Whew,, we made it!!! (well so far)

So we’re now ensconsed in that which is Altamont Motorsports Park.

It is a crazy sight that is just tough to manage, so here are a few word based snippets (having trouble linking the video right now).

Pimps and Ho’s, the ride, a sweet CRX and their crazy crew (the video is awesome) they had one heck of an entrance at tech.

Everyone has been so nice to each other (wait till we all get on the track)

Every kind of car, with every prep level,, from tight paint masking and nascar level trim, to cars that looked like they were dropped off a cliff to look better.

Finding people you already know, (and didn’t know they were into lemons racing)

Getting to meet the famous Murilee of Jalopnik in person finally (after talking via phone and email for so long).

The owner over at AltaMont Motorsports Park, John,, a great guy! He took me for a ride around the track and showed me what’s where this afternoon (shhhhh!!!)  Genuinely cares about getting people good information, being safe, and having a great time.  His car is he and a bunch of first time lemons people (and they’ve got a supermodified wing on a miata!)

I’m bushed and have forgotten things all through the day (like to eat) so I’m going to do that now.  If you see this post with any video,, it’s cause I finally got it to work.

Oh yeah, and the best news of all,,,

WE PASSED TECH INSPECTION!!!!

We’ll see you at altamont with an operational car!

Yes, we’re operational. Subscribe to us over at Youtube. Have fun ignoring it! (watch the next video!)

Altamont-The Track Map,, Seriously

John Condon\'s Track Map

Here’s what John says to do (I’d take his word for it!)

Cars exit from the pit-paddock area (Pit Out) just before T3 on the 1/2-mile oval and the track runs counterclockwise.  Banking at T3 is 12 degrees and 11 degrees at T4.  The LeMons track turns back into T4 of the integrated 1/4-mile oval which is 8 degrees, but because you’re now running the 1/4-mile track backwards, the corner is waaaaaaay off-camber.  This corner is called “The Bank.”  Up the 1/4-mile banking into “The Loop” (that Mickey Mouse looking ear between the two ovals) which is a double-apex corner, and getting this right is critical to owning the infield of the course.  Exiting “The Loop” brings you back onto the 1/4-mile at the entrance to T3… again, you’re running backwards onto the back-straight to the transition is waaaaaaaaay off camber as you drop down.  It’s trickier than it looks at speed but when there’s a lot of cars and traffic, any line will do — just get through it unscathed.  If you can do it at speed, it depends on what kind of car you have.  Rear engined cars (like my Porsche Turbo) hate the off-camber and slide all the way to San Jose before they stop.  In my GTA car, (550 HP) the torque pulls me out of the off-camber roll okay but the power curve is short in order to get set up for the next corner.  Front wheel drive cars are point and shoot… don’t lift… and trail-brake into the right-hander.  It’s a quick reverse of vehicle dynamics for the sharp right-hander into “The X” and by the middle of the “X” get far right for the exit out of “The X” onto the front straight of the 1/2-mile (4 degree banking).  T1 on the 1/2-mile usually has a man-made chicane to keep everyone honest. Out of T2 (on the 1/2-mile banking), the basic line is stay high to make an easy and fast transition into “The Esses.”  However, staying low is the defensive line to block the entry apex.  The esses can make you or break you.  Most drivers screw these up so bad that I have passed three cars in our Miata before they know what hit them.  The key: slow in and fast out.  Too fast in and you miss the apex… which puts your car completely out of sorts and in the dirt.  Slow in, hit the first two apexes solidly, then short shift to pick up the power curve for the exit.  This should give your drivers a basic understanding of what to expect.  BTW – in the Miata, we do 20 up-and-down shifts a lap, from 1st to 4th and back again.”
All the best –
John Condren
Team Heavy Downforce and somewhat associated with AMP

Alas poor Numskull, I am him,, true.

this stupidYes, I (Fred) am an idiot (but you really knew that already didn’t you).

When applying I brilliantly left out the fact that I needed the temp license too (my team’s laughter in the background).

I also remarkable just noticed that we need to come together as a team to set up exactly how many crew members we’re going to have and pre-pay them as well!

The “secured crew members” we have so far are:

Our great and all knowing crew chief Scott Schroeder.

My violent and beautiful wife Shannon Schechter (she’s in charge of pounding sheet metal,, not neccesarily our car, but that’s her job).

Likely other crew members who we’ll have to cajole properly

The Jukka-ette’s.

Shaun’s robot army (we will finish,, or others will not.)

Jaime’s partner in crime Beth.

and possibly some other surprise humans (I’ll try and get some serious muscle for jackmen).

More info soon (we’re rapidly hunting a seat, belts, fuel gauge, and left rear hub-brake assembly).

We’re # 29,, That’s like Kevin Harvick,, but,, totally different

So we’ve got a number,, after some heavy angling by certain teammates for numbers of varying ahem,, significance.  It turned out 29 was available,, so,, here it is.

29

We’re IN!!!!

On Tuesday March 4th 2008 at 11:05pm pacific standard time we were notified by the all knowing Jay Lamm, purveyor of Lemons Madness that,,,,,

We’re in the race!
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