NLS Racing VIR-South Race Report:
After our big win at Road Atlanta, we made little to no changes to our primary car. Maintenance and a few odds and ends. Nothing else needed. The 2nd car got a few updates and was ready to rock. A win at VIR has been our goal since day 1 and has remained elusive as ever. We've been so close a few times only to end in heartbreak.
A poor starting position wasn't gonna hurt us, as we had 12hrs to fight to the front. It only took 20mins and we had the lead with our 240SX. Everything going as planned. The 2nd car was doing good, settling into around 8th position. Unfortunately, it was short-lived. The 300ZX wasn't able to change gears, something inside the bellhousing went out. We tried some diagnoses, bleed the clutch master, slave, etc. but all looked good externally. Whether it was the throwout bearing, pressure plate, or something else, we won't know until we get it apart.
We made the decision to park it and focus on the 240 as we were still leading. That too was short-lived. On a restart, the 2nd place car decided to try to win the race with only 11hrs remaining. They dive-bombed us into a corner and jacked up our RF suspension. 15-20 mins behind the wall to reset toe due to a bent steering knuckle, we made it back out somewhere around 20th. 10 laps down.
Still lots of time left to claw our way to the front. We clicked off laps for the next 5hrs, working our way up to the 8-9th spot. All the while building excess pressure in our cooling system. A problem that we have been dealing with on and off for a while now. We pitted a few times to bleed the pressure but nothing was working. We decided to call it and use the remainder of the race a test.
We swapped radiators, caps, hoses, thermostats, pretty much any part of the cooling system we could get our hands-on. All to no avail. We probably could have finished with what we had, but we threw in the towel and saved the tires, brakes, and car itself. No need to burn everything up just to finish at the back.
So we cracked a few beers and watched the rest of the race from the bleachers. Pretty cool to see the Camaro's red hot exhaust glowing at night. It might have been a bad day of racing, but sure beats a good day at work. Friends and family hanging out, enjoying the company and some racing, what more could a guy ask for? Thanks to all that make this happen.
We got a lot of time to figure it out before we return to CMP in June.