Tuesday, 22 October 2013

RENN-WAGENS at Cal look Drag Day 12th Oct 2013

The Rennwagens favourite meet of the year by far, why? Because of the no bullshit vibe, this ain't about fancy dress its about fancy bhp, awesome pit camaraderie and the desire for everyone to enjoy what they love best and that's running the 1/4 mile as quick as possible amongst some of the finest Hot air-cooled VWs in the country.

So how did we do? The answer is our club did awesome, 8 cars from the club stable in attendance, three club members netted pbs which we'll get onto later, along with some other very impressive performances both off and on the track.

First of all well done all members for having faith that we'd see some track time, I don't think anyone would have bet on it and certainly with all members in attendance late morning it was still looking a little bleak. The 2 hr drive to the track paid off for us and so hats off to the other racers who braved much greater distances - we salute you!

But like any Rennwagen race meet nothing comes easy and this meet didn't come without its own combination of cruddy luck, blatant blunders and comedy of errors. Steve's 61 was still without a motor as it sat waiting for collection at Cal look Drag Day Sponsor Aircooled performance's workshop a week prior to the event and Steve and Rich (Stinkhound Performance" were patting themselves on the back when on the morning of the event the bug was timed up and singing better than ever, however a gentle roll down the pits to check brakes etc ended in minor catastrophe when he found himself running on three wheels - future mental note for Steve to check wheel nuts properly. This you would think would take some beating, however a few minutes later Mark Palmer arrived with meltdown and asked the question "who's removed my bonnet" the pressure was off Steve, it transpires bonnets make excellent kites on windy days. Dear motorway If found please return to.......

On the track though it was all business for the Renn-wagens. First up and out of the gate on street radials was Lee Appleby in his 2276 n/a Karmann Ghia, photos really don't do this car justice and is a credit to Lee. Lee was still buzzing from an excellent performance at Vw Action a few weeks earlier ( see link http://sas-renn-wagens.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/club-vwaction-report-2013pb-after-pb.html) where he ran a pb of 14.05 but Lee was determined to see the season out in the 13s. Guess what.....he accomplished his goal on the day by storming into the 13s with a 13.8sec pass - if this immaculately turned out fast car isn't worthy of a magazine feature I don't know what is. WELL DONE LEE, AWESOME JOB!

Richie Moss of Stinkhound Speedshop was campaigning "the old faithful mota" for what was probably the last time before lil Stink is introduced to the power plant which sits waiting patiently for d day. You'd think Rich had squeezed every last ounce outta that thing BUT he just keeps finding more in it and it seemed only fitting that he'd hit yet another pb at Cal look Drag Day, 11.78 bettering his previous 11.83 - that's no gas, no turbo, NO PROBLEM!!! Fantastic effort Rich!!!

Pb number 3 goes to Mark Palmer with Meltdown and the whole club couldn't be happier for him. Leading up to Drag Day, Meltdown had seen a gearbox upgrade and some aesthetic enhancements including some very cool gold leaf sign-writing done by Mark himself - the car looks badass. You can see a video of one of Marks runs here https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10202323613475322&set=vb.1341335390&type=2&theater . Mark ended the day with a 12.71, confident in the knowledge that the setup has great promise, remember marks still just shaking this car down as he balances a full work life and family life. Hopefully a daylight mot planned for next year will allow more fettle time ensuring even bigger leaps forward at the track.

Damo Tomes arrived in his recently featured  Volksworld magazine cover car and multiple award winning 67, having cruised down with fellow club member and partner in crime Neil Payne. Despite being short on time needing to be home by early afternoon It took all of 30secs for Damo to decide that a run out and supporting fellow members from the trackside just wasn't going to feed his fire so into scrutineering and out onto the track he went for some power play, of course being mindful of requiring a trouble free run home, Damo wasn't hunting PBs on this occasion, happy enough to enjoy some track time and club banter - and that's what it's all about, GREAT JOB DAMO.

Neil Payne's upcoming magazine feature 64 looker was looking sharp, and its clear over the past 12 months this guy has really got his eye in with the car. You may recall from the previous blog that Neil took his car into the 12's at vwaction with a pb of 12.8. Neil again ran solid 12's on radials, proving this car has every bit as much go as show and he was clearly enjoying his newly installed line loc resulting in some sweet looking burnouts. Neil's launches were some of the most brutal launches of any of the street cars running on the day, and with a job well done he headed off home to get some of that white gloss DIY painting done which he kindly put off until the evening so he could represent out on the strip. CHEERS NEIL.

