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Thread: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

  1. #1

    Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    For those that are interested in it, registration for Rocky Mountain Race Week starts tomorrow (Saturday Feb. 17, 2018.)

    As of right now my son and I plan on running our cars (his '89 Daytona and my '87 Shadow.) I would love to see more turbo dodge cars run.

    Event details
    Race Week. Dates June 16th through the 22nd Saturday June 16
    Registration and tech starts at SRCA Dragstrip Great Bend Kansas at 9:00 followed by racing from 3-9 Sunday June 17
    Drive day Monday June 18
    Racing at Heartland Motorsports Park Topeka Kansas 9am-3pm Tuesday June 19
    Racing from 3pm -9pm at Ozark Raceway Park Rogersville MO Wednesday June 20
    Drive day Thursday June 21
    Racing 9am -3pm at Thunder Valley Raceway Noble Oklahoma Friday June 22
    Racing at SRCA Dragstrip Great Bend KS 3pm-9pm followed by awards ceremony

  2. #2

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Now that the event is over, I thought I should do a short write-up...

    I ran my son's 89 Daytona with a 3.5L V6 bottom-end, 6g75 heads and a turbo. This setup (minus the 75 heads) used to be in my '87 Shadow, but I want to go bigger with the Shadow...

    The Daytona really wasn't ready when we left. The engine had been rebuilt and only had a few minutes of run time and maybe 3-miles of driving on it. And the alternator wasn't charging. On the drive out to Great Bend we stopped for the night in Topeka and a parts store had a new alternator in stock... I talked to the guy and he put the new alternator on their tester so we could confirm what it took to get the Mitsu alternator to charge...

    During the drive the truck started sporadically making a noise that was more than a little concerning, but every time we stopped I could not replicate it in a parking lot... from the driver's seat, it sounded like it was coming from the alternator/fan area. We looked for a garage open late on a friday, but little success. One truck repair place was "open", but nobody seemed to be around and by that point the truck was no longer making the noise...

    Saturday we get to the track and I start diagnosing the alternator. With help from James Goldman (he helped me last year and this year he was co-pilot for a Honda CRX running this year), we guessed that the junkyard alternator was bad... I swapped in the new one and we were charging!

    First pass the car was getting lean and popping, ran a 14.3. On the return road, the car had died completely. Some quick diagnostics indicated that the fuel pump was not coming on. I was able to directly wire the fuel pump to the battery to get back to the pits. All the fuses were good. Opened up the fuse box (from a 90's Ford) and found the crimp for wire from the fuse to the fuel pump relay had shaken loose.... Crimping a new end on and things are good.

    During this time a 9 second car crashed big time and shut the track down for a couple hours... Time to go over everything...

    Looking at the log file the car was hitting 18psi despite my efforts to turn the boost controller down. Also, the MS2 was trying to drive the injectors to 107% duty cycle... Air-fuel information in the log file was garbage, need to figure that out... Time to pull the boost controller out and hook the wastegate up directly. Need to get the car to a safe baseline...

    Looking at the tires, the front end was toed in pretty badly, in trying to undo that I noticed that the driver's side tire was very close to making contact with the strut brace for the spring despite having a spacer.... Hammered the brace to get more clearance. Got the toe set better. Intended to look at this more during the week, but never did...

    Track was about to go live again and I considered making another pass, but it was getting late and I was out energy... Also, idle vacuum was rather low (~16-17 in-Hg,) not too surprising since the engine was not really broken-in yet... I would rather get some miles on the engine before beating on it too much...

    Headed back to the hotel to get some rest before tomorrow's drive...

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor Ondonti's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Sounds as bad as several of my racing attempts regarding level of testing beforehand plus things not being "done"...yet you have to drive track to track now!!! Even that simple toe problem ignored could eat your tires up between tracks.
    1992 Duster 3.0 The Junkyard- Now - Megasquirt II/Extra. OEM 10:1 3.0 n/a.
    - Old - 11.5@125 22psi $90 Stock 3.0 Junk Motor - 516whp 519wtq 20psi 91 oct built 3.0 stock n/a computer
    1994 Spirit 3.0 - 12.3@113 15 psi - Daily Holset He341 280whp 304ft/lb @10psi
    1994 Spirit 3.0 a670 - Wife's - Disassembled
    1990 Spirit 3.0 E.S. 41TE
    1993 Spirit 3.0 E.S. 41TE
    1994 Duster 3.0 A543
    1990 Lebaron Coupe 2.5 T1 31TH
    1981 Starlet KP61 Potential driver, 1981 Starlet KP61 Parts, 1983 Starlet KP61 Drag
    1998 Dodge 12v Cummins 47re 4x4 4dr longbed

