I spoke to Andrew on Monday and congratulated him on the lap record (so off the charts, so damn amazing, that I just wish I could see that lap) and I could tell he was pissed so after teh call I went and studied the video again (for the 20th time)

IMHO there are two issues that are apparent from my video and I have NOT had the benefit of seeing any other videos, and as we saw from the 2010 Runoffs videos, different cameras provide very different perspectives, so please note that my commentary relates to what I can see in my video only (and in the rear view mirror). Forgive me Jamie if I do not have the perspective that you are seeing in the videos you have seen. You might be drawing different conclusions

My decision to post the video will also I suspect be viewed by some as a personal move, but I am doing this, not to clear my name (or dig a grave for myself depending on how you view my start), or to assign blame to anyone.

It is purely with the intent that we can all learn from this and hopefully stop tearing up so many cars.

The two issues I see are
1. Not any gap between the SM pack and the T3 cars parking it in T1.
2. Drivers jumping out of line before the green flag goes

At the drivers meeting after Sundays qualifying, they reversed the order of the grid, putting the two T3 cars ahead of us. They also asked us to leave a gap behind them so that we wouldn’t be on them as we got to T1.

ISSUE 1
On the warm up lap Andrew initially does leave a small gap, way less than what I would have done but we all now have the benefit of hindsight.

Then as we enter the start straight he runs up behind the T3 cars. Yes the starter is slow to show the green, and Andrew had no way of knowing this, but what that did was get the entire pack rolling at a faster speed. Had he held the gap and held the pace the cars behind wouldn’t have had the opportunity to build momentum.

ISSUE 2
It does seem that cars are out of line before the green flag flies. Nothing wrong with anticipating the start. Everyone does it at some time, sometimes you get it right, and sometimes you get it wrong. We have all been there. Some are better at it than others (hey Mr Pink). However it is NOT legal to pull out of line prior to the green, you have to be side by side in line with the cars ahead.

Because we accelerated and then slowed, and because of the gaps between the cars, the field compresses, some slow down, some stay on it and come out of line before the green is shown.

On the wave of the green flag, I jump out from behind Andrew and I manage to get alongside Andrew, and get a bump from Jim, which pushes me ahead. Chip comes down the inside and holds the inside line. Chip and I are one/two in SM coming into T1, with Nick Levrone directly on my outside.

The red Honda T3 ahead does a really wide apex and then literally parks it, coming straight at us. Just as Drago decides to go to my inside to follow Chip on the inside line, I have to lift slightly to avoid hitting the Honda. I have no idea what Jim is doing behind me. I am fully focused on avoiding the Honda and not pinching Chip into the wall, and worrying about Nick on my right.

On the exit Chip runs me out to the grass, only when I come on the track do I realize that half the field is missing. In the video, looking at the rear view mirror you can see it all play out, but I had no idea there had been a wreck until my crew informed me on the radio.

I will post my video tonight.

I am sure that others will see it differently and be only too keen to jump in and point fingers.

Last year I posted the VIR race start video where there was total carnage and took endless BS from the peanut gallery, so I know what to expect. Have at it. Flame suit on.

--------------------
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Jim Creighton
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I've got to jump in here although I didn't have dog in the hunt.

I stood right beside Leland Miller, the Chief Steward, when he made the announcement at the impound all after the Sunday AM qualifying that the T3 cars would start first. He explained that it didn't work on Saturday very well because the T3 cars had to work their way through the entire 55 car SM field and there were some close calls.

Not one single driver asked for a split start, Instead everyone clapped and thanked him. Had any of you asked for a split start or a second pace car, I'm sure Leland would have said ok. With the fastest T3 being 7 seconds faster, I don't think anyone even dreamed they would not accelerate away and be gone from the SM cars before turn 1.

Yes, SM had a big field and yes T3 (all 3 of them) were added in so one driver could compete in T3 & T2. But, this still goes back to the old universal you can't win a race at turn one on the first lap. Each of you were told that at your very first drivers school.

Knowing many of you as I do, some of you have manned up just as I would expect you too. Others have said nothing. But, to attack this Chief Steward and throw him into the average Steward complaints is not right. I know Leland well and he is one of the best, most caring Stewards we have in the program. I feel bad for those whose races were hurt. But, this was not the fault of the Chief Steward. I'm not going to go into fault because most likely each involved knows this including the drivers who went before the front row.

This kind of reminds me of once when I went to Summit Point. Had one of those races where the locals had the advantage cause they knew the track better. I made a couple of moves one of which put me out in the runoff area at turn #1. I made it back to the leader but lost by a nose. After the race, I went over to congratulate the local who beat me. He said thanks but it was obvious something was wrong. When I asked him about it, his wife answered by saying I had lowered his track record by over a second and now he had to figure how to go that fast.

Does that remind you of this race? Man, a 2:36.750. And to come from 35th to 6th. That is getting up on the wheel.

See you at Homestead.

BTW, I asked the Chief Steward for Homestead last night to consider moving STU from the SM group to the Prod group. He doesn't have to but it would more balance numbers and let any of you who might want to run STU to do so.

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Like protests of cars it is the responsibility of the DRIVER to recognize a potential issue and MAKE A REQUEST / PROTEST.

Hardly the fault of any VOLUNTEER Steward.

