|I'm just starting the 4th lap. You didn't miss much up to this
point, other than another couple of embarrassing laps with several more
mistakes and missed gear shifts.
I'm not sure why I'm blowing so many gear shifts. One of the truly outstanding features of a Chevette, some might say its only outstanding feature, is its excellent gear selection mechanism. The shift lever is mounted directly into the top of the gearbox. There are no sloppy external shift linkages or cables to contend with, of the type that plague most FWD systems.
Even my BMW doesn't shift as nice as these Chevettes. I think my only problem is that I'm spoiled by the much shorter throw of the BMW gear shift lever.
|Coming onto the front straight I let the engine revs build longer in 2nd
gear because there is still plenty of good grip in this turn.
Kevin Sakaluk is still up ahead of me, somewhere in that cloud of blowing snow, and farther ahead now than he was at the end of the first lap. That's a result of all the mistakes I've been making.
Down the long straight and turning into the hairpin, I take a moment to squint out at the side mirror and can see that Landon Goudreau is still behind me.
The gap back to Landon is about the same as the gap between me and Kevin up front.
|Keep it in nice and tight on this turn, as that gives a better approach into the following tighter right/left kink.|
|Slow in, fast out. Especially here.
A tight late apex on this right turn leads into a straighter run around the next left hander, which generates better speed down the straight.
Unfortunately I turned in a bit too early on the left hander, apexed too early, then had to back off momentarily to avoid drifting wide on the exit and eating that outside snowbank.
|As I'm rounding the last corner onto the finish straight, I
can see Kevin crossing the line ahead of me to start his next lap.
There's not much chance of me catching him anymore, unless he makes a major mistake. But that can happen. If he has a quick spin somewhere I'd be on him right away.
I've finally settled down to a good rhythm. This a fairly clean lap, the track still has good traction, and if you're keeping note of times you'll notice this flying lap was completed at a decent pace of 1:39.
|At the end of the long straight, turning into the hairpin, I take
another quick glance in my side mirror to check on Landon behind
He's still about the same distance behind me as I am behind Kevin.
But that could all change very suddenly.
|I run a little wide on the entry to the hairpin and my tires ride up
on the snow that's accumulated here.
Although there is good traction to be found along the proper racing line, offline over here the ice is still as smooth as a skating arena. Plus, the snow and ice chips piled out here make it feel like I'm driving on marbles.
|Gosh. Running offline is a big mistake! It would be all
too easy spin out or run straight off into a snowbank.
I manage to hang on and keep going. But I can surely forget about catching Kevin now. If I make another mistake like that, Landon will be all over me in a flash.