  4. #4

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Day 2, Drive day to go from Great Bend to Topeka. On the way out of town I stopped for fuel. My wife and daughter were a little ways behind and missed me pulling into the station. They turned around and came back and I missed them pulling in to get fuel. Not horrible since the car stalled at the first stop light... Cranked slow and wouldn't start.

    Pushed it to a side street and started investigating... Battery cable was loose so tightened it down and the car immediately started cranking better and fired off quickly... Had I fixed the problem or was time masking it? We will see. By that point my wife showed up and off we went...

    The drive to the first checkpoint was smooth and uneventful. I was trying to very the speed and gear since the engine was still green...

    At the first checkpoint I text the picture to my son since I am driving his car... He replied that he was glad to see her running! Later he mentioned taking my car to get fuel... (I got the impression it was "revenge"...)

    It was about lunch time, so we found a convenient restaurant before we hit the road again... About an hour into the next stretch the car started getting hot. Not sure if was just the nature of the car or signs of a problem I started looking for some shade. Non to be found and the temp gauge was ticking up higher so a wide shoulder in the sun would have to do.

    The car was definitely boiling over... Refilling the radiator there was a trickle of coolant out the bottom... Great... I through in a bottle of stop leak and topped off the coolant hoping to make it to the next town/shade... Partial luck. A few miles down the road we found a church with an empty parking lot a few trees to provide some shade... Preliminary inspection looks like the leak is coming from the thermostat area... Could be the thermostat gasket or one of a couple O-rings. The exhaust manifolds were too hot for me to get my hand in there, so I decided to shotgun parts...

    No parts stores. Googling my daughter found some about 20 minutes away.

    Off we go in the truck. The store had a few things I wanted, but it didn't have the thermostat or O-rings. They made a couple calls and searched there database and found a store 15-minutes down the road that had a lower temp thermostat and a water pump with gaskets and O-ring. Off we go. Interestingly, this parts store was closer to the car than the one we originally went to...

    Once he got back, the car was cooler now, but the sun had shifted enough to get rid of the little bit of shade I had had... Feeling around it really felt like the thermostat housing was the source of the leak, however the gasket (rubber gasket around the perimeter) was perfect. Feeling some more and found a trail from the rear heater hose connection. The O-rings were sketchy when I rebuilt the engine, but I couldn't find replacements then... Luckily the water pump gasket set had ONE (the engine takes 2) of the correct O-ring. Downside, I had to pull the distributor and a few things to get to the bolt that holds the pipe in place...

    With everything buttoned back up, I started adding coolant. No leaks, but not nearly enough coolant added. Drove it across the street and added more coolant... no leaks. Drove it the next place I could pull off and added more coolant. Repeated that a few more times before it stopped going down... Success...

    Drove a few more hours and stopped for fuel in Council Grove Kansas... As I fueled the car I noticed that there was a Dodge dealer next door... (both of those details are significant...) Continuing on we get probably 5 miles outside town before I suddenly realize my wife is no longer behind me... Just then I get a call from my daughter. The truck won't go into gear and they are on a hill! I double back an find some people already helping and getting ready to get her off the road! I found a convenient park out of the way. By the time got there they had her backed into a farm field access road.

    BIG thanks to them for helping her out! They were just random strangers that happened by and saw somebody in need of help...

    My wife and daughter hop in the Daytona with me and we drive back to the town we passed and stop at the gas station. The lady there helped us find a tow truck company. While I went with the tow truck driver, my wife and daughter got us a room at the local hotel.

    As it happens, the driver was the owner of a local repair shop and the former diesel tech at the Dodge dealer... He said, he would do the work BUT right now he has a lot of vehicles in line... (sign of a good shop. The guy knew is stuff. ) He thought the dealer would be able to get us in sooner... When we got to the truck we cranked it up and confirmed no connection between the engine and transmission... likely a grenaded clutch... He recommended we make sure and replace the flywheel with the clutch...

