Tag Archives: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup

Truex wins the first race of the Chase Playoffs, Josef Newgarden wins Indycar Championship

Well, the first race of the Chase Playoffs is in the books and to nobody’s surprise Martin Truex won on the mile-and-a-half Chicagoland Speedway. It was a great race, especially with Kyle Busch getting 2 laps down but finishing on the lead lap. Truex didn’t exactly dominate the race, but there weren’t many times when he wasn’t either in the lead or striking distance of the lead.

And the IndyCar race from Sonoma is on but it might as well be on the radio because Clint has decided that the spot in front of the TV is the perfect place to take a nap, which blocks the crawl showing the running order, and it’s almost like they were watching me type this because now the crawl is at the top of the screen, and Clint is laying down almost enough to see the whole screen. There was a break in there where Clint decided to try to sleep in behind me in my chair (I have a memory foam seat cushion that retains body heat) and I couldn’t reach the keyboard to type. And Simon Pagenaud wins the race but Josef Newgarden of Hendersonville TN wins the championship. I used to work in an auto parts store in Hendersonville for a company that doesn’t exist any more. I wonder if Newgarden ever came into the Honey’s Auto Parts in Hendersonville?

Now is the replay of the F1 race in Singapore. I missed the first show and haven’t checked the F1 web page for the race. So for me this is like a live race. And that first lap was wild. Too many people trying to win in the first corner with too little traction in the wet. There were 5 cars taken out in one corner and half of them were hit by a car out of control after bouncing off another car. At this point about halfway into the race there are either 7 or 6 cars out, the graphics aren’t staying up long enough to be sure. And now they are back to showing just 5 cars out with two some laps down. With all the cars flying during the slow-motion replays I’m getting lots of good ideas for underbody configuration. And right now they have a dry line and small lakes off line so it’s follow the leader on slicks, but the rest of the track is drying so maybe there could be some passing in the last few minutes. Checking the graphics they lost 2 more to mechanical failure bringing the casualty count to 7. ATM it looks like Hamilton unless something breaks in the last lap which has happened before to Hamilton in the Mercedes. But today he won. Even though they didn’t throw a checkered until the second lap after the white flag. Another WTF moment in a series of WTF moments in this race.

On the TGS2 right now there is zero progress being made. I’m rebuilding my hone to get the kingpins to fit the spindles but other than that nothing is getting done. The biggest impediment is changing my anti-depressant meds destroying any motivation I have. That and zero budget for parts and tools. That really kills progress too.

And on that happy note I’m going to shower and get to bed.

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Big racing weekend

There are a bunch of races on the tube this weekend, trucks tonight, Xfinity series tomorrow, and F1, Monster Energy, and Indy Car on Sunday. Indy Car is deciding their champion Sunday, Xfinity series is starting their playoffs and the trucks are setting their playoff contenders tonight. Racing inspires me when I’m building my TGS2, but I don’t get any direct transfer from their designs. Detail touches sure, but nothing major can transfer because of the vastly different technology in my car and all of those race series. I think the closest is Indy Car or F1 because of the mid-engines, but with the tubular beam front axle and de Dion rear suspension on my car compared to the 4-wheel independent suspension on those cars, and my engine being transverse and their engines being longitudinal, and I have a 4-sp automatic and they have 6 to ? speed manual or semi-automatic transmissions. Like I said, details, details.

I have been following a YouTube series on building an Australian rules Formula Vee and I have to say their rules are a wild combination of ancient suspension geometry and frame, and modern aerodynamics. And the tires are completely different from the spec tires used in the US. Like I said, interesting and something to add to the data bank even when there is no direct transfer to my car. I like to learn as much as possible because you just never know when something you learned is going to come in handy. And that doesn’t just apply to cars. Sioux, that one’s for you.

