Philly #9 - Delaware Park!

posted Sep 21, 2009, 5:37 AM by Scoob Edoo   [ updated Sep 21, 2009, 6:15 AM ]
Philly acquired a new site for this event.  Delaware Park is a casino, horse racing track, etc.  They have a few lots that don't see too much action and the one lot is perfectly flat and in great shape.  Few cars have apparently ever seen this lot and it was ours for an event yesterday.  As my kart is out of commission with a (few) blown motor(s), the plan was to focus on Kieran and also Killeen, who expressed some interest in driving for the first time.  [I think that latter bit is related to us picking up Kieran's cadet kart last week so Killeen realizes that the small one is going to be hers next year.  Cool!]

But Ed Liu from WDCR decided to come up to run with us in his kart and offered me a ride.  Ed just had his big adventure going out to Lincoln for Nationals - where he and Justin broke the right spindle on day one.  So he had his replacement and wanted to test out the kart to see if the rest was OK.  Yay!  I jumped in with him and we had a blast.  The lot was pretty dirty from non-use, so running first heat presented some oversteer issues.  His kart does respond well to corrections, though, so we were able to sustain nice drifts on a couple of the sweepers and go full throttle on the back 'straight' to the finish.  His kart drives differently from mine in that turn-in on mine is a bit more responsive since I put my 20 lbs of lead up front.  But who needs responsive steering when you have power to whip the back end out whenever you want?!  And his front right brake disc is warped from the spindle incident, so we were braking in a right arc at the finish (so much so that I took out a few finish cones when I couldn't figure out why I was moving right when I was pointed straight.  Turns out that I also had a cone stuffed under the kart on that run, so that was part of the problem...

We only had 108 people, so we did it SJR style again, and everyone got two cracks at the course.  The PM session was much better since all of those cars had gone through and removed a bunch of the sand that was plaguing us early on.  Ed and I both went faster on the cleaner line but neither had the perfect run that we knew was out there.  We should have been in the low 31 sec range, but both got stuck in the low 32 sec range.  Even so, I thought that my fast run was good enough for FTD - even though I had shifted with my hand on one of the turns and was in 5th gear for the last half of the course.  It turns out that Sal had gone faster on his 4th or 5th run and we missed it.  He ran a 31.98, pipping me by 0.18, as usual.  NEWMAN!

Kieran also got two goes at the course and he improved on each run, as usual.  The morning he wasn't pushing hard enough and lost a lot at the beginning.  In the PM session I told him to push from the very start and his times dropped by over 3 seconds.  His last run was his best (again, as usual) when he broke into the 47 sec range.  We had to use Ed's helmet cam to get any video of Kieran since my SD card was not functioning properly.  There's a ghost in the card or the camera that I need to sort out right quick.  I'll get a 4 GB SDHC card this week to see if that is the problem.

At the end of the day (a beautiful, perfect, early-autumn day) Killeen said she wanted to drive the kart.  The course lot was completely cleaned up, so we went down there and Steven helped us get her ready and tested out on the brakes and gas before sending her out to drive in some circles.  She enjoyed it and really liked the sensation of turning in very quickly to get the "almost spin" sensation.  She did it several times and enjoyed the time in the kart a lot.  She did a better job running the kart than she does riding her bike, so she may show some natural talent toward driving.  If she fit in the kart better I might let her drive the last event of the season, but I think she needs some time doing course walking with me and Kieran before she understands how it all works.

Overall, a great day, but long with the hour drive to and fro the site.  Big thanks to Ed for letting me drive with him and taste more Honda power.