We have a GCR right [Smile]

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I am taxiing out so I don't have time to read all those long posts!! When the videos are shown I believe it will show that many behind the front row jumped the start (not timed perfectly). None of that matters now but as a group we need to get this under control or more cars are going to get damaged and someone is going to get hurt. All of us have seen this happen and all of us are to blame (at one time or another) for doing the same thing. I do not know what can be done but it would be nice if something was. I will go back and read the posts tonight. I am not calling anybody out but videos could help shed some light on what happened so we can take corrective action in the future. I KNOW none of the drivers or SCCA wanted the start to happen the way it did but we are seeing these type of starts everywhere now and they are becoming very expensive. That is just my two cents..

--------------------
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hey its selin, on my dad's account.
so i have a video from the race, but i don't have the cables and i don't know how to put it on the computer. if you want to see my video, just find me in homestead and i will be happy to show you.
and i also have a video that i can upload that my dad took from upstairs over the pits if anyone wants me to put that up..

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Hey Selin
I will see you at Homestead and post the videos up here. Will be interesting to see the view from above.

--------------------
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Here’s the video guys – sorry for the wait.

I purposefully encoded in WMV at large resolution (1660x1080) so you could see it all but to keep the file size manageable I cut it off after T1.

Here are the timecodes of the events as they unravel

0:05 You will see that initially Andrew keeps a gap between the SM filed and the two T3 cars ahead.

0:12 As Andrew rolls under the bridge he starts to accelerate, gapping Bolanos and myself, but is closing fast on the T3 cars ahead, and has to come off the gas.

0:17 I increase speed to close the gap

0:22 Just as I get to his bumper they throw the green (clearly seen waving on the tower). You can see the nose of Alex's car lift at the exact time I hit the gas, and with the momentum I get a good jump on Andrew. Drago is directly behind me and not out of line.

0:25 Drago’s gives me a bump. Chip is in the picture and you can see him through Drago’s window.

0:35 Chip has a huge head of steam and hugs the wall pulling inside of me as we get to T1. Nick Levrone is not in the picture but is close on my right.

0:37 Drago makes a move to follow Chip on my inside just as I and Nick lift to avoid running into the Honda. As the Honda comes into screen you will see Drago lightly brush my bumper and with the car loaded it immediately spins. Carnage ensues

0.44 Chip takes me onto the grass on the exit of T1 and Nick comes up behind me. Only as I get on this straight do I get to notice the field is missing

Is Andrew to blame? Certainly not in my opinion – he did what he thought was the right thing to do. In retrospect I am sure he would do it differently.

Am I to blame? I’ll let you guys decide that.

Is Drago to blame? In my opinion Drago times it perfectly as we all do on occasion, but he doesn’t pull out before the green, and the gap formed that allowed that acceleration was because Andrew gapped us.

Is Chip to blame? In my opinion he is also well inline as the green goes, but also carrying a head of steam.

Is the Honda to blame? Hell no he was there first and gets the right to choose his line. We have to lift. Simple. And then the accordion affect starts.

I say it again – for the SM field, we need a separate run group or we need a LARGE gap between us and any group in front of us.

At this start and EVERY OTHER SIMILAR START, when we run up on a slow car while we are still bunched up, we always have this kind of result as we are all so evenly matched and can all run 3-5 wide through a corner giving each other room, UNTIL something goes wrong and then it goes to pieces.

I look forward to the comments.

Spec Miata Race 2 - Start - Sebring Double National 2011

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quote:
Originally posted by Danny Steyn:
Here’s the video guys – sorry for the wait.


Wowzers! I really don't like mixed class racing for reasons such as this. We're extra fortunate in SWDiv to have our own run group.

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quote:
Originally posted by Jim Creighton:
I know Leland well and he is one of the best, most caring Stewards we have in the program.

Jim, I couldnt agree with you more. I was really impressed with the way Leland conducted the drivers meeting on Saturday. He had everyones attention and spoke with authority and kept to the point. Best drivers meeting I have been to.

On a side note I was also thankful for the explanation from the tow truck operators explaining how to correctly hand signal our needs to them from the car when we are stopped on the track or in a tire barrier. In my 2-1/2 years of racing this is the first time that someone has explained this to me. Very helpful to all.

And with regards to the split start on Saturday he gave us what we wanted. On Sunday we could have demanded it again and I am sure he would have done it again, but I honestly think that we all thought that with a small gap between the T3 group and us, T1 would be easy and then there would be no issue at all. In retrospect we learned another lesson.

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quote:
this still goes back to the old universal you can't win a race at turn one on the first lap.
My 1/2 assed, wasn't there, watched it on TV opinion is the T3 cars had nothing to do with the crashing. The same result could have occurred in SM-only group. Too many cars - not enough real estate.

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quote:
Originally posted by d mathias:
quote:
this still goes back to the old universal you can't win a race at turn one on the first lap.
My 1/2 assed, wasn't there, watched it on TV opinion is the T3 cars had nothing to do with the crashing. The same result could have occurred in SM-only group. Too many cars - not enough real estate.
Agree with that assessment, but had the T3 cars not been there, I expect the start would have been more linear in speed increase and not the first two rows accelerating, then slowing and allowing people from 5-6 rows back to get killer jumps and pass them going into 1.

I can sympathize with Andrew/Alex and their voice box called Jamie [Wink] [Wink] [Wink] , as I was held up on the start at Sebring in the January 10 national by some out of class cars and the entire SM class (almost) passed me into turn 1 and I was pole!

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