One of the things I have been thinking about was extending and smoothing the front contours of the body for more room in the cockpit and better aero for freeway fuel economy. I have some options on that, because I can either put a big fuel tank behind the driver, or two smaller tanks on either side of the driver in a more supine driving position for less frontal area. The single tank behind a more upright driver is better for Goodguys autocross and SCCA Solo racing, but the laydown position gets better fuel economy and isn’t a very big handicap for autocross and Solo. Final analysis it depends on personal preference, my personal preference. And I prefer to sit more upright and be able to see my outside front corners, plus the single tank costs a ton le$$ than the two tank setup, because the single tank is a stocked item in several retail sellers, while the dual tanks would be custom job$.

Something else to consider is the adaptability of the cockpit to different drivers. The supine driving position requires lots of changes between drivers unless they are practically identical twins where the more upright position just needs to change the seat insert and maybe the steering wheel when changing drivers. I’m thinking about changing drivers because I want to have a pro driver to get the most out of the car at Goodguys, and I have a friend who’s a decent driver and probably wants to get behind the wheel in competition, too. So I really need a cockpit that is adaptable to different drivers without major disassembly.

I spent the weekend Doing Things so now I have something to write about

Saturday was grocery and laundry day, and Sunday was RPG day. Food was bought, and fun was had as we tried to save a slaughterhouse from the scourge of demon cattle, and cyber cockroaches, although I still haven’t wrapped my mind around how two such disparate things struck at the same time. The demon rats I can understand they’re just smaller versions of the demon cattle. But where did the cyber cockroaches come from? The demon rats were probably created at the same time as the demon cattle by drift from one group of animals to another, but the cockroaches had to have been a second attack against the slaughterhouse. We never did discover who was responsible for either attack because someone reported the demon cattle infestation to the Health Department.

I also watched the 9 Hours of Indy, formerly known as the Brickyard 400. It wasn’t supposed to take that long but stoppages for rain and for wrecks that completely blocked the track for several hours to clean up debris and spilled fluids caused it to be that long. I tuned in after the RPG group got finished, and still got to watch the last 40 laps. Congrats to Kasey Kahne on punching his ticket to the Playoffs.

Junk Mail has come through in spades in providing raw stock for the TGS2 scale mockup. ADT sent an actual sheet of plastic with their ad printed on it that will make an excellent floor and fender support. Also the local school district sent an ad on very heavy paper that can also be used for floors and diffusers, probably flexible enough to use for actual fenders as well.

Tomorrow I have to go deposit a check, and get my toes done so I can start walking again. I might be getting a visitor after lunch.

Comparing forward and conventional driver seating

Watching the Canadian GP on the idiot box while waiting to walk down to the phone store and pay the bill. Aside from Hamilton running away and hiding from the rest of the field it is a good race to watch with lots of close racing all up and down the order. And in a few minutes the Cup race from Pocono starts.

You have heard the saying about a picture being worth a thousand words, and my usual post is about half that. So instead of talking about the difference in the driving position I marked the body with the rear of the conventional driving position to go with the previously marked far forward driving position.You can easily see how far forward the driver gets moved
The forward mark is the same one I used before, same piece of tape even. The rear mark is what I get by putting my feet behind the original firewall. That tiny piece of tape was the inside edge of my butt marker from when this body was going to be a front engine bucket with two seats. Yes, my butt is that narrow, the outside edge is the edge of the floor where the body turns up. And moving my butt that far forward only changed the weight bias from 63% rear to 60% rear without the 0.25″ floor pan under said butt.

OK F1 race just ended and Hamilton finished like 20 seconds ahead. Except for the usual first lap/early race carnage most of the attrition was brake failure except for one engine vibration retirement to keep from scattering the engine on the track. So now I switched to the Cup race at Pocono which is still in Stage 1 and drivers are already complaining about brakes going away, which partly shows why I want to make sure I can get enough tire to make good use of the big brakes on the TGS2. I know with the rear weight bias the front brakes won’t get as much use as they would with the front engine, and the rear brakes will see much higher temperatures than with the front engine.

