Last weekend we had our first real race-trip as we were competing in NM-drifting (Norwegian Championship) and Vålersladden at Vålerbanen in Norway. It’s quite nerve wrecking to go on the first trip every year. First we drove down to Turku to catch the ferry over to Stockholm.
We did a big miss planning our trip way to tight. The NM qualifications started 15 o clock on Friday and we were in Stockholm on Friday morning. No problem, we thought. First the bus decided to break down TWICE!
We got the bus back on the road but the next thing letting us down was google maps. Google directed us on scenic route trough the Swedish mountains that made 50km take 2,5 hours.
We finally got to Våler about an hour before the qualifications and had to quickly get the car down, inspected, and all the necessary papers for Teemu. We just about got everything ready before the last mandatory practice session. Teemu managed to get one run, in which he got lost on the track. Then we found a diesel leak, so no more Practice but we got it fixed to the qualifications. The weather on Friday was really poor. Rain and cold winds made the track really slippery.
Teemu managed to do two decent runs (Except almost getting lost again on the first one) without any practice and qualified 13th. That meant we could start preparing for the Top16 and Vålersladden qualifications. We didn’t get our tablet working in the hurry which is a problem, as that’s the only place we can monitor the turbo-pressure. Next day we started with the Top 16 against Fredrik Myhre.
The first run was a catastrophe for us as Teemu crashed into Fredrik and trying to avoid the crash drove over a clipping point.
The second run was much better and Teemu probably had the upper hand until we got air in the fuel-system. This problem will be solved before our next race!
This meant Fredrik was through and we were out.
After top 16, Jesse, our main mechanic had time to set up the data logger to his phone to replace the troublesome tablet. This revealed that we had been driving the car with 1,5 bar boost instead of 3. We adjusted the boost back to 3 and sent Teemu out to test it.
After this we got some real practice for the first time in 2 years and Teemu was getting way happier with the car.
After the practice it was time for the qualifications for Vålersladden. This was going to take place in a completely unknown corner which made it fun to watch. A lot of crashes spins and good driving. Unfortunately our still-camera broke just as Teemu entered the corner but we got some good video from it, soon to be released.
Teemu qualified 8th and would have been in the Finals. However our bus wasn’t in the best of shape and we had to make it to our ferry in Stockholm on Sunday evening so we had to leave before the Finals. We got some driving done on Sunday morning before we had to leave. Teemu was quite satisfied with the car and really happy to be able to drive without problems and I can’t remember when we last loaded a working race car when leaving the track. But we need a bit more power. Hopefully a new turbo and high-pressure diesel pump will fix that before Gatebil Mantorp.
So you think our trip home was free of problems? Think again! The bus got really bad while driving through Sweden (meeting all the Gumball 3000 cars!!). We were only making 40km/h uphill and not even 100 downhill. This meant we missed our ferry anyway. Happy days, we booked a new ferry from Kapellskär and made it on that one as the second to last car. Then finally in Närpes on the Finnish side 250km from home the bus broke down again (Would not start this time).
We luckily got help from some locals and a truck driver so we could get air-pressure to it and we were able to push start it. Until next time, bye bye.
PS. Buy something 😉