On December 16th, 2017 I attend the 5th round of the Top Notch Tour at Channel Islands Raceway in Santa Barbara, CA. First I would like to thank Shara and Jeff Hurley for all the help in the pits and the epic turn marshaling!!
It was a interesting day in that the Thomas fire was bearing down on Santa Barbara and we had to wear masks to avoid breathing in smoke and ash. Overall I was extremely impressed with the track facilities, with both a 1/10 scale track and 1/8 scale track. Although the only hiccup we had was the power going out in the pits due to the some issue with the generators.
Here is a shot of my TLR 8ightE 4.0 right before my first qualifier. The buggy felt good in the morning with a fresh oil throughout the buggy.
I was driving really dumb in practice and took out my front shock tower... Here is a shot of the aftermath.
Here is a shot of the track from the top left corner when looking from the drivers' stand. The track was very challenging to many large, off camber jumps and tight technical turns. This was actually the top of the off camber step up that claimed many broken parts throughout the day.
Here is a shot of the step up, it was massive!
Before the step up, there was a small rhythm double in front of the drivers stand. After the double, there was a small down hill to a small double into a very tight turn. So many people got the small double wrong and ended up flipping over.
After the downhill double and tight turn, there was a very technical mid field that would jump onto the back straight. A lot of time was either gained in the middle with a smooth tight lines, or you blew it and got passed. Many times people would flip you in the first turn, you you would end up wide from coming in too hot and promptly be passed.
The top straight away was very narrow and it was easy to to get the line wrong and hit the back wall. the end of the straight led into a step down, that then lead into a high speed berm. That step down gave me so much trouble all day and the berm nearly took me out completely.
Here is a shot of the berm. Trying to make a pass in the loom in the middle left of the image sent me flying off the track. In order to make it fast through the berm you has to stay low.
After the berm, there was another off camber double right out of a 180 degree turn. This part of the track was fairly simple.
After the previous double, you came up to another 180 degree turn and directly into this huge double that lead into the lap counter. The objective of the big double was to stay low and downside perfectly in order to set up the turn that came immediately after landing.
The weather was nice overall, but a plume of smoke rained down ash over the track. Here is a shot of the sun being blocked out!
Here is another shot of the smoke that lingered over the track.
The Ebuggy main was rough for me. I ended up getting taken out pretty hard and here is a shot of the aftermath.
Here is the video of the main.
The Sportsman buggy A Main started very poorly for me, but I kept my cool and tried my best to keep it all together. I ended up getting a 3rd place finish!
Here is the video of the main.
This race was a great learning experience for me and I really enjoyed myself overall! I am excited to paint some fresh bodies!
Thank you AKA and Team Trinity for all of your support with keeping my tires, motor, and batteries dialed.