    Eva and I debated what next... She didn't really want all three of us in the Daytona (without AC)... for the rest of the event. Her first preference was to just wait for the truck to be done. My guess that under ideal conditions the truck would be a couple days unless somebody just happened to have a clutch (w/flywheel) in stock... (it turned out that it would need more...) I would rather continue on!

    A little googling and calling and we found an Enterprise car rental about 40 minutes away and confirmed an available car... That would come on the next day...

    What a day. when the trip started, I expected to battle issues with the Daytona and I did. Issues with the truck blind-sided me... On the plus side, the Daytona was still running fine and we had a comfortable place to sleep...

  5. #5
    turbo addict
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    omaha ne

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Any more updates? did you finish?

  6. #6

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Day 3: Started the day stuck in Council Grove Kansas. After the short debate, we packed up and headed south to get rental car... Then turned around and headed north to resume the official route...

    It was about noon when we finally arrived at the track. With some from help from Eva I got the car unloaded and the slicks bolted on. Tweaked the MegaSquirt calibration to add fuel in the upper RPM band. Went for a pass, it was getting lean again at the upper RPM band and popping so I was short shifting the whole way down the track... Ran a 13.7@10? (for get how fast.) better but not what I was looking for.

    Reviewing the log file, boost was till trying to climb to 18psi... Connecting the wastegate directly to intake pressure had not reduced this at all... Looks like it is time to open up the wastegate and clip the spring some... On top of that the shifter was not feeling right... I was guessing that I had either lost a bushing or broken an end. It was going into gear. Probably should have looked at this right then, but I was eager to get back on the road...

    Pack up and start heading to the exit when I realize my wife was not right behind me. I give her a minute and no sign. I double back to find some bystander trying to get a 2" thick piece of asphalt as big as your face off of the front drivers side tire! The parking lot was recently resealed and she had parked in some crack sealer that was not fully cured... As soon as she tried to drive off it pulled up a MONGO piece of tarmac!

    With that sorted out we were back on our way. I was being VERY gentle going into 1, 3 and 5. They did not feel good going in, but never failed to go into gear.

    Other than that the trip was uneventful. The car was really starting to feel better until I pulled into the parking spot at the hotel... I shifted to reverse to straighten out, then first to pull forward. No first gear! Couldn't get it into any gear... Signaled to my wife and daughter and we pushed the car into the parking spot put the trailer in the spot next to the car. It was late and tomorrow the racing starts a 3 so I opted to deal with the shifter cable issue in the morning. Middle of the night I wake-up and have some thoughts on how I might be able fix the cable if I can't find a replacement...

  7. #7

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Day 4: Grab a quick breakfast before my wife and I head out the local harbor freight to get some safety wire and other tools.

    First up, See if I can fix the shifter cable because I could not find one nearby in stock... As I start pulling the turbo downpipe to get access to the cable I noticed the exhaust pipe exit (side of the car) was sitting a little funny. I was more annoyed by this than anything but I should have paid more attention to that...

    I could pop it back on by snaking my hand down past the downpipe, but there was no way to put the safety wire on to keep it on required better access. That actually went fairly smoothly, but getting the V-band clamps back on the downpipe has been a pain... Lots of contorting and swearing but I did get it back on.

    Next I turned my attention to wastegate. Pulling it out went smoothly, but opening it up proved problematic. At some point in the past I had lost one of the allen headed bolts and replaced it with a button headed version... Problem with them is that they have a tendancy to round out the hole for the allen wrench and sure enough I stripped it out. Again, some cursing when I noticed one of the multiple places you could hook the vacuum port too was missing it's plug! That explains why boost was stuck at 18psi... I don't have any plugs that would work in it, but I do have some epoxy putty. So I epoxied the port shut. That should fix that issue, right. For those that are worried that the epoxy will be blown out or can't handle the heat, one of the coolant tubes has a port sealed with the same type of epoxy and it has been fine for 3+ years...

    I always expect a hotel to be a little concerned about somebody disassembling their car in the hotel parking lot, but if they were, I did not hear about it... (during the awards, they mentioned a couple people rebuilding their transmission in the parking lot!)