 Out of 2013 Drag Strip hibernation came Steve Milward's hard as nails 61 Looker, life's normalities had ensured a quiet season for the 61, but determined to see the year out with some strip time and with the help of Stinkhound Speedshop and a moto overhaul & carb refresh by Daz Chandler at Aircooled performance, combined with a last minute mot on the tow vehicle (thanks Kraftwerk for the use of the workshop) Steve made it to the dance. With the shift light turned down 700rpm to ensure a trouble free day of fun, There would be no hunting of PBs on this occasion but his smile would have suggested otherwise. Steve hit a couple of mid to high 13 sec passes which is none too shabby considering the short shifting. GREAT EFFORT STEVE

Lee Palmer and Dave Jacques of kraftwerk were aiming to complete mission impossible, having worked tirelessly to get the car from literally nothing to Drag Day in a ridiculously short time frame, the car was under the club marquee from the moment it arrived in order to get some of the final jobs checked off the list. The lads worked tirelessly throughout the day only stopping to help crew and support meltdown's run. In a cruel twist of fate the car was scrutineered  up and running and headed to the fire up lane literally 2 minutes too late, with time being called - Dave's counting that as technically a 12sec pass. Unfortunately rain on the Sunday killed any chance of getting out and running, but a valiant effort non the less.

Mike Riley rocked up Friday afternoon in his awesome 1956 23 window 2332cc Efi 15sec samba, with hopes of an early start Saturday morning to see some track time. Unfortunately the weather prevented the track from opening until 1pm and with prior engagements Mike had no option but to head off late morning and so unfortunately on this occasion was without strip time. Mike is alway great value in the pits and it was great you made the effort despite being so pressed on time. Cheers Mike

Other note worthy contributions...

Peachey Cornes proved himself dependable and hard working, transitioning constantly between pairing the cars resulting in some excellent heads up racing, crewing various club cars, distributing racers bacon baps to anyone in the pits who asked, and a hundred other tasks in between. Peach remains our youngest member and despite being the frequent recipient of club banter (borderline bullying lol) he should be safe in the knowledge that his enthusiasm and efforts are acknowledged and respected by us. CHEERS PEACHEY

Brothers Lovatt are a great example of the Rennwagen extended family, club cars are only part of what makes the club, enthusiastic friends who are there to help "CREW, BREW AND DO" is what we need and these guys did just that. THANKS LADS

Dave ward our young friend from the north deserves mention here in our club report, if we could only convince that lad to change his postcode hey Dave. Master Ward was a previous recipient of the Spirit of Drag Day award, and he showed the same enthusiasm on the day.  Dave was not shy of getting his hands dirty and assisted a number of our guys throughout the day. GOOD MAN!!!

And finally our exulted leader and club captain Jamie Palmer, Jamie was a true legend all weekend, despite no car due to it undergoing a naturally aspirated transformation Jamie was on top form all weekend providing top laughs and support. Firstly to assist Steve Milward, he kindly drove Steve's t4 and car laden trailer to drag day on the Friday allowing Steve to balance work and family commitments. On the Saturday evening Jamie took Billy Menace on a 60 mile round trip to pick up a replacement top pulley in order to save Billy a recovery vehicle ride home (fan belt kindly provided by Lee Appleby). Jamie led the evening shenanigans, kicking off the club breakdancing competitions (you can see the video of the final here https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10202309290277251&set=vb.1341335390&type=2&theater) staring competitions, arm wrestling competition and club jive, never let it be said we aren't high brow. Worse for wear Jamie finally retired to his tent in the early hours but realised he was without drinking water and after beating on Richie Mosses van in search of a cup he headed out into the night to the drinking tap barefoot in the dark and rain, thankfully the light from friend of the club Glynn Morgan's pit space was shining like a welcoming beacon so barefoot he trudged across for shelter and friendship. Rumours around the pits in the morning were awash with contradictory stories of sightings of a yeti or Sasquatch trudging barefoot in search of a watering hole with only a select few really knowing the truth. THERE'S ONLY ONE JAMIE P
(the morning after)

(We don't stop competing when the racing stops - Breakdance final in progress)

What a weekend, Roll on next year! We'll end the report with this cool shot taken by the club pits

photo credits:
wide 5 Photography
Ste Topping
Andi Michelle M
Steve M
other cool shots from the day here http://peterdonaldson.zenfolio.com/p946998304


Neil P said...

Awesome write up, cheers to everyone who helped organise it, had a great day!

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