- We've just got to Ruapuna for the last round of the endurance championship and neither
Ben or I have driven here before so it's been pretty daunting.
It's quite a tricky track, particularly the centre section of the track is quite tight,
there's quite a lot of sharp corners.
We've put in probably a couple of 100 laps each on Assetto Corsa, our simulator
and to be honest it does actually really help, at least to know what way the track's going.
So at the moment the car has been suffering from some pretty bad understeer.
We just softened the front sway bar, that made a big improvement but we are running for
our practice day just on our old Hankooks and we've just made the decision to swap
back to our Michelins.
At Highlands we found the Michelins were just so much better than the Hankooks so not
a lot of point practising on a tyre we're not going to race on tomorrow and we're not
going to probably learn a lot so we'll see how the Michelins go in this next session.
- Between Highlands and Ruapuna we've made some changes to the fuel system.
We were having problems where we couldn't run the fuel very low at all.
How many litres did you say?
- 16 we were getting surge.
- And now we're down to like.
- Which really limits your options with pitstops.
With this system, which we've installed two Radium surge tanks in each side of the tank,
feeding a Radium surge tank, we were able to get down to five litres.
We've just been black flagged for having fuel leaking out of the right rear of the car
as we go around a left hand corner.
We've diagnosed that as fuel sloshing out of the tank, coming out of the vent hose,
not being stopped by the discriminator valve and then getting out onto the track
which is obviously not ideal.
Brandon's hard at work now mounting that discriminator valve higher inside the boot
of the car and we're going to run a piece of hose off the top of it to hopefully prevent that
Just ran out of brakes at the end of the straight, went through the gravel track.
Kind of had to throw it sideways a little bit to keep it off the wall.
It was reasonably exciting.
The worst bit is I forgot to turn the GoPro on so you'll just have to take my word for
it that I was a hero and saved it.
At the end of the front straight on the fastest bit of the track, fastest braking
zone, I hit the brakes and basically didn't have enough which was amplified by a
choice to brake quite late into that corner too.
Got it back to the puts and the guys took the wheels off, inspected the brake pads
and we've basically got no front pads on the front right.
And turns out you definitely need those if you want to stop.
So now we're scrambling to see if we can get another set of brake pads tonight or
tomorrow morning that we can bang in this and have a possibility of racing.
We, can you pass me my hat for the next section, 'cause I want to look really pretty.
- Day one finished, practice day, day of highs and lows.
Obviously Ben's little excursion off the track at 230 odd K into turn one, pretty exciting,
but he managed it pretty well 'cause the car's still intact.
So we've got this brake issue that we're working through, we've got some new pads
to go in it tomorrow.
It's probably kind of a bit of bandaid, we're going to try and add some more brake cooling
as well because otherwise we're just going to smoke these new pads.
If we can get on top of that, pretty confident that we should be able to get through a one
On the up side, both Ben and I managed to do pretty representative lap times down into
the 31s so pretty happy there.
Car's handling well, feels really balanced out on the track, got some fresh rubber to go
on in the morning so that'll be good.
And on top of that we seem to be on top of our fuel pressure issue which has kind
of chased us around both Teretonga and Highlands so it'll be nice, fingers crossed,
to get a clean race where we can actually race hard and get to the finish so looking
forward to it.
- I'm a youtuber.
Day two here at Ruapuna and last night we had to make some brake pads fit,
we couldn't get the right size and apparently the front right kept getting pretty badly worn
going into the first turn.
So we got a new set of brake pads that I had to make fit but should work for today.
- [Jono] How'd you make them fit?
- Had to cut them with an angle grinder so pretty dodgy but safe to fit and works so
we'll get it going.
Ben's just gone out for his first scrub session bedding the new brakes and
the tyres and we're going to get Andre in the car to do qualifying.
- It's race day here at Ruapuna and it's not starting well.