    It is was nearly noon, so I went in to get cleaned up. My wife wanted to go to Cracker Barrel for lunch. After lunch and a quick nap, we headed to the Ozark. Got there a little on the late side, but I did get a pit spot in the shade! The owner came by to thank people for coming! Fantastic welcome!

    Got the car unpacked and slicks bolted on and started to head to the staging lanes. Shifting into 2 was VERY difficult. I quickly confirmed, during the drive here I had melted the cable. At some point the exhaust shifted slightly and made contact with the selector cable... I worked it back and forth and loosened it up. On to race. Now I had been warned that the shutdown road was short at this track so I was wary from the start (I should also mention that the brakes on the car were getting better, but they were not what I am used to....) So I do a burnout the line-lock was holding better, but still not great. Stage and launch, the car is actually feeling pretty good and not overboosting. It does get a little lean (~13) at the top-end, but no where as lean as before.

    As I get to the top end of the track I see the car next to me get on it's brakes pretty hard! So I do the same fearing a short shutdown area... Nope, I think they were trying to tweak there time for their index class... Oh well, I can circle around and make another pass. Grab second gear for the turn around and nope. the cable had popped off again.... After contemplating the options, I accept a tow back to the pits. Technically, this is a "violation" of the rules, but I am not going to win my class and I would rather make the repairs in the pits in shade with all my tools...

    While I start getting access to the shifter cable, my daughter went to get the time slip. Ran a 13.4@80! Best so far and would have been better if I had not braked... How much better, no clue... Onto the shifter cable. I cut out much of the safety wire work from earlier to try and do better. A fellow racer offered me a coathanger to try, I just could not get in there well enough to bend it up... So I stayed with the safety wire, but did it neater, tighter and added a couple loops try and keep it from sliding off again. It was getting dark and so I turned on the underhood lighting (led truck bed lights.) I checked my handy work and notice that for first the cable end break is open fairly wide... Talking it over with fellow racers, I decide to try and keep to 2&4. Later I would add 5 because of some interstate stretches...

    While I was doing this, my daughter and wife were trying to locate a cable locally and confirmed what I was finding, none in stock and 2-3 days to get one in. They then start looking near the next track. Found an Autozone that could have it in the morning. (the store is ~300 miles away, but they can get it!) Then my wife went out to find some material to try and keep the heat away from the cable. She found some sleeve material that looked like the fiberglass wrap material and was coated in something, silicone I think. We ended up cutting it long ways and safety tying it to the cable.

    Again the V-band clamp was a complete pain. Ended up taking three of us this time to get it on... Finished up just after the track closed... No chance for a second run... Oh well, the car is continuing get better.

    Time to go back to the hotel. Starting in 2nd wasn't horrible. Reving the engine before I jump to 4th made it sound like I was trying to race... But the car was holding together.

    During the night I had one of my few vivid dreams that I could remember in the morning... Two parts to it (not going into the details since they would not make sense to anybody other than me...) But it was a turning point for me and my attitude. Also, the car now has a new name. My son had named it after a character in a book that every time things were going well, would do something to sabotage that... (how it felt with the issues this time and prior events...) The new name gave me a new sense of the car...

    My son is not going to be happy about me renaming is car... Oh well...

  8. #8

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Day 5: This was a drive day to Oklahoma. We debated some possible strategies. My daughter suggested they could zoom ahead and follow the quickest route, pick up the cable and return. That would be lot of driving. A couple other options were tossed around, but my gut said the car would make it... So we continued with them following me. The only tough event was the rain that forced us slower because of some HEAVY ponding of water... Then the resulting multiple accidents that had the traffic down to a crawl. This was the point that the repeated starting in second was a MAJOR pain. I stuck with the plan, but it was tempting not too...

    Once we got through the traffic things speed up. My wife and got seperated going through the accident scenes and I got a call asking how far ahead of them was I because they had not seen me, but expected to once they got off the interstate... Off the interstate? I missed my exit! I was making great time, but headed in the wrong direction... Ouch... Got turned around and met them at what on the directions was not listed explicitly as a check-point, but called out like it was... I grabbed a picture there and according to my daughter several other did as well. Some even ad libed more umm, "interesting" pictures with the giant rooster...

    That was the extent of the interesting events for the drive. the car behaved herself... We got to the parts store and picked up the cable and headed to the hotel. I debated working on the car at the hotel, but decided to wait till the next day and do it at the track...

