Club Calabogie – June 9, 2010

Wednesday dawned partly cloudy and cooler, and I lay in bed wondering if it might rain. If so, maybe I would skip this day at Calabogie. I got up and checked the weather forecast and it looked OK. So I had my orange juice, put the coffee on and went up to shave and shower. Once dressed, I found the first mistake of the day. I hadn’t turned on the coffee! So I was already behind and hadn’t even started yet. After killing some time waiting for the coffee, I finally hit the road about 10 minutes late. I did my usual routine of stopping for more coffee and some breakfast en route and arrived at the track about 8:15. There were only a couple of cars there, but I was sure that more would appear shortly. I began to get organized for the unloading, only to discover that I couldn’t find the key to the Porsche! I looked everywhere, but it simply wasn’t there!

By this time, Bruce had arrived and my friend Ray had parked next to me. We talked for a few minutes about the folly of my ways – but it seems I’m not the first one to make that mistake. I won’t name names, but I already did! After a brief discussion, I decided to unhitch the trailer and drive back home to get the key. At worst I would miss the morning’s track time, but with unlimited access I would still have four hours available to satisfy my appetite for speed. So I took off a few minutes after 9, after unhitching and locking the trailer, and tried to maintain a sensible but aggressive speed all the way home. When I arrived, I found the key in the old jeans I’d been wearing the day before when I loaded the car on the trailer. Back I went to the track, arriving about 11:45. It turned out that the lunch break was scheduled for noon, so I had plenty of time to offload, change my shoes, catch up with a few more guys and grab an Italian sausage “dog” from the new concession stand. Bruce was kind enough to give me a cutrate price for the afternoon’s lapping, which was a nice bonus.

While driving home I had seen my friends Thane and Dave on their way to the track, so we all got together with Ray and a couple of other guys and hung out for the afternoon.  Ray was driving the Diasio and getting tips from Bruce (and a ride-along) in his Radical, while Dave has a recent Carrera S. Thane has an ’81 SC Targa and our cars are almost identical in terms of speed and handling, both being on street tires. So we went out together each time, playing follow, and catch-if-you-can, the leader. Neither of us ever passed the other, nor did we lose sight of each other. It was good fun and probably contributed to our lap times being pretty good. Most of the ones I videoed were 2:47, with the fastest being a 2:45. For the most part, I stuck to the “teaching” line, except on the entry to Turn 12, where I stayed quite close to the right hand side to shorten the line – just like the entry to the esses at Le Circuit. We kept our stints fairly short, at between 18 and 23 minutes, so we wouldn’t get too tired. In total, I drove about 130 km, which works out to about 32 laps, spread over about 6 stints. By 4 o’clock, Thane had to leave and I had had enough, so we packed up and went home (again for me). I did a lot of driving today and I’m sure I’ll sleep well. But the track time was a great tune-up for Watkins Glen and for two instructional days next week. Oh, it started to spit rain when we left the track.

Video is posted at  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hS2imNjdNhw

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