We went to Snetterton for a MSV track day today. @Beany @Helpimonfire @jimmybell
were all booked on to the track day as well.
The track day looked like it was sold out as there were a lot of cars there. There was a good selection of Clios including the four from here in addition to a few more 197s and 200s and some 182s. The paddock had been taken over by Fun Cup lorries and a massive marquee. The Fun Cup drivers turned out to be rather annoying as they seemed to refuse to move over and allow you to pass when they were running slower. They were responsible for at least half of the red flags today with broken down cars.
@BigBen came to the track day and spent a few hours regretting the fact that he did not have driving licence with him and could not book on to take his new motor for a spin. It was good to see Ben.
After doing the safety briefing and sighting laps we got started on track. @EthanMenace
did the first session on track. The MRFs that we had on the Ultraleggra wheels had worn quite quickly at Thruxton and I was expecting the tyres to take a battering at Snetterton. We decided to up the pressure on the tyres to 35 psi hot from the usual of 28 to 30 psi that we normally ran the tyres at. The tyres when warmed up were giving enough grip to get round corners but also to allow the car to rotate. At then end of the first session @EthanMenace
had set a lap time of 2m 26 to improve on throughout the day.
I went out for second session which was red flagged before I even got out of the pit lane. Then after doing three laps the session was red flagged again.
Ethan went out for the third session and spent most of the time chasing @Helpimonfire
mate Wes - the one with the Golf R. But Wes was not very interested in driving his own car and was driving during this session in @Beany
Clio. Wes appears to have no fear and was clearly enjoying himself tearing through the traffic. The rest to the day followed this pattern chasing Clios and other cars on track without too much traffic, but just enough to make it very enjoyable.
After finally getting a decent session under my belt I started to feel really in control of the Clio. I have spent most track days knowing that the car is very capable but not having the confidence to push it to the edge. Today things just clicked for me around the track and I suddenly had the confidence to launch the Clio in fourth gear at 90 mph in to Riches, to keep the throttle planted around Williams, and to do 80 mph around Coram. I was quite happy with a lap time of 2m 26s as a result of just enjoying myself.
Ethan told me that today is the first time he has felt comfortable in the car with my driving, rather than gripping the seat in fear wondering what might happen!
In the afternoon the fun continued. We took turns having sessions on track where the Clio continued to perform really well catching most powerful cars in the corners and keeping up in the battles even though the other cars may have had better straight line speed.
The last sessions of the day were probably the best. Ethan went out closely followed by @jimmybell
who had Wes as his passenger to give him some tips. Towards the end of the session @jimmybell
disappeared in a cloud of smoke as his engine let go as we went through Brundle. I managed to use the last 15 minutes of a track day to get a bit faster.
This is @EthanMenace
fastest lap of the day at 2m 22s.
I managed to do a respectable 2m 25s today.
The tyres did not wear much at all today. I was expecting to have to throw away the current MRFs after today but it looks like they will be good enough to use at Donington next month. As we will not have to pay to change the tyres over in May it means there is more money left in the pot for the cup spoiler.
The day ended on a bit of a sour note as @jimmybell
engine had a catastrophic failure of some kind.
I recored a lot of footage today which should include @Beany @Helpimonfire
so I will upload it at some point.