The Racing Chica

Bodurant Racing School-Day 1

I signed up for Bondurant's last minute deals, I figured since we were in the area might as well. I have been wanting to go to a racing school for a few years now. I got an email saying they had availability. The sales person was really helpful in helping me choose the correct course with my experience.  So I signed up for the 4-day Forza Motorsport Grand Prix Road Racing. 

Looks like I'm not the only one not used to writing 2018, lol!

Looks like I'm not the only one not used to writing 2018, lol!

OMG first day of Bondurant was so fun! The first day starts with checking-in. The lady at the desk greats you with a warm smile. I see all sorts of people there. The demographics consisted of young, old, women, men, Asians, Whites, and I was the only Latino. Once everyone is there we all go into a classroom. I noticed that people were wearing 3 different color of badges. Later found out Red is for HPDE, Yellow is for Grand Prix, and Blue is for Advance Road course.

The chief instructor Mike comes in and ask us to do introductions most people are teenagers whose parents thought it would be a good idea for their kids to improve their driving skills. I agree 100%, we need more safe drivers on the road. I did notice that I was the only woman that was in the advance courses which is kinda interesting. I am curious if this is the norm or not.

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After intros Mike goes over some fundamentals and then we all headed out to the patio and followed Mike for a tour of the place. We got to see the shop and the museum with some of Bob Bondurant's cars.

After the museum tour there were 2 black vans waiting for us. Sixteen of us piled into the van, anxiously awaiting for what was going to happen next. The instructor takes all of us for the ride of our lives...in a van. He vigorously takes us through a slalom, shows us accident avoidance techniques...and then...around the Maricopa Oval and Lake Loop. He did things in that van that I didn't think was humanly possible. As I watched the van in front of us I thought surely it was going to tip over any minute and we would soon follow. I sat in the back so I felt everything, the ass wiggle, the weight transfer, the elevation change that made me almost fly out of the chair if it wasn't for my seat belt. After our crazy ride we went into the classroom to get some more instruction. After that we took a break and met out on the patio where Pat Bondurant greeted us and thanked us for being there. We then go take a class picture together. After class my Yellow Badge people were separated from the rest and we are paired up with our instructors. I was paired up with two dudes and our instructor Rob.

We hopped in the instructor's car and he showed us where we are going to practice heel-toe and how to heel-toe. Then we go back to pick out our Dodge SRT Hellcat. I got car number 37. My first impressions were mmm new car smell. The seats are super comfortable, the display was pretty cool. I learned that car has 2 keys a black key and a red key. The car let me know that the horsepower was throttled down to 500 hp because I had the black key. Also I learned the car was set up on street suspension and there was nothing I could do about it. The clutch pedal was pretty stiff compared to my car. The car is really well balanced for how heavy it is. The steering wheel was smooth but heavy, a good heavy.

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After getting a feel for the car we all go out to heel toe. I try my best to heel-toe and O...M...G... it was a disaster. Heel-toe is my arch nemesis right now. It is so freaking hard! The teacher explained the sequence. Brake with the ball of your foot, clutch in, downshift, pivot ankle to blimp the accelerator, once RPMs wrap down, let go of clutch pedal. Easier said than done. Heel-toe I will not let you win! I will concur you! After feeling a bit defeated we had an hour lunch break.

After lunch we went out to practicing consistent radius corner and increasing radius corner on Maricopa Oval. Now I was in my element. I got to practice the crap out of trail breaking. Which I know i needed to work on. The only 2 things the instructor said I needed to work on is letting the car go further right on turn 5 and be a little careful when applying throttle when exiting the same corner. I applied a little bit too much gas which induced a tiny bit of oversteer.


After lunch we went out to practicing consistent radius corner and increasing radius corner on Maricopa Oval. Now I was in my element. I got to practice the crap out of trail breaking. Which I know i needed to work on. The only 2 things the instructor said I needed to work on is letting the car go further right on turn 5 and be a little careful when applying throttle when exiting the same corner. I applied a little bit too much gas which induced a tiny bit of oversteer. 

After being on the oval our group and the HDPE got to practice accident avoidance. There were 3 lights depending what color and how many were green or red told us what to do. For example, if all lights were red we had to slam on the brakes to get used to what ABS felt like. I found this exercise easy but fun. After the practice our group got to try heel-toe again. During lunch I was practicing the movement. This time around I felt less discouraged as I managed to get heel-toe close to 3 times. I still need to perfect it. Now to go stretch, my ankle and neck are sore, lol! So stoked for Day 2!!!

Ciao!

 

Global Time Attack Season

"Go for Broke" that is my mantra this year. I have nothing to lose, nothing to fear. I don't want to live my life with regrets. 

I decided to take a HUGE risk and race in Global Time Attack (GTA) this year. The following is the 2017 tentative schedule:

  • Feb 25---Willow Springs Raceway
  • April 15---Buttonwillow Raceway
  • May 12-13---Road Atlanta
  • June 10--- Willow Springs Raceway
  • July 16---Auto Club Speedway
  • Oct 1---Auto Club Speedway
  • Nov 9-10--- Buttonwillow Raceway

I plan on racing in all the events except for February. I have a lot of suspension and aero work I have to do. I will do my damnest to finish everything before February. The reason for attending GTA is to share my passion for cars and racing with the world. GTA gets quite the social media coverage. 

I am asking for help from everyone, I created a GoFundMe page please check it out and share if you know anyone who is passionate about Motorsports.

 https://www.gofundme.com/theracingchica

Dyno Day

I have always been so curious how much horsepower my car puts out to the wheels. I took it to Ryan at Simple Performance. I found Ryan to be super helpfully, knowledgeable, and nice. He did 3 pulls on a Mustang Dyno that has a weather machine. It has an algorithm that calculates the true whp and wtq based on sea level, temperature, humidity, etc. I was shocked at how much whp my car did! I couldn't stop smiling :) 

The WFC (Weather Correction Factor) said it was about 237 whp and 300 wtq! The torque is the one that really surprised me! Can I say #torquemonter ? Mustang dyno numbers are also a bit lower than the real thing. People usually add about 10% to the numbers. But these are just numbers, the real test is out on the track.

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It seems the car could be overboosting because of the cold or MAF sensor could be dirty. I will work with Logan to get an e-tune to level out the graph. If you ever wondered what your car puts out I would highly recommend putting it on the dyno. If you decide to upgrade the car make sure to use the same dyno to not get skewed numbers. 

Ciao!