First off we would like to thank the wonderful Redline Time Attack staff as well as the Gateway International Raceway staff putting together a great event and keeping us all safe! Secondly a thank you to all of you who came out to support us this weekend- we really do appreciate it. Last but not least, Mark Daddio who piloted our Time attack car to the Victory in The Unlimited AWD class and Overall Grand Champion. Much credit also goes to the various members of the AMS team for countless preparation hours!
As you can imagine it was not a walk in the park, we had some pretty stiff competition and a few nail bitters too. The Gateway International is a pretty “ballsy” track, blind corners and decreasing radius turns with off camber and no minimal run-off space leave no room for error. First casualty of the practice day was the Ackerman Supra in the Modified RWD Street class, the car hit the wall but like a true racer the owner went back home, hammered her out and return the next day to claim the victory in the class. There were some pretty close moments after that, even applause to the driver of the blue NSX for a truly last minute save! Towards the end of the day the track claimed another car when the World Racing Scion Tc piloted by Chris Rado went off to make contact with the wall - luckily he was ok, but the car was not in a state to return to the competition the following day.
The competition day on Sunday started off great, we were making adjustments to the car and were able to get our times down to 1:02:9- which is pretty damn fast (hitting 152 MPH on the front oval section!). The next car was the Top Speed Subaru Impreza GC running in the 1:05s. We were pretty comfortable heading into the 1st time attack session as in the world of racing little bit of a bad luck struck us. While flying down the front oval section at well over 150 MPH and heading into turn one where the car had to slow down to about 70 MPH, the bolts on the throttle body butterfly backed out causing the car to be stuck at wide open throttle!!! The skillful and cold blooded Mark Daddio aborted the turn and continued onto the closed off oval- saving the day! Unfortunately we did not get a timed lap in on that session and the approaching rain begun to worry us as we knew we would not be able to best the 1:05 time posted by the Top Speed impreza on a wet track.
For those who don’t know Redline takes the best lap time of the 2 timed attack sessions, needless to say looked like we were S.O.L. – but hey that’s racing. Luck might have it the rain stopped after a few minutes, cars were let on the track to run circles, and by the time it was our turn to run the track was mostly dry- not ideal but we had a shot.
Final session, the DTM EVO goes on but unfortunately suffers a severe crash ending their day. The session was restarted and we were able to get a timed lap of 1.03.6, which bested the Top Speed Subaru.
Next up is Road Atlanta- we’ll see you guys there.
Once again thanks to everyone who made it out- it’s a great event. I personally had a blast!
Here are a few pictures from the event:
(click on the thumbs for HUGE resolution images)