And Junior just missed a shift and damaged the engine. And now it has been a few laps and Jimmy Johnson and Jamie McMurray both just had brake failure in the same turn, same lap to crash within feet of each other with McMurray catching fire from the impact damage. Jimmy absolutely nailed the wall, almost knocking it down. He got out under his own power but had to catch his breath a bit before taking the mandatory ambulance ride, while McMurray was in such a hurry to get out of his burning car he didn’t disconnect the AC hose and was walking around after the wreck with part of it hanging off the back of his helmet. Race has been red flagged because of the mess in turn 1, when Jimmy hit a lot of parts and pieces fell off the car and fluids ran on the track.

And Ryan Blaney just beat Kevin Harvick to the checkered flag. Sorry I got hung up with watching the race and forgot to report on it, but if you were interested in the race you would watch it I guess. And to add fuel to the Ford v Chevy wars, Harvick did the 3-2 instead of 3-4 shift and his Ford was fine but the Chevys all blew up in the same situation. And a Ford won.

I just saw an interesting use for coal, a carved anthracite trophy at Pocono. I don’t know if the eagle is made from coal but what is under it is.

And it’s time for me to walk to the phone store and pay the bill.

This will be a long day

I’m posting this right before midnight local time after finishing my walk(s). Technically I took two walks as recorded by my workout tracker because instead of pausing I ended the workout when I was getting stuff from the store and started a new one after I left. There are contests I’m entered in that count up to 2 workouts a day at least 20 minutes long and no more than 4 hours long, and walking back from the store is right at 25 minutes depending on how I catch the lights. I just qualified for the drawing in the one contest, but still have a ways to go in the other. One gets me free Subway food and some other stuff, the other gets me Red Bull, and a bunch of other stuff, and I just qualified for the Subway drawing.

Anywho, getting to why Sunday will be a long day, there are 3 world-class races spread over the day tomorrow. Starting at 0700 tomorrow is the Monaco Grand Prix, and about the time they get through the podium festivities there, the pre-race for the Indianapolis 500 starts at 1000 local. That runs through 0200 scheduled and we have a break until 1600 for the pre-race for the Coca-Cola World 600 from Charlotte NC, and that race is scheduled to run until 2100. That’s 12 hours of racing spread out over 14 hours of the day. And it starts about 5 hours before I normally get up. Fortunately we have coffee after I did my walk to the store. I have the feeling I will be drinking most of a pot trying to stay awake if the races are boring.

Of the races the only one I don’t know the pole sitter is Monaco, the only news I got was that Lewis Hamilton is not on the pole for the race. For Indy Ed Carpenter will lead the field to the green, and Kevin Harvick will be leading the zeroth lap at Charlotte.

Happy Memorial Day.

It’s ‘Dega baby!

Just finished watching the Xfinity race from Talladega. There were lots of wrecks but not while I was watching. I kept coming back to the aftermaths instead of the actual wrecks. I don’t like wrecks, I hate seeing good race cars torn up, I’m also not very happy about seeing crappy race cars torn up. I mean sure I am less unhappy about crappy cars getting torn up, but at the Xfinity and Monster Energy Cup levels there really are no “crappy” cars, just “less perfect” cars that could run just as fast with a few adjustments. Part of that is rules, part is the teams are just that good.

Watching the Xfinity and Cup Series is part of my inspiration for both the Sprint-T and the Mid-Bucket. Also I watch YouTube videos of Goodguys Autocrosses from recent years and SCCA Solo events that have Modified category cars for when I run slicks. Speaking of slicks, I just can’t find 16 X 12 wheels in my bolt circle at a reasonable price, so that means the 6″ Formula Vee rears on the front on the 4″ wide wheels, and the 12″ wide tires on 10″ wheels on the back.

And now the ARCA cars are about to run (on the tube at least, I don’t know if this is live or tape-delayed) and in about an hour is the IMSA race from COTA outside Austin. So then I start flipping back and forth. And I won’t have the split attention that will let me write and watch 2 races at the same time so I’ll go ahead and end this post.