Ben's just gone out for a 10 minute scrub session on some fresh rubber and ended
up after a few laps with a lot of smoke coming out the back of the car.
This is a problem that we've had the entire endurance championship and it's to do
with the DriveShaft Shop axles that we're running in the rear of the car and essentially
they seem, on all accounts to be just a touch too short.
When we put the DriveShaft Shop 1000 horsepower axles side by side with stock,
they're around about 15 millimetres shorter than stock so we think that basically what's
happening, it's just applying enough pressure to the Driveshaft Shop axle that it's pulling
it past the circlip that retains it inside of the diff and it just pops it out and then of
course it's leaking oil out onto the exhaust.
So we're in a bit of a predicament here, we've got qualifying in about 15 minutes,
then after that we've got a 40 minute gap until the race and it's not really enough
time so what we're going to try and do here, I'll go out and just do a handful of laps in
qually, try and get a lap time that's at least borderline representative, get us somewhere
up the field, and we're going to come back in early and the boy's are going to get to
work changing the rear axles back to stock.
That's actually a reasonably large job because we also have to change the wheel bearing
assembly because we're running a larger Driveshaft Shop wheel bearing to go with
the larger spline so little bit of work, not really what we needed.
It was perfect all yesterday, we thought we were on top of it, that's racing.
So I just finished my first stint, I decided to start the race and it was a really good start,
I managed to pick off at least I think two positions during the rolling start which
was positive and managed to settle into a rhythm pretty well, managed to sort of
catch up to the BB Nissan GTR which is actually in our class so that one counts.
Chased him down for a good few laps, he's faster in a straight line, we're faster
through the infield section.
In the end, coming into turn one, he got held up by a slower car,
managed to put a pass up the inside of him and held him off.
Had a really good battle with the Audi TCR who was probably a little bit quicker than me
but managed to hold her off for my entire stint so pitted, came into the pit lane,
the team were all set up in a pit space with our fuel ready to go and in front
of me was a Honda TCR pitted basically exactly where the team had set up so
I was already in pit lane, massive scramble to move everything across and in that
scramble, only one of the fuel, basically instead of getting our full 40 odd
litres into the tank, we ended up only getting 25 so right now Ben's out there circulating,
he's first in class, we're not sure if he's going to get to the end, we've got about
12 minutes left to run so fingers crossed, could be a little bit scary.
- Bit of an unfortunate end to the race there.
We were in first place in our class, we had a good lead over second.
Then we broke an axle which is pretty disappointing, pretty heartbreaking.
Showed that the car had pace, we were doing well, our pitstop strategy worked,
it just didn't end up with any results.
So good and bad and sometimes you've got to take it like that.
- Any good battles?
- Nah, nah I was like battling the car.
- [Brandon] If you were to sum up the day in one word.
- Liquorice allsorts.
Terrible but lots of different levels of terrible.
Rip, feels bad.
- Unfortunately a DNF isn't the way we wanted to finish our last round of the South Island
Endurance Series but that is the hand we've been dealt so with that broken axle
with nine minutes left to run, there was really nothing we could do about it.
And it was a risk that we knew we were taking when we decided to swap from
our DriveShaft Shop axles back to stock.
We've got some work to do in the off season trying to figure out what's going
Doesn't help that those DriveShaft Shop axles appear to be 15 mm shorter than
our standard axles so we'll get onto DriveShaft Shop, figure out what's
the problem there so we've got a rock solid solution for next year.
Despite that, got to take away some positives with the weekend,
we were running in first place prior to that axle failure.
I think over the last three rounds that we've competed in, everyone's learned a lot,
the team have worked really well together and while Ben and I are driving the car,
this really is a team effort and particularly the pitstops, we really need to make
those pitstops work well and quickly to be competitive on track.
So really we are pretty happy with everything, at the end of the day the car didn't make
it to the finish line, everyone's still smiling, we've got next year to see if
we can improve on things but for now, time for a beer.