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Well, just back from the race. Had a fantastic time - 1700 miles in 5 days as we drove there, raced and drove home. The car never missed a beat, and averaged between 21 and 26 US mpg, including the race!
This event is a timed race over a 118 mile road course (a there-and-back thing with 59 miles each way). Because I was a rookie to the event and did not have a 5-point harness, my average course speed was restricted to 110mph with a max allowed of 124mph. So, our target time was 62 minutes and 11 seconds. We came in 0.288 seconds over our target time - this was only good enough for fifth in our class, so it shows how competitive these folk are. Our sophisitcated timing gear was a cheap stopwatch and a Walmart egg-timer - we velcroed the timer to the dash and it literally melted! Daytime temperatures reached as high as 117F, so this is another testament to the MP4 - it ran perfectly throughout. The only issue that arose during the entire week was having to abort launch control because the car showed "high clutch temperature" after we crawled down to the start line (we were car number 129 on a grid of 156 vehicles). However, the car behind me took a video of our start using just track mode and auto - I'll post it when he sends it to me - its amazing how quickly the McLaren disappears into the horizon.
Miscellaneous memories are; winning the car show; winning the people's choice; getting to see an unrestored 427SC Cobra with 10,965 original miles on it hidden in a one-stall agarage; and being picked to drive Miss Fort Stockton in the big parade (FYI, you can drive with both doors open at around 35-40 no problem!).
The attached photos show;
1) waiting in line for Tech Inspection. We initiall failed for not having a metal fire extinguisher bracket (the McLaren bracket is plastic). The Tech guy said "no problem, just drill some holes through the bulkhead"! We evenutally used the screws for the mesh storage between the seats
2) taking the car to the high school car wash
3) at the car show. It was absolutely amazing how many people knew all about the car. The best one was a guy who looked and talked like a caricature of a hill-billy, but who spoke eloquently about this season's F1 races and the use of KERS, DRS etc!
4) Miss Fort Stockton, steady guys, she's only 18
5) on the start line waiting for our first run
6) no animals were harmed in this event........but a lot of insects were!
I can recommend this event to anyone - its a bunch of gearheads with an huge range of vehicle interest, but all of the folk were great. I'll definitely be back next year, and am following the forum thread on harness points with great interest - the course will be much more fun in the 165 class!


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