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Caterham Graduate Racing


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#41 Rob3770

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 01:21 PM

I raced bikes a few years ago and loved it until I ran out of money... Very little track time for a great deal of money. I was testing on track and then racing so in the end I ended up just doing the testing on track days. I, like you nearly bought a race car before the VX but decided I wanted a bit of both so a compromise was in order.. I had a 7 in 2015 and much as I loved it, it didn't give me that bit of both, but as a well set up track car.. awesome. Enjoy :-)

#42 Rob3770

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 01:23 PM

I raced bikes a few years ago and loved it until I ran out of money... Very little track time for a great deal of money. I was testing on track and then racing so in the end I ended up just doing the testing on track days. I, like you nearly bought a race car before the VX but decided I wanted a bit of both so a compromise was in order.. I had a 7 in 2015 and much as I loved it, it didn't give me that bit of both, but as a well set up track car.. awesome. Enjoy :-)

#43 Captain Vimes

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 02:45 PM

Thanks Rob.

 

Agreed on the expense side of things. The cost involved is eye watering. I certainly don't expect to be able to race year after year but hope to be able to track and at least get a couple of races in each year.

 

What I don't really understand is how race entry is £430 for 15 mins warm up and 2x 20 minute races. You'd have thought that with so many more drivers than a track day plus the entry fee for spectators plus merchandise sales etc. that the cost to the driver could be a lot lower to make grids bigger. Someone somewhere is making a sh*t load of money from people like me!



#44 Captain Vimes

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 03:15 PM

The pre-season track day at Donington was great albeit wet, cold and very very windy but what a brilliant circuit! I wasn't that excited about the GP loop being added in but it was good practice trying to brake down hill from 100mph into a hair pin on a damp slippery circuit whilst balancing brakes and heel/toe on each down shift. I got it wrong more times than I got it right but I was getting there by the end of the day!

 

Otherwise the craner curves are bloody awesome. Even in less than perfect conditions and with a passenger it can be taken flat in 4th gear in the caterham at (probably) 110mph and you feel the whole car get up on it's toes and moving around, especially while the track was still damp!

 

For me it was an opportunity to see if I could get on track with real racers in a car I haven't driven very much and not completely embarrass myself. Fortunately I did OK (video below). I was able to pass caterhams in the lower classes, keep up with some of the caterhams in my class and overtaken by some in the class above. Whether this will change come proper testing/racing I guess only time will tell!

 

One of the aims of the day was to get friends/family to get into the passenger seat and come out in the car and experience what it's like. So first job was to fit a passenger seat. I modified an old race seat and managed to sort out a spare 6-point harness (Batman - I'll get it back in the car for the next VX day!!)

 

Jobs list:

- rear brake light fuse keeps blowing - I think I've sorted this as the reverse switch wiring uses the same loom and was severed and hanging down under the car!

- lower throttle position to aid heel/toe. Having looked at this since the throttle pedal was set in the closest position while brake pedal was set to middle, which explains why I had to brake on my tip toes just to be able to blip the throttle! Hoping the new position feels better on race day!

- bleed brakes- I got long pedal at Donington

- general race prep & checks

 

Not going to get done before race day (#racing driver excuse):

- corner weighting

- new tyres

 

Video:

 

 

On the day the car ran perfectly. We disconnected the rear ARB as it was wet and it really helped traction. Thanks to Stuwy for coming along and helping out!!!

 

Posted Image

 

 

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#45 SteveA

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 04:56 PM

I have some photos of the correct positions for the brake pedal (in my car at least) for wet and dry H&T. In the wet obviously you don't press the pedal down as far so the pedal itself needs to be lowered to compensate and allow you to H&T. I can send you the pics if you want them?

 

Also I wonder if the thermostat think is just a K series thing as mine deffo has one.



#46 Captain Vimes

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 06:48 PM

Yes please Steve, that would be great. I think the thermostat is an 'old car' thing. In the regs both the k-series and Vauxhall SOHC cars are allowed (advised) to run without thermostat but the newer sigma cars need the stat. Just coming back to weight. The minimum weight for my class is 600kg with fuel, driver etc. Mine was last weighed by the previous owner at 618kg with 100kg driver ballast. So with me in the car I hope to be around 608kg (I'm very slim but the race suit and helmet are at least 2 stone...). If it's much under that then I'll have to get down to McDonald's!

#47 SteveA

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 07:01 PM

Pm me your email and I'll get the photos over to you.

#48 Firthy

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 03:51 PM

Really interesting to hear how your getting on... keep the thread going :)



#49 Captain Vimes

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 05:42 PM

Thanks Firthy. First race this weekend at Oulton Park. Friday will be my first experience of being on track under race rules rather than track day. I get 4x30 minute sessions and plan to maximise my time on track as I've never been to Oulton. Saturday is race day where I get 15 mins warm-up/qualifying and then 2 x 20 minute races. The start is the bit that worries me. I was hoping to have a quiet life in my first race and start at the back of the grid but it's going my to be a mixed grid with mega and super grads lined up in lap time order. I hope I'm not slower than the slowest super grad so might have to start amongst the pack. I'll update after the weekend!

#50 CHILL Gone DUTCH

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 05:44 PM

Is it free entry kev If so I might pop in

#51 Captain Vimes

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 06:32 PM

Testing is free but race is £10 in advance and £15 on the gate.

#52 Firthy

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Posted 14 March 2017 - 05:46 PM

Good luck :) look forward to hearing how you get on.



#53 Captain Vimes

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 09:50 PM

Testing was going really well today but one minor issue.

Can anyone spot what's wrong in this picture?

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#54 leevx2.2

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:05 PM

yes bolt missing from brake servo bracket not good 



#55 Captain Vimes

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:11 PM

Correct. It should have a bush with a split pin holding it in place. Looks like the split pin fell out and the bush dropped into the foot well. I discovered this at shell oil corner which is a hairpin that has an approach of circa 100mph and very little run off, with no way to slow the car down.

#56 Captain Vimes

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:13 PM

It's broke...

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#57 Captain Vimes

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:17 PM

I only managed 6 dryish laps as it was raining all morning. Lap times were dropping nicely (best of 2:01) and I was able to catch and pass others in my class. Off to Halfords tomorrow for some t-cut. I'm sure it'll polish out.

#58 hairy

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:22 PM

OOh sh!t, hope you were OK.



#59 leevx2.2

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:23 PM

Holly sh*t not good you ok Captain  cars can be fixed you must of sh*t yourself ?



#60 Foxy_Jr

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:47 PM

Hope you're OK. Really gutted for you, I can see how much effort you've put in. What's the damage, chassis straight or just moving parts? Really, good to meet you earlier today. Seb's been asking me when I'm getting a 'proper' racing car all day!!




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