RatRace Round 4 Report
As some of you know I run a series of indoor racing in Istanbul, I do all the registration, and behind the scenes website work and promotion on www.ratrace.net and AytemizHobi run the race days with timing etc.
This was a first 1/10th indoor series in Turkey and what a fantastic series it has been with no 1/10th buggies ever being raced in Istanbul going to 48 new drivers joining the series, this has been a great success and more and more people are buying 1/10th buggies so I am very pleased to have been partly responsible for this along with AytemizHobi and our series sponsors – Team-NCRC, Speedy-Models, FenBilimleri School and MCSAT.
So the last and final round I was in 5th place overall in 2WD and needed to stay there or thereabouts. I started my weekend on Friday evening 4.30pm until 7.30pm constructing the track and laying down the layout with wood. Then on Saturday morning, at 7.30am I continued to do the track as first practice would be at 11.30am. When some of the 4WD drivers came they gave me a hand with final track preparations. I finished at about 10.30am. Then of course I had to get the RCSkool students ready with charging tables and fitting borrowed transponders along with Huseyin from Speedy-models.
So to say I was tired would be a big understatement on my part, but racing was to start so I quickly got my Xray XB4 ready.
4WD Day Saturday
The track layout was a tricky one and the biggest we had done so far thanks to some extra carpet donated by the Mini-Z club (Team Dark) in Istanbul. My car was not setup since the Northern Cyprus carpet race but I tried as it was and was very happy in the first practice sessions, gradually getting quicker and more comfortable until a car decided to stop in the middle of the fastest part of the track and session was over with broken front rear diff housing. Luckily I had another spare one so got straight to work on it after the marshalling stint.
Now on with qualifying and managed to get 3rd, 2nd, 2nd which put me in the top 3 in 3 rounds of 4 and then was leading the 4th round driving very well up until the last 2 laps and then like Déjà vu exactly the same crash but a different car stopping this time. Unfortunately no more spares so race day over for me. I was still happy with my driving which was improving.
I finished the series in 8th place and considering I only raced twice in four rounds that was good result for me.
2WD Day Sunday
Serdar Aytemiz (AytemizHobi) decided to run the track in reverse direction which was a surprise to everyone but me, as we had discussed the day before. My Serpent Spyder Mid Motor was still setup from Cyprus carpet race so I was going to start the practice sessions with this setup as it had worked well before.
In practice I had a few problems with the small jump at speed, the rear end wanted to kick me over all the time if I went to fast. So I played around with ride height and rear spring settings, I managed to get it a bit better but not good enough, so I tried a different driving tactic which helped.
My practice sessions went ok and managed to get into the faster group for qualifying. I made a lot of errors and wasted a lot of time over the one silly jump and due to my being still so tired I lacked the concentration I needed to get into the top 8. I managed 10th in qualifying overall which put me in the B-Final.
The B-Final was best 2 of 3 so I had to try and go well in the first 2, starting 2nd on the grid I hit the first leg with a great race between me and 1st place on the grid Batuhan Ozdemır, we battled right up to the last lap when a small error by me and Batuhan went past, over the line it was half a second between us, a great race.
In the next 2 finals I made a rookie mistake and changed a setting on my car which did not work and made the car harder to drive, so my fault but a great days racing with my lowest result in the series coming 12th.
In the championship I ended up in 6th place overall not too shabby for an old boy of 50, I was happy with this and the series was a great success. We are hoping to get new sponsors onboard who will be setting up the track for us and packing it away, I hope this happens.
I would like to say a big thank you to Fen Bilimleri Okulları (School) for allowing us to run the series at the school, without them I would not have been able to create the series at all. Also for allowing me to start the RCSkool with the students there who are learning how to race offroad.
I would like to thank all my personal sponsors
We need sponsors for the next series as we want to get some astro turf for the outdoor 1/10th track at Snappy Raceway in Istanbul so if any companies out there would like to sponsor we are only too happy to talk with you. The next series will be a mixture of outside and indoor so should be fun and interesting series.
See you all soon
AKA Tom How