Yesterday, all of the craziness that is One Lap of America met in South Bend to begin an amazing 7 day adventure. For the first event, which was the wet skid pad, James took the wheel because he had done a similar event before. What we learned though, is that this event is much more difficult than we initially expected. We were humbled pretty quickly when both a Toyota Sienna minivan, and a stock Evo X crushed us. There was plenty of time to think though, as we trekked from South Bend, to outside of Pittsburgh. Fortunately, I think that all of us on the team agree that the track is our bread and butter. There is a lot of ground for us to make up this morning as we get started at Pitt Race. Finishing well today puts us at the front of the pack tomorrow at Palmer. That is important because the transit tomorrow night is a long one at 600+ miles. Enjoy some pictures from our time at Tire Rack in South Bend.
I was lucky enough to have a Saturday morning free of responsibility on the same day as the finish of One Lap of America (henceforth OLOA). Naturally, I made an express trip back to South Bend to see the Dry Skidpad finish. While I was there, I got to see some pretty exciting results, talk to a lot of interesting people, and gain a full understanding for how much work/luck/talent it takes to not only finish, but actually be competitive. While those competing for the overall win have a tremendous budget, there is competition throughout. Some of these teams and their cars have been competing annually for years. The fact that people keep coming back tells me that we are in for an adventure.
Here are just a few shots from the event. It was pretty soggy at the beginning to be considered a dry event, but things cleared up later in the day.
Here are just a few shots from the event. It was pretty soggy at the beginning to be considered a dry event, but things cleared up later in the day. Carrera GT Spotted!! I love this car. Sadly, this car/driver combo wasn't exactly competitive.
In February 2014, I did something foolish.... I sold off the RPF1 wheels and tires. At the time, I didn't have big race plans. I didn't need a spare set of wheels with dedicated summer tires. Whoops. Lesson learned. I won't make that mistake again.
Once springtime came around, I wrangled up my father-in-law and a friend from the area to pull the wrap. It only took us about 12 hours to finish. My friend that helped made the sunburn analogy. He was right, it was strangely satisfying. In a hilarious twist of fate, he burned himself pretty badly with a heat gun that day while we were working. The next week, the burn provided him endless entertainment of skin to peel.
Naturally, the only thing left to do was make a joke about pork rinds.
I convinced the rest of my Subaru family that I wasn't buying another Subaru. This car was the only option for what I was looking to do. What that was, I didn't know. The only thing that I was for sure of was that I needed a car that could make 450whp RELIABLY! My wife asked me, "for what?" or "what are you going to do with that much power?" At the time, I didn't have the answer. It didn't matter because I got started anyway.
The previous owner appreciated form over function. The car was equipped with outrageously wide 18x10.5" +15mm Enkei RPF1 wheels on 265/35R18 Federal RS-R tires.
While the setup looked awesome, the car drove like crap on the highway. I needed a functional daily driver. Predictably, the tires had no grip in the temperatures consistent with a Chicago November. I broke all four tires loose on an on-ramp on the interstate at 60 mph. I knew the car didn't have that much torque. The wheels had to go. In the interim, I bought a set of Rally Armor mudflaps because I figured that they look great and at this tire width, will surely help save the paint on the car.
As soon as we moved into our place in Ohio, I started looking for wheels that I could drive on for the winter. Hooray for the forums! Though the market isn't as vast as what I had come to expect from the Subaru community, it did the job just fine. I was able to make it through the winter without wrapping the car around a telephone pole.
Eventually, spring arrived, and that is when things got really fun...
This website is designed to document all of the hard work that has gone into preparing my 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X GSR for the 2016 Brock Yates' One Lap of America. I purchased the car in the fall of 2013 because I was looking to trade up from my 2005 Subaru WRX. Specifically, I was looking to move to a platform that had both more potential for high horsepower (~450 whp), and also one that was a more comfortable on a race track. I was fortunate to find this car slightly used (6500 miles), and modestly modified by a knowledgable seller. In the 18 months that I have owned this car, it has already seen a substantial transformation. Here is what it looked like when I picked up the car:
The previous owner had the done the following before I purchased:
3M Vinyl Wrap (Matte Gray)
Tomei Titanium Upper Intercooler Pipe
ETS Dump O2 Eliminator Downpipe
Depo Racing Testpipe
Eibach Rear Sway Bar
HKS Hi-Power Catback Exhaust
Grimmspeed 3 Port EBCS
AMS Race Front Motor Mount
Blitz Piping Stopper
AEM Boost Gauge
AEM Wideband O2 Sensor
Coltspeed Strut Bar
Coltspeed Hood Dampers
Tuned by Devin Schultz at Boostin Performance (319AWHP/306AWTQ)
As I had previously owned and modified my WRX before this car, I wasn't nervous at all about buying a modified car. I felt like I had a good understanding of what I was looking for. This has ended up being the perfect platform for what we are trying to do. More updates to follow.