So last weekend saw the first event out in the Micra for quite a while, due to the Bovington stages being cancelled.
It was an early start off to Debden airfield last Sunday, for the last of the Anglia Motorsport Autosolo’s.
This was the first time I had driven the car properly on tarmac for a good few months. So to start with my times were not that great, averaging about 4th in class on the tests. The tests were different to the last time I was at Debden earlier in the year. I think the lack of pace was mostly down to rustiness on my part and a lack of grip from my rather worn Yoko A539’s. After a bit of a break wait to complete the second run of tests I thought about trying the new wheels/tyres that had got recently. A set of 14″ Nissan alloys with some 155 wide Umbongo tyres on them. These were brand new and only just scrubbed in on the way to the event. With very little grip so far, there wasn’t much to loose by trying them.
With a strong wind, the surface was starting to dry out, and the switch to these new tyres helped to start to find some grip. This also helped improve my confidence in the car, and I was happier in throwing the car around. and slowly the times were improving.
After lunch (the usual bacon/cheese burger) and a walk of the new tests, it was clear that one of the test would require some ‘commitment’ to get the best times. This is where I am usually good at getting back time. Going out from lunch I was still about 10’s off the class win, and about 8’s off 2nd in class.
The afternoon runs went a lot better, and the Unbongo’s were working well, until it really dried out on the faster tests where I was reaching the limits of their limited design.
By the end of the day it was all a little too late to make all the time back on the very fast Mini of the Christmas’s. I finished up about a second off 1st in class, but made up enough time to end up 2nd in class by 5’s.
The overall results were 3rd overall, and 2nd in class. I did manage to set an overall test fastest time, beating all the Autosolo and Autotest crews which was pleasing. As the saying goes the improvements were all a little too late for the win.
That is now likely to be the last event now for the year in the Micra, hopefully there is one last event with us out on a scatter in December.
Here is the final run of the ‘commitment’ test