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Struggles Continue at Croft

July 1, 2016

After a very quick turnaround, it was a long drive up the M1 to get to croft Circuit in Yorkshire, to support the BTCC for a second time this season. I was unable to do the pre-race test day so it would be straight into qualifying.

Straight away I could tell the car either was not set up properly or there was an issue with the suspension. I was struggling to get the car to stay on the circuit never mind get a quick lap time in. I was struggling with understeer and oversteer on almost every corner. This meant I qualified in a lowly 18th position, well down on my usual start position. 

 

In between qualifying and the race we made a number of changes to the set up to revert it back to a set up we knew worked well. However in the race, the car still felt very unstable and I really struggled in the race, however I started to try and drive around the problems and managed to make up 5 placed during the race to finish in 13th. 

We tried to understand what was causing the issue after the race and overnight and found that the wheels were deviating from their initial state during the race, as when we checked the tracking, the toe on each wheel was nowhere near what we had set it up as. We also found that there was a lot of play in the ball joints of the suspension which would not be helping with the handling of the car. However these problems were not able to be fixed overnight and we just had to re-set the toe in and toe out of the car ready for the race on Sunday.

The grandstands and banks were packed and the TV cameras ready for our second race of the weekend. However going into the race, Just from the warm up lap, I knew it would be a struggle to improve on my start position as the car still felt very unstable and was moving around a lot even at quite low speed. Nevertheless, I made up 3 positions during the race, including a nice overtake going into sunny-in on the penultimate lap of the race. 

At the end of the weekend there was a lot of work to do on the car to try and fix the suspension problems that were hampering us at this round. It is now a three week break before going to Spa and hopefully a car that will be driveable around the beautiful and iconic Spa-Francorchamps.

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