Trackspeed Engineering @ Buttonwillow 13CW - NASA October 13-14, 2012
In addition to winning our enduro class and helping Team 949 Racing win all 5 enduro classes in the final WERC event of the year, I also qualified on pole and won both PTE races, beating the "unbeatable" SoCal PTE Rx7s.
Got out near the front of the grid, got by everyone who was still warming up, and was able to find some relatively clear track. First flyer was a 2:02.2, but I wanted that 2:01.x bad and I found it on the next lap. I believe this is the PTE lap record for Buttonwillow 13CW.
Saturday race: I start from P1 in PTE, qualifying ~0.9sec faster than the P2 Rx7. The Rx7s have significantly more power, but poor handling and tires that fall off at the end of the race. At the start, I do my best to block the Rx7's progress, outbrake, and ensure I am ahead going into Turn 2. Exiting T2, I miss 3rd gear (dying synchro) and the Rx7 pulls alongside entering T3, but it's not enough. I outbrake and he makes a big mistake exiting Cotton Corners.
We had a full-course yellow a few minutes in which allowed the Rx7s to close the gap I opened in the first few laps, but they never got close enough to seriously threaten me.
Sunday race: I start from P1 in PTE on Sunday as well. The Rx8 to my left is a PTD car which qualified 7 seconds slower than I did. I bump the PTD NC in front at the start to keep momentum, and watch as the Rx8 AND the Rx7 who started P2 in PTE drive straight by me on the left. In my right mirror is another white Rx7 who drove from P5 to alongside me entering T1 - talk about power. As the Rx8 checks up entering T1, I dive as deep as I dare into a hole that I know will quickly close. As we all turn in, the white Rx7 to my right gets crossed up and puts a nose into my RF fender/right door, hooking the front edge of the door and pulling me to the outside. This allows the Rx8 to drive by, but I know he's slow so I outbrake him into T2 (Buttonhook) and start driving away.
The P2 Rx7 got close enough on lap 2 that I had to defend entering T1 (Sunrise), and I had to drive 4 or 5 qualifying-level laps in a row to put distance on him. He fell back as his tires fell off, and that was that. The rest of the race is fairly uneventful (save for a PTF Rx7 not watching his mirrors and nearly putting me into the weeds).
We're still shaking our heads at the 2:01.9. A year ago everyone would have laughed if you told them a PTE car could run that fast. Andrew and I knew better. Just a matter of getting the formula we already had for both our rentals adapted to W2W and then doing some genius driving. Congrats dude. Well done!