Wilmington Tour

posted Aug 5, 2013, 7:21 PM by Scoob Edoo
The inaugural event at the Wilmington Airborne Airpark was a Championship Tour the weekend before school started back for the kids.  Kieran and I made the trip (about 6 hours) with the little trailer since we couldn't sleep in paddock.  We arrived in time to walk the karts over to the practice course and Kieran got right into his kart and out on course.  He was happy with the set up - it was a beautiful sunny day and very similar to conditions at Blytheville - so we left it as is for Saturday.  After going through Tech and walking Saturday's course a few times, we got dinner and checked into the hotel.  Kieran went to the pool and played for awhile, then we went to bed.

Saturday started off wet with prospects for more rain throughout the day.  It didn't disappoint, raining sporadically, at times heavily.  I worked as the Youth Steward and we had three kids in JA and three more in JB.  National Staff decided to try to integrate the kids even further into the heat by running them at the beginning followed immediately by KM, bridging the down time for the juniors.  So it actually worked pretty well, but I was running back and forth during our runs.  We had to hot swap the helmet cam, Kieran running it over to me as I sat at the line.  Couldn't get it switched for my last run on Saturday because it was so quick.  But both of us did improve on each of our runs to finish Saturday in good shape: Kieran leading by 19 sec and me in 3rd by 0.7 sec.

Sunday's course was about 95% the same as Saturday's, run in reverse.  When we walked it on Saturday evening, I thought it would run a little slower because of the tighter entry to a few of the elements.  In reality it was a much faster course run in that direction with the entries into the fastest elements faster than Saturday's, and it flowed really well once you got the hang of the tight entries - going slower where necessary to go faster after really worked very well on that course.

Conditions were ideal on Sunday again.  I narrowed my rear track by 1/2" to settle the rear end a little.  I was still a little tail-happy so for my 2nd run I removed my rear stiffening bar and the kart was very stable.  If I hadn't had a wardrobe malfunction, the run would have been very good.  But my chin strap got looser and looser as I ran and the updraft kept lifting the helmet up farther and farther.  I tried to pull it down a few times but eventually missed a fast apex and didn't get everything I'd hoped for out of the run.  Even so I improved 1.1 sec from my first run.  Last run I stuck to the plan and made sure the chin strap wouldn't come loose.  I dropped another 1.1 sec on the last run to move up into 2nd behind Alan, leapfrogging Jason who couldn't improve on his 2nd run.

Meanwhile, Kieran was trying to keep up with the Regannies (Tom and Kate) in JA.  While he was fast, Tom is a National Champion and was pretty fast both days.  Kieran wasn't far behind, though, and improved by 2 sec on each of his runs Sunday to end up winning by 37.7 sec.

Since we worked and ran at the same time, we were done as soon as we got released from Impound.  Loaded the trailer (made much simpler by zero prospects for rain, so no need to put covers on) and hit the road by 1:40.  We made it home by 8:00 and Kieran took a shower and went to bed.  School started this morning and he was fully rested.  All in all a very successful weekend.  That is our last planned National event of the year.  Maybe two more "local" events in Knoxville in September.

Next up: my 24 hour ChumpCar race report from VIR.