Race Report by Charlene Meiring
Heading out to Zwartkops for practice on the Thursday before the Extreme festival weekend to find out we have the same vibration form the last race meeting at Phakisa was a very frustrating encounter for me. We went back to the shop at Honda Spares to find and repair the problem.
Upon taking the side shafts out and making sure they are not bottoming out, we came across one broken engine mounting and a very bent tie rod end. We replaced both and headed for the track to squeeze in one more session only to find out that the same vibration is still present. Very frustrated and desperate for help I loaded my race engineer in the car and scared the living daylights out of him going around the track and pointing out the vibration to him. Now thank goodness this race day was run over the Friday public holiday and the Saturday so we could work the whole day Friday on the car as I was only competing the Saturday.
As I loaded the car of the track my right rear camber went form 1 degree negative to 120 degrees negative jack up the back the whole rear suspension cracked in two and needed to be CO2 welded. Side shafts came out again just to make sure it is not bottoming out and then we got re-enforcements in in the matter of my Brother Jaques to assist us with the CO2 welding. As a last resort, we took the shocks out only to see the left front shock completely stopped working, thank goodness for great genuine Honda shocks (the only set in the shop) and the racing springs and we are ready for action. And the heavens opened rain in winter in Gauteng – honestly??
Early Saturday morning there was an open practice session and with the speed of lightning I was on the track and “ta-da” vibration was gone, there was real tears of joy when I got back to the pits!
Heat one saw a big off from Kevin Paynter with poor Dawid Louw had nowhere to go and hit Kevin on the doors; fortunately I stayed to the right hand of the track, and avoided the accident. Running much better with the new engine I got the times down to 1:19:9’s, a good 4 seconds quicker that the last time we were out at Zwartkops.
Heat two, was also a good one with more consistent times in the 1:19’s getting closer and closer to my team mate and fellow Honda driver Danie Deysel.
Overall points standing after the 6th race of the year are as follows: Rinus Plomp with 421, Danie Deysel with 411, and me and JC Joubert on 399, in third place.
Class point standings are between Danie on 240, and me, on 204.
Looking so much forward to taking the, Autobreakers / Honda Spares CRX through its paces at Kyalami the 28 September. Hope to see you all there.