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Graham Coles Mallory Diary

Firstly Tony Allen has asked us to say thanks to all the drivers and team members who helped get Adrian Chapmans car back on the trailer after it sufferred in his pitwall accident.

To continue with Graham report - My Mallory weekend started the way it was set to finish - badly!

Pushing the car off the trailer Dewi noticed the brake disks on the drivers side rear squeaking. We thought it was nothing but on closer inspection the rear stub axle was loose, so The Gunn man stripped it tightened it and all was well.

We had actually ended the last Pembrey race with a pretty bad misfire, although no-one would believe us! So this was the first chance we had of trying the engine with some new ECU maps I put together in the 3 week break. I had also brought along a weaker waste gate spring intended to produce less sudden boost so as to try and calm the car down from the wild animal that had thrown itself in the Silverstone straight wall in it's last wet outing - Neither change worked. The car still had a bad misfire at 5k RPM and the thump from sudden boost remained although the misfire helped calm it a little. This made for some exiting moments especially when we were on slicks in the changeable conditions.

Our nearest rival Peter Williams had cunningly chosen wets which proved the right choice in the wet-dry-wet-dry track. Sitting in the collection area next to Ginger Marshal, I saw he was on dry tyres too and I smiled when the hot sun broke through the clouds. I was gutted though when it started to rain with only minutes to go to our session. It did start to dry though but that just seemed to make things worse for me as I wasn't sure where the grip was - leading to a few leery moments. The rain started again just as accelerated down the main straight on a hot one - only to come across Adrian's stricken ADR and a frantically waving Marshal.

The upshot of the session was that we qualified 2nd just behind Peter and marginally ahead of Lee, Ginger and Huw !

The race was much better though with no misfiring at all on the opening laps. I've just got to work out now which of the changes improved things, so we can isolate the fault and cure it permanently !

The start of the race was great for me as we were alongside Peter and just ahead of Leigh and Ginger. Without being too immodest it was probably one of my best starts off the line, and glancing across I could see Peter start to get bogged down. Not sure about the other guys though so I couldn't hang around and went as quick as I could to try and build a lead. I saw Leigh in the mirror quite easily given the Nemesis's red livery and learned that Peter had actually been passed by both Leigh and Ginger. I
felt I was beginning to escape these guys when, down the pit straight there was almighty bang from the engine bay and a sound like an exploding balloon. the car lost power but all oil, water and voltage readings were good so I pressed on and assumed - correctly as it happened - that the turbo pipe had blown off. Nevertheless, this build was based on quite a high compression (for a turbo engine) so I still had a fair bit of power without the turbo.

Despite some token resistance though I couldn't hold back Peter who had now passed Ginger and Leigh, and I had a birds eye view of Peter bullying Keith's little Audi V8 at the Shaws hairpin - even diving up the grass bank to pounce on him on the exit. I actually thought I could pinch the lead back for a minute there but Peter managed to gather it all up, get down off the bank, and stay ahead - just - albeit a little muddier ! ....

Leigh was next in the mirrors and I think I kept the position for around 2 laps in amongst the other cars before he gobbled me up on the pit straight approaching Gerrards. (That corner is simply awesome by the way and a superb measure of the cornering capability of any car).

Luckily, I think Ginger and Huw were caught up the other cars and we were able to hold that position to the end of the race.

So, as it turned out, we finished 3rd and nabbed the lap record on the 3rd(?) lap. Also a bonus - as Leigh is not registered (thanks Leigh) we got 2nd in Class, to still be in touch on the championship points table.

Not a brilliant result for us, but then it could have been a lot worse.

.......now...when shall I play that joker ?????

Kind Regards, Graham 

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