Nitrolympx, Hockenheim, Germany.
Since we left Tierp Arena after the last race, we have worked hard. Both with our companies and the car.
Had to start by ordering a new flexplate which broke in Tierp so we couldn't continue the elimination.
Meziere Enterprises sent a new with express shipping.
Since the size we had was not available, we had to choose a new size. It also meant that we had to manufacture a new engine plate to get the starter motor in the right place. As this is very important.
It was also time to change the rods and pistons in the engine. Which is pure service that must be done in order not to destroy the engine.
We took the engine apart and Emil Nilsén Performance set up and honed the block. We did grind in the piston rings and reassemble the engine. The cylinder heads got a major overhaul as well.
We did also change the gear in the rear axle and readjust the rear settings, as we wanted to test something new.
We didn't have time to start the car before we had to load and drive down towards Hockenheim. It takes us two days to go there by truck and trailer.
Once there on Thursday, the weather was very hot. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to start the car on Thursday as there would be pit silence.
We rebuilt our two gearboxes to suit the rear axle gear and the track. We have two gearboxes with different gears to be able to quickly switch between two rounds if required. We can also share these gearboxes and put them together, which means that we have four gears set up´s to quickly choose from.
The engine also received new ignition cables and distributor cap.
At Tierp we had problems with the shift light, that did not go off after shifting to second gear, so Mats had to look at the tachometer and shift to the third gear in the eliminations at Tierp. The car did go so nice so Mats could do it. That was good driver skills. But unfortunate we broke the flexplate and could not make the semi-final. See the last report from Tierp Arena.
Dick Koster at Post & Dros had a new Race Pak shift light module for us that we mounted in the car on Thursday as well.
We kept track of the weather through our weather station, so we know how to adjust the fuel nozzles.
On Friday, we started the engine as early as was allowed, as we wanted to check everything and adjust the ignition, etc. after everything has been taken apart. You don't want to get any surprises at the last minute before the first turn.
It was nervous before the first qualifying run to see how the car would react with all the adjustments we made, the track and the warm weather.
We were quite in the end of our class to drive the first run.
Many cars seemed to have problems and were running 7 second passes. We wanted to drive in the 5 second zon, so it didn't feel so good. Two pairs before us, Marcus Perman drove 6.14 seconds on the same lane we were going to drive. Then there was a sense of relief and the adjustment we had made remain. We have the chance to make quick adjustments with fuel and ignition right up until we start the car. Sometimes it can be hard to se other cars struggeling and have the nerv to stay with your plan and adjustments. But we did it.
The car went off very nicely and we were relieved and very happy to see 5.94 seconds on the scoreboard. Qualified second after David Vegter's 5.93.
Before the second qualifying turn, we adjusted the ignition curve a little and drove again. 5.95 seconds in the other lane, showed that we were right in our adjustment as the track also got a little better. Still second qualifier. We were still a little high in the wheel speed at the beginning of the round and little low further out.
When we did check the valves after the second round, the engine did start to go heavy to turn around. We did take apart the entire engine to see what happened. We were able to establish that there was nothing wrong with the engine, the engine and converter got hotter in the afterheat after the run, so it squeaked. We were in bed late that night.
During the night it rained heavily and cooled the air down a bit.
Before Saturday's first qualifying round, we gave the engine more methanol at idle as it is the fuel that keeps the temperature of the engine. And in this hot weather we needed to cool it more. However, with that we also removed some power from the start, so it would be exciting to see the effect of that.
In the third qualifying run, there was a mistake made so the trans brake did not engage when the car was in the starting position. When Mats stepped on the gas pedal to go up to the starting rpm, the car went away, and we couldn't count on that run. It is alot of differnt stuff that is going on for a driver when the car is going in to stage and the start is going fast. Everthing must be in right order and timing.
Before the second and last qualifying round on Saturday, we didn't make any changes, so we tried again as we intended the first run of the day. 5.96 seconds. Janne Ericsson pushed us down to third qualifying spot by 0.001 seconds.
We did three qualifing rounds with 0.012 sec difference on different lanes, different days and adjustments. Fells good when the car dont make any big steps and you see on the grafs in the computer that the car makes what you want and tell it to do.
Mats fell ill on Saturday evening. We guess it was the hot weather that made that.
On Sunday morning, Pro modified was out early as we run a 16-car field. Which means that we must run an elimination round and then quickly turn around the car and then go on with the 8-car field together with the other FIA classes that run the European Championship.
Better engine weather in the morning. Adjusted the ignition curve and fuel. It would be this time we would have a good chance to improve the time before it would get warmer during the day. 5.879 seconds was a very good time and the fastest Pro Mod time for this weekend. But unfortunately, it was a red light, and the competition was over for us. That's how drag racing is, if you do something wrong, or something broke you don't get a second chance. Mats did get more ill, so he had to sleep the rest of the day. So it was maybe best that he didn’t drive anymore that day.
On the way home, we got a puncture on the trailer so a tire came off. Luckily we have a workshop in the trailer so we were able to remove the rim, disconnect the air and raise the suspension so we could continue home and it worked.
This season we had some bad luck in the eliminations, But the car handles very good.
We are very happy with the 5,87 time, in this weather and this track.
It is 0.035 sec from our personal best (5.84) on a better track, and much better engine weather. We were also only 0.003 seconds from Janne Ericsson's track record of 5.876 seconds.
This season we made two 5,85 runs at Tierp. But the 5,87 at Hockenheim feels better in does conditions. This gives us inspiration for next year.
We are sorry, we will not go to Santa Pod in England for the final round of the European Dragracing Championship.
As it was too big cost and complicated for us Swedes to get there, we decided earlier in the summer not to go there. Now there seems to be a better way for us to go to England. But it was too close to the race for us. We have a lot of work at the companies and team members must apply for time off from their jobs in time. We will aim for the next season instead.
And we keep smiling of the performance the car got this season. Built in our shop from Docol sheet metal and Docol R8 tubes from our city.