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Caterham Graduates


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#1 SteveA

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 11:28 AM

If anyone is looking for something to do this weekend, Captain Vimes and I are racing in the Caterham Graduates series. It's a double header on Saturday and we are in different classes so there will be four races to watch. Would be good to see some friendly faces for my first race, fingers crossed :)



#2 ChrisS1

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 11:38 AM

Where Steve?

#3 SteveA

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 12:09 PM

Haha forgot that bit, It's at Oulton Park.



#4 ChrisS1

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 01:48 PM

:lol: thumbsup Good luck. Is this your first race?

#5 SteveA

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 01:53 PM

It is, I'm an absolute novice in a very experienced field. So far it's looking like there will be 25 on my grid and I'm the only one who has never raced before. I'm not expecting to do too well, I just want to avoid crashes and if possible not come last :lol:



#6 Zoobeef

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 02:15 PM

I'll be there :D

 

You'e had plenty of practice in your car so I expect you not to be near the back after quali. So the thing I say to myself before every race is "you cannot win the race in the first corner" it makes me concentrate and things start to settle down after the first corner.



#7 rob999

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 03:04 PM

Good luck guys, stay safe this weekend. Steve, I have no doubt youll do well 👍

#8 Captain Vimes

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 10:54 PM

For anyone that comes along, Steve is number 56 in the Sigmax class and Im 117 in the Mega class. Timetable here: https://barc.blob.co...le-v1-um8f1.pdf Driver excuses for coming last... Ive only been to Oulton twice. The first visit ended in a wrecked car following complete brake failure. The second time it snowed and I cant make testing this week. Its fair to say that my experience of the track is limited and its a place that punishes mistakes hard. Oh and I havent managed to sort new tyres so Im on my old used set.... Having said that, Im looking forward to meeting up with the Grads folk and helping/watching Steve at his first ever race!

#9 SteveA

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Posted 18 March 2018 - 01:33 PM

We'll it snowed pretty much all day, bit of a tough day for my first race but I got through it. Getting on frozen grass saw me kissing the armco in race 1, nothing too serious that gaffer tape couldn't sort. In race 2 I just wanted to get through it. To get a signature on my card so took it carefully, didn't finish last so there is that goal achieved. Congratulations to Vimes who managed to get himself on the podium in a very competitive race 1.

#10 ChrisS1

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 08:05 AM

Well done Steve. Bit of a baptism of fire with snow!

#11 Captain Vimes

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 08:42 AM

Congrats on surviving the blizzard conditions Steve and getting your first racing start & finish! Hopefully the next one will be dry and sunny! Mark (zoobeef), good to see you again. Hope you both got back across the pennines safely. I was over the moon with my first podium finish in race 1 especially after the ghosts of last year. I managed to get a clean start from P5 and a nice gap over P4 and then just settled into a safe rhythm keeping an eye on the gap behind to come home in P3. Had some fun passing the back markers and slower classes at the end of the race (3 abreast out of turn 1) but it all ended well and the champagne (cheap fizzy wine) tasted good! Race 2 started in a blizzard. I still cant believe they started the race. It was -1c when I got back to the tow car and the snow had frozen to the windscreen. Not ideal in a race Caterham on AO48s! Anyway I started and finished in P5 (in class) and I was happy to just keep it on the black stuff and have the car in one piece.

#12 C8RKH

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 08:54 AM

It is, I'm an absolute novice in a very experienced field. So far it's looking like there will be 25 on my grid and I'm the only one who has never raced before. I'm not expecting to do too well, I just want to avoid crashes and if possible not come last :lol:

 

Avoiding the crashes is a sure fire way of not coming last!  Field of 25, 4 or 5 crash out on the first lap, and you're in the top 20!  :)   Positive vibes man, positive vibes. 

 

Good luck with the racing, seriously jealous, always wanted to do something like that and even got the wife's agreement, but I'm too much of a lardy arsed bastard right now, though on week 2 of a diet so who knows for next year.

 

Will watch out for your updates and progress.



#13 ChrisS1

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 09:11 AM

Is any of your racing televised? Motorstv seem to have Caterhams on but not sure what categories they show.

#14 SteveA

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 09:40 AM

I think motors TV tends to cover the very top tier of the official Caterham sponsored championship (420R) but ours series isn't televised.



#15 Captain Vimes

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 09:47 AM

Theres live commentary and timing on TSL but its not really the same. There a couple of official Youtube videos collated by the club which give a feel for the Racing. Ill dig them out later (unless Steve has them to hand).

#16 james_ly

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 10:55 AM

Does the car have a heater... too cold for southerners like me!



#17 Captain Vimes

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 11:02 AM

No heater, no windscreen, no doors, not allowed a coat as its not FIA approved. -1 and you have to sit in the assembly area for 20 minutes in the snow waiting to form up on the grid. Nobody ever said British Motorsport was glamorous but it was fooking freezing on Saturday.

#18 SteveA

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 11:38 AM

No heater, no windscreen, no doors, not allowed a coat as its not FIA approved. -1 and you have to sit in the assembly area for 20 minutes in the snow waiting to form up on the grid. Nobody ever said British Motorsport was glamorous but it was fooking freezing on Saturday.

 

Wouldn't be so bad if it was just 20 minutes :(

 

I lost feeling in my fingers while waiting so took my gloves off and stuck a hand into my lid so I could blow hot air on them. Whilst waiting for the final race I kept my skiing gloves on and just handed them to Zoobeef when the pace car rolled in.

 

It just shows how changeable the conditions were, I was second last in my class and my fastest lap was marginally faster than that of the guy who won Kevs class (if he raced at the same time as me he would have easily been 6 seconds faster). An hour between races and it was so much worse.



#19 Captain Vimes

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 01:01 PM

Just looked at the lap times and in the Sigmax class (Steve's class), the lap record was well and truly broken on Saturday by multiple drivers. Which either goes to show the depth of talented drivers in the class OR shows that the weather at Oulton park is always terrible and some how the track conditions (at times) were better this year than previous years...



#20 SteveA

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 03:51 PM

My ultimate pace at the end of a track day is normally pretty good but it takes me time to get there, each lap of the race I was improving but If I'm going to be competitive I need to get up to pace more quickly. Everyone in the top of the table was on the pace by lap 2 and I need to work towards that. I suppose a full day of testing the day before would help enormously.






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