    Day 6: Thunder Valley. I got to the track earlier than usual. In fact I found out that they have been having daily driver's meetings. I knew about the one on the first day but had been unaware of any others... Oh well. Started taking the car apart to replace the shifter cable. In the mean time my wife was running to the parts stores looking for additional heat shielding material... The swap of the cable went pretty smoothly and while I was waiting, I decided it was time to change the oil (I actually had changed the filter a couple days before, but not the oil. You could see the metal in it from the engine break-in...

    Unfortunately, my wife had little success with finding any heat shield material... So we reused some of what I had on the old line plus some of stuff she got before along with some zip ties to hold the cables away from the exhaust ... It was good to have the shifter feeling like normal!

    Warmed up the car and headed to the staging lanes. The burn-out seemed better, the line lock seemed to be holding better. Pulled a 1.9 60', best so far... Then ran a 13.349@105.82. Best so far... Since I was in an index class I knew I had no chance of winning, so no sense in trying to whip the car to an even better time... The key prize for me was completing the week. Time to pack up... Yesterday's drive was 300 miles, todays was ~360miles and we were getting a later start...

    If I knew what was about to come for a fellow racer, I would have delayed our leave. The next morning I was looking through Facebook and found out that the white Honda CRX blew a headgasket... I was bummed that I had not stuck around and helped out... oh well, no way to know ahead of time...

    This drive was so uneventful that I really don't remember much from it other than the checkpoints. When we left we thought that we would probably have to stop along the way. We made such good time that we abandoned that plan and went to the reserved hotel in Great Bend.

    The car was really coming into it's own. Idle vacuum had started at ~16-18 in-Hg, but was now >20 in-Hg! It was really running good.

  9. #9

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Day 7: Greatbend Kansas.

    Racing started at 3pm, so we opted to relax some and start debating the return strategy. I didn't mention this before, so let me fill in some details about the truck's ('02 Dodge 2500 with a Cummins and 6-sp) status. Last I mentioned, the truck's clutch was TOAST. I later got a call that in addition to clutch problems the truck would also need an input shaft and a bell housing. The exploding clutch had done a lot of damage... They had located both parts. The input shaft would be ~$200 and the bell housing $450. (I would have guessed the prices would be the other way around...) <deep breath> Ok, let's get it done. Should be done by Friday...

    Thursday (I think) I get a call, the transmission had had an internal issues. It was why the clutch exploded... The dealership did some calling around and were recommending a rebuilt transmission... I don't remember the exact price but ~$3200... OUCH <more deep breaths...> Ok, lets get it done.... Also it would be 6+ days till they got the transmission...

    Ok, so we needed a new strategy to get home... tossed around several ideas. All hopping into the Daytona. Driving the rental car home and keeping it for the return trip. Driving the rental car home and turning it in. Driving the Daytona and rental car home with the drag week trailer on the tow dolly... Lots of discussion, but ultimately we decided to leave the Daytona at the track with the trailers and retrieve them when we returned with the truck... (fall back plan was to see if a local racer could hold them until we could return.)

    Talked to the manager of the track and he was fine with us leaving them and told us where to stash them to be out of their way... We have a plan...

    On to the racing, this burnout seemed among the best so far. The line lock held and I forgot for a second that I would need to release it! The 2.0 60' didn't show it, but I think I just needed to launch harder... Ran a 13.405@105.32 (again this is on ~5psi of boost.) So not bad. I contemplated going again, but there was nothing to be gained... The car and I had survived the week. It was now getting consistent and dialed in. The one issue left was why the wide-band was not recording correctly in the log file. I tried adding some grounds, but no change. I think that the wire the MS is hooked to is outputing a narrow band O2 signal... Have to look at that once I get back to the car.

    For the first time all week I spectated the racing... It was good to relax and watch other race...

    Shortly after I turned in my timeslip they announced that a storm is coming. Racing would end early and bracket racing was canceled. They would be opening up two building for us to put cars in since there was a chance of hail... Ok, I got the Daytona in and Eva got the rental car in.

    Dinner was ready a little while later and we spent some time relaxing and talking as the storm raged outside.

    After the storm was mostly over we walked to the other building to get our cars out. My wife was furious for leading us the wrong way and her getting her feet wet. We got her car out quickly and she walked back the way she thought we should have walked and apologized... The other way was far wetter...