A State of Detent Has Been Reached At Casa de El Poeta

Mrs. the Poet has been complaining about how I’m “not helping” her throw away my stuff when she does it during the part of the day when I’m still asleep. I don’t understand this. I don’t complain that she’s not helping me write when I start composing stuff at 0300 when the Internet is fastest locally and I can get to reference materials most quickly.

So we reached a compromise, in that Mrs. the Poet will not start throwing my stuff away until I get up, and because we both have things to do over the weekend I will start helping her on Monday afternoon after I have had coffee. There is something in the garage that she calls a “box full of rusty metal stuff” that I’m almost afraid to open. Then we don’t go into the garage again until after I get up Friday.

On other things I’m playing some more Shadowrun tomorrow, and there is a late race on Sunday, the Las Vegas race for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup. And now that I have a new tube of GOOP™ I can continue to mock up the Mini Sprint-T street version. I haven’t found a model kit that has the Pentastar V6 as an option so kitbashing is right out. But I have that first wheel glued up and ready to test fit to the tire when the glue dries. I’ll probably do that Sunday while I’m watching the race during commercials.

Billed @€0.02 Opus the Unkillable

Things are looking good today

Things have been good this weekend around Casa de El Poeta. The lady my wife is helping unpack and downsize had an extra wheelchair seat cushion that I’m now parking my butt on in my office chair, and it’s super comfy. Now I don’t know if there was an extra cushion because she’s no longer using a wheelchair, or if she somehow had more than one cushion. Doesn’t matter, I have a comfy place to park my butt for writing and reading stuff on my computer.

Mrs. the Poet woke up with a sore leg today so we are skipping church. There is about 0.8 mile (1.3 Km) walk from the transit station to the church with no bus service on Sunday so that bus stop in front of the church is of no use to actually get to church on Sunday. Mrs. the Poet feels her leg will not make that walk without either a lot of pain or the leg actually quitting. I’m familiar with a leg that fails to function, the nerve damage I got in the wreck does that to me sometimes even this far out from the wreck. The difference between Mrs. the Poet’s situation and mine is we have opposite legs failing on us, and she has a back injury causing her issues.

On the hot rod front it looks like I will need to install a front anti-roll bar to get as much oversteer out of the car as possible. That’s from running the numbers through the equations in the Herb Adams Chassis Engineering book on weight distribution and cornering weight transfer. I can’t calculate the exact size bar I will need to install from that book, but I can determine that I will need to use one. The other thing I will need to do is lower the rear roll center to tighten the rear grip geometrically. Since I have already determined that I’m going to mount the lateral locating device as low as possible on the rear this is not news to me. The current plan is to make the street setting about 7″ below axle center and move it up as required for autocross racing at Goodguys or SCCA. The limit is when the front end is transferring all the weight from the inside to the outside tire and the inside front tire lifts off the ground. At that point if the car is still oversteering there ain’t nothing that can be done by making adjustments to weight transfer. The only thing to do would be going to bigs and littles on the tires with the bigs holding up the back end because more tire = more grip. Bigs and littles is a traditional combination for T Buckets because the traditional geometry has the rear roll center anywhere from 5 to 7 inches above the axle centerline where I’m building a much lower rear roll center to keep the tires as equal as possible.

On other things I need to get my toes done tomorrow. I said this before but the nerve damage in my left leg keeps me from being able to trim the pinky toe and the next toe over by myself because I run out of hands. Those two toes curl under when I’m doubled up to reach my toes and it takes two hands to pull the toes out and hold the foot down leaving me one hand short to trim the nails. I would prefer to not spend the $$ and trim my own nails but conditions dictate otherwise. While I’m in the area I will pop over to the pharmacy in the same complex and renew my antidepressant prescription, and get a few things we missed yesterday rushing through the store.

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup race at Atlanta is just ending and Kevin Harvick lost the lead on a speeding penalty, leaving Keselowski free to take the win.

And I need to get ready for the many things I need to do tomorrow.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable