Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

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Weathers
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Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby Weathers » Wed May 22, 2019 1:08 pm

I’ve just signed up and joined Steve (SJLB) on a track evening at Brands on Tuesday 11th June.

Does anyone else fancy a few laps of the Indy Circuit?

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nelmo
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Re: Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby nelmo » Wed May 22, 2019 3:46 pm

Got any details (cost, times etc)?

Where did you book it through?

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Weathers
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Re: Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby Weathers » Wed May 22, 2019 7:15 pm

http://www.trackdays.co.uk

£119

16:00 - Signing On from
17:00 - Safety Briefing
17:30 - Sighting laps
17:45 - Open pit lane
20:00 - (or Dusk) Track time ends (earliest applies)

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Weathers
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Re: Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby Weathers » Wed Jun 12, 2019 10:26 am

Well that was an entertaining evening........

Steve couldn’t make it due to work commitments so it was just my daughter that I took to Brands Hatch for her first run in the Westfield and her first track day.... Baptism of fire anyone? :lol:

We arrived early around 4pm and registered and got our driver and passenger wrist bands. We then had the car sound tested. Bit louder than usual but as ever we were well below the sound limit and we got all the kit ready for our laps. We had a quick walk around the paddock to see what other metal was out there. A real mix actually. Every thing from MX5s, Clio’s, Civics and Minis to Westys and Caterhams to Alpha, new 911, Aston’s and a Morgan and some race prepped BMWs and some smaller BTCC style cars. Plus a couple of historic racers just to bring a little class to the proceedings. Ford Capri, old Alpha plus a Porsche.

We then watched a few other cars being noise tested (we were parked right next to the testing station). The Aston Vantage and Alpha C4 sounded the best. The bloke doing the testing had the noise meter right up the exhaust (rather than the designated 50cm away) so a few cars got a “you can try but you might fail the drive by noise test”. One bloke in a civic looked absolutely gutted. It was a tidy motor but bloody loud. (Eventually only one black flag for noise once we were on the circuit so not too bad.)

At 5pm We went to the “these are the flags, this is how you over take” briefing. And at about 5:30pm collected a second wrist band then it was a mad scramble into the garages as it was first come first served. Think Le Mans start with cars, trailers and vans going everywhere!

Garage no 24 was our home for the evening. I’ll definitely book a garage where I can in the future though as that was ridiculous. People cutting other people up and getting angry and there were enough garages to house everyone but people didn’t want to share so bunches of people that were together were taking up multiple garages. Some d*ck in a new shape type R civic decided to park across our garage pit lane exit so he could park with his mates. He soon moved after a polite “excuse me” or words to that effect. :roll:

We got the car off the trailer. Removed the roof (yes you heard right) and attached the GoPro.

Out for sighting laps which were hilarious as who ever was towards the front of the line of cars clearly had a very different view on what the dry line was (absolutely no idea) and there was a complete shambles of cars going all over the shop behind them. And they went so slow I did most of the lap in third at about 2000 rpm without braking. Still it got the car warm and nothing fell off! (Well apart from the rear view mirror that had fallen off in transit, I didn’t see it and sat on it when I first got in the car so it was side mirrors only for this evening).

OPEN PIT LANE: So we waited in a queue to go out on track. The Marshall checked out wrist bands and then complained that my window sticker hadn’t been signed to say I’d done sighting laps. It would have been good to know that this needed to be done. Anyway a bit of grumbling about “how do we know that you’ve done the laps” and “you haven’t got a tow hook” later and “you’re the Nth car that hasn’t been signed” etc etc etc we were waved on to the track.

I took it steady and gradually started to build up the speed as Livy was a bit nervous and I didn’t want to put her off.

We were lapping nicely and I’d started to press on a little. I was flat out on the Brabham Straight having overtaken a handful of cars and braked much later and changed down into third. Still no where near the limit but now some commitment and definitely focused effort required. We went over the blind summit and hit the apex on Graham Hill bend.....

Hang on? The front ends gone light, REALLY light. It feels like suddenly I’ve got 30 more psi in the tyres and over active power steering. Crap, the back gone light too. We’re sliding down hill, side ways and rapidly heading towards the wide curb and the gravel trap.

SORT THIS OUT Weathers..... as I wrestle her straight two wheels on the curb, just in time to avoid the dreaded kitty litter I noticed a tell tale line up the hill on the track - OIL. So I backed off for the next corner and it’s all over the dry line right the way around the rest of the circuit.

I pitted and shouted at the marshal that there was fluid down at Graham Hill bend and then on at least 80% of the circuit that I’d seen. A solid oily line that cut across every apex on the way to the pits.

RED FLAG and the clear up began.

The marshals beavered away furiously and 45 minutes later the circuit is back open. GREEN LIGHT!

Happy days. Leave it 10 mins for the “test pilots” to find any slippy patches first I thought. Just donning our kit and belting up when the heavens absolutely opened. Hail stones at some points plus lightening. We were at the cafe so had to garage hop to get back to no 24. We met some nice people as we worked our way up the pits. Met the caterham driver who had dumped the oil. He said it held 7.5 litres and I think most of that was on the track. He was so apologetic and said it was his first and probably last track day. I tried to persuade him that he was just unlucky, it was the “way of the kit car” and offered him some tools and spares should he need them.

The rain seems to get heavier and heavier. The noise in the garage was terrific. More hale stones.

Lots of other cars and chats on our way but we had a really nice natter with the gentleman driving the green Morgan. It’s not British racing green apparently (I was corrected very politely) but what ever the name it was the dogs danglies. Beautiful car. Apparently he’s had Morgan’s since he was a youngen and has a number other Morgan’s including three wheelers plus some other pre-war goodies in his stable. Interesting bloke but regretting his choice of aero screens over the full windscreen, roof etc that he had sat at home. He been checking the weather all week and taken the gamble.

30 minutes later the track is FLOODED. There’s a water fall coming over the steps on the pit wall and parts of the circuit look like a lake. Mean while Mrs W is sat at home in the garden in glorious sunshine only 30 minutes up the road.

The RAIN STOPS. Yay. The safety car goes out to do some observation laps. The conclusion....

SESSION ENDED. :o

Time to pack up and go home after only 7 steadyish laps and none of the instructor time I’d paid for. And I’ve a Westfield tank plus another 40 litres of Shell V-power to burn through.

The good news is that my daughter absolutely loved it, is a much better passenger than my wife and is already talking about the next time..... 8-)

I’ve driven many track days and this is the first one that’s been curtailed due to the weather. So was probably overdue! Better luck next time I hope.
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Dick
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Re: Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby Dick » Wed Jun 12, 2019 11:57 am

The noise test at brands is how it should be done the end of the noise meter is the correct distance away from the tail pipe. The bit the guy put at the end of the exhaust has no function , its a rest . the measurement point is situated 50cm up this rod away from the end this insures its the correct distance away from the exit.

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Re: Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby greenwoo » Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:12 pm

great write up Chris....had forgotten that you and Steve were booked onto this.
I saw a pic from Brands the other day that someone shared which showed pools/lakes of water, so can imagine that last night was epic too 'wet wise'.....

Glad your daughter enjoyed it - sounds like she'll be co-pilot again!

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Re: Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby Wingco » Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:33 pm

Nice one Chris, some nice pictures, love the Morgan as well.
That weather was something else, ridiculous. Glad your daughter loved her first outing in the kit on a track.
Good write
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Weathers
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Re: Brands Hatch Evening 11th June 2019

Postby Weathers » Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:43 pm

Dick wrote:The noise test at brands is how it should be done the end of the noise meter is the correct distance away from the tail pipe. The bit the guy put at the end of the exhaust has no function , its a rest . the measurement point is situated 50cm up this rod away from the end this insures its the correct distance away from the exit.


That would make sense. Perhaps other circuits are a little less scientific then. Made no difference to me although was one of the higher reading I’ve had.


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