    It is amazing the size of dust cloud a 3.5L V6 will make with a side-exit exhaust pointing down to the ground...

    The last chapter of the story is yet to happen. On July 3rd I got a call that the truck was ready... Started looking a plane tickets. Originally I was going to have my son go with me, but his job would only allow certain days off and the window for cheap tickets was closed. New plan my wife would go with me... But I wanted to double check with my son... Overnight the price of the tickets went up by 50%... Go a day later and they were cheaper, but my wife already had plans then...

    New plan, my daughter would go with me. So Wednesday my daughter and I fly into Kansas City, MO. Hopefully we can Uber or Lyft to Council Grove Kansas. Then drive to Great Bend Kansas to pick up the Daytona. Then head towards home...

    Hopefully things go to plan, but when have they?

  10. #10

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Ok, here are some of the pictures...

    This is the 9 second car that crashed. The guy was giving away parts off of it to racers in need.

    This the first checkpoint picture that I sent my son...

    The rental car that replaced the truck...

    The broken shifter cable end

    My best 1/4 mile pass of the week

  11. #11
    turbo addict
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Lincoln, Nebraska

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    That is one heck of a journey! Glad to hear the car finished. I hope the last portion goes smoothly too!
    “If the people of the nation understood our banking and monetary system, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.” -Henry Ford

  12. #12

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    So Last Wednesday in the early AM (~5am) my daughter and I were dropped off at the Indianapolis airport. The first potential snag popped up... We were in the security line when my daughter went to get her license out and realized she likely left it in the van that my wife just drove off in...

    As we move up in line I contemplated my options. Can I get her through security without ID? If I can't do I go without her or not? Non-refundable tickets so likely I would go without her and have my wife swing back to the airport... I would note that my estimation was that there was not sufficient time for my wife to swing back to the airport, get the license, get through security and make our flight... We get up to the officer and I hand her my license and both our boarding passes. She asks about my daughter's ID and I mention something like she did have it (trying to imply that she might not have one...) Next question was age... 16. The officer looked over my daughter, then the boarding passes and we were through security...

    Then begins the dance of getting shoes off, laptops and tablets out, etc. In our rush we forgot to get liquids out... I only thought about this as my daughters bag seemed to be delayed in the scanner... The two tech's seem to have a short conversation before sending her bag on... Now the dance of shoes back on and everything stowed. We get to the gate just as boarding started. Time to spare, but not much.

    Flight one was to Detroit. A delay long enough to grab some breakfast before the flight to Kansas City. Oddly, both flights were on Delta, but they had a different selection of movies. I started a movie on the first flight expecting that I could finish it on the second flight... No such luck. I got halfway through two different movies... Oh well.

    Get to Kansas City and try out the Uber app for the first time. Went smoothly and the driver showed up in <5 minutes. I was a little concerned that we may have trouble finding somebody who would drive us 2 hours into another state... No such problem... He said he would have driven us to Indianapolis if we requested... $150 and 2 hours later we were at Bolton Dodge in Council Grove, KS... Then began a call to my bank, I hadn't thought about the daily spending limit on my debit card...

    All this went smoothly. The transmission was a little "stiff" on the shifting... Not sure why, from the factory they would NEVER have been this stiff... Why would a reconditioned transmission be so hard to get into gear. It really didn't want to go into first, second, or reverse. (the other gears were "easier" since we were moving but not as easy as I am used to...)

    My daughter went into Subway to get lunch for us while I drive around trying to loosen up the transmission and break-in the clutch. By the time we get on the road the trans is shifting well enough that I am not super concerned.

    We get about an hour down the road before my daughter takes over some of the driving. The plan is for her to drive the truck for an hour or two after picking up the Daytona to give the clutch time to break-in. She has limited experience with manual trans and the truck in specific so now is the time to get her up to speed. She takes to it well. Once close to the track I called my contact at the track. He points us by a combine that is parked in the staging lanes (not where he would really like it.) There is enough room to get by, but not by much.

    First question is will I have to jump the Daytona after two weeks. Before the trip there seemed to be sporadic battery drains. I thought I had them fixed, but I had not tested it. Hop in and the car cranks to life. Very good sign! Load up the tow dolly and I take it out (my daughter was unsure about the close maneuvering need. ) Then come back and drive the Daytona out. We are good to go!

    My daughter leads. We get about 1.5-2 hours down the road and on the interstate and I notice the car is getting hot. Actually I notice the car is getting lean first. I think there is a temperature compensation table that doesn't go high enough, so the AF gets lean... I call my daughter to let her know, but a bump must have shifted my thumb enough to call my mom instead. The car is loud so hearing the other person is dicy, so I just start talking about the car getting hot and needing to find a place to pull over right away before realizing I miss dialed! I quickly hang up and call my daughter, luckily she noticed me slowing down is ready to pull over. Good thing, because the car was getting lean enough to stumble and it stalls as I coast in just before some construction zone signs... (we later sent out a group text letting everybody know that everything is fine now...)

    Turns out the signs just talking about a rest stop that was closed and limited shoulder for that area. If I had known that I would have just pushed the cones aside and coasted into the rest area. I really don't like doing a whole lot on the shoulder of an interstate... Especially since many people are slow to get over.

    It was about the point I planned on putting the Daytona on the tow dolly so I didn't investigate the problem, but my guess is the car doesn't like 75+MPH while towing... During RMRW we never spent an extended amount of time at highway speeds, but at slower speeds the car was fine. I did confirm that the radiator was still full...

    Hot the car didn't want to restart (too lean I would guess) so we had to hand winch it on... Took a while in the heat (~93-95F, maybe hotter on the road) and sun, but we got it on. Looking in the bed of the truck I couldn't find the tie down straps, well not the new ones... Luckily I packed the old ones, but they have been prone to slipping off... So every so often we had to pull off the interstate and reset them... ( would find the new straps when we got home, buried under a pile of other straps...)

    By the end of the day we got back to Kansas City. That was my goal so we started looking for a hotel to call it a night at... The next day was the usual stop every so often to reset the tire straps. We ended up getting home about 5:30pm. Plenty of time to get the car unloaded.

    My son fired up the car for the first time in the new configuration. Big smile came over his face at the sound of exhaust note as it fired to life and and he drove it off the tow dolly!

    Could I have driven the Daytona home from Great Bend? I think so, but I would have had to go slower to not over tax the cooling system. My son is taking advantage of a day off from work to go down to a local U-pull-it and find an air dam for the car... My understanding is Daytona's are supposed to have them (or at least benefit significantly from them...) Hoping that might help with the higher speed cooling...

    Thus completes our RMRW saga! Going into it my wife was talking about taking next year off. Despite the issues with the truck, she has changed her tune and is talking about doing it next year! It is a long hard slog, but in the end it is a fantastic time! Great people to meet! I am working on convincing her to race next year!

    On the last day we spent some time looking at what everybody was doing for a tow rig. We are talking about changing our up, but unsure. I think she came away understanding that our 2500 w/ Cummins & 6-sp truck is not a bad option. If we did not have a kid going to college next year, we might get a newer truck (ie. 3500 w/Cummins). We have also considered a newer 1500 and get a 60/70's Dodge 2-ton to build into a tow vehicle! (I think I could make the initial purchases for around even money...)

    PS. For why my wife's attitude is changing I think there are several factors.
    1) She loved looking around and talking to people. (not hard to get a car guy to talk about his car even when he is elbow deep in fixing a problem!)
    2) She has noticed a difference in our kids after participating in events like this. (more confidence and ability. We want to start a ministry around car and teens in a few years.)
    3) It may have been "expensive", but everything survived...
    4) She loves family time even if it is stranded on a deserted road in the middle of Kansas on a hot day!

  13. #13

    Re: Rocky Mountain Race Week 2018

    Final note, I would like to convince the RMRW folks to bring back the Sport Compact class, but to do that I think I would need a lot of people contacting them and expressing interest in bringing back the Sport Compact class... The index class that I was in this year just isn't my thing. To have a shot at winning you need to make a bunch of passes to try and get that magic 10.00/11.00/12.00/13.00/14.00 pass.

    The top 12 people in the 13.0 index class were all in the 13.0 range... I would rather rip off the best pass I can and move on than make a bunch of passes and trying judge when to brake to get a 13.000...

    So if this type of event interests you please contact RMRW and request them to bring back the Sport Compact class.


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