So off to Donington I went yesterday, armed with some semi-slicks. Got up there, swapped wheels, attended the safety briefing and then watched the heavens open as sighting laps commenced.....
It thoroughly p**sed it down for about an hour, meaning the track was pretty wet and getting wetter by the minute. Standing water running across the track in the middle of the craner curve means for some edgy moments in the morning with lots of people dropping it and causing track closure after track closure. There was a distinct lack of grip at McLeans and next to no grip at Coppice for most of the morning, at least for those of us FWD. There were a few rwd cars and 4wd cars that could drive out of the corner much better than my not-yet-bedded-in Toyos and diff could achieve. I found that if you did the same thing 3 times you got 3 different positions and had to really gingerly use the throttle all corner to come out with any sort of speed. The toyos are a lot squarer and i rolled the arch before but there was a light rub on the tyres so out came the jack handle to do some ghetto arch rolling... i'll tidy it up when i get a chance..
Track started to dry out around 11 o'clock and having managed just shy of 60 miles all morning on track i did just shy of 35 in one sitting, getting faster and faster and almost a gear higher consistently. Picked up a slight vibration and came into the pits to investigate and found the wheel bolts had come loose (torqued up when the wheels were swapped). Put it down to the load on the front left, but it happened again first session just after lunch. Bit more torque and they didn't come loose again that day, just got in the habit of checking all 16 with the torque wrench before going back out.
With the track shut for lunch more showers came and wetted the drying line again which wasn't ideal but with no more rain forecast it dried pretty quickly and was a real hoot after lunch. Berger came with me off here and had a couple goes in the car and it was great fun even as a passenger.
Afternoon was a total hoot and levelled the playing field with the cars that had done well in the morning. Was with a golf r for a few laps which I didn't want to let past but he positioned himself in traffic such that I had to yield.Annoying as because he then held me up in braking and cornering and then he was 0.1mph faster on the straights and wouldn't let me past. Lasted a good few laps though without his brakes melting which i was surprised by. Couple of fiestas which were very surprising in terms of speed including 1 that was apparently a 1.0 EcoBoost but had an intercooler bigger than mine and he walked away on the wet track with his road tyres. It was faster than the Mk6 MR200 he was with which wasn't much slower than us.
Oil temps stable at 115 all day, coolant barely went above 85 all day so a good day in that respect though the dipstick for oil is on min which makes me think i'm losing a bit through the breather as I can't see any leaks anywhere and it was higher the day before. Will invest in a catch tank before the next day I think as the breather at the moment just runs to air but i've never lost any before..oddness.
There was a race truck that turned up with an M3 which you can see in the pics, another random race car, some hot rod thing, a bentley and a radical in a race track. Not sure radicals should be on track days tbh as they're stupidly fast. The Bentley came out in front of us after a track closure and then after 1 lap dropped it in the craner curves and went into the tyres.... uh oh. expensive mistake with lots of carbon bits on he recovery truck...
I've had a random issue a few times with fuse 25 blowing on the car, for instance it blew randomly last week when i was driving back with the toyos in the boot. I hadn't ever sat down to look for this, but knew which fuse it was and carried spares. The guide just says &quot;5A clock/fuse&quot; but mines' only ever had a 10A in and it was blowing. I put 3 in over the course of the morning and they lasted anything from 5 mins to 30 mins and each time it popped the speedo/revs/fuel gauge died - not handy on a trackday. I had to up to a 20A fuse which isn't ideal, but it worked for the rest of the day and got me home at which point I took it out. I could smell hot wiring when i was unloading the boot and putting a 10A into the circuit yielded a popped fuse instantly with ignition off. Quick look at the Haynes diagrams and lo and behold fuse 25 is boot light via the switch... which I don't have anymore. Turns out the idiot who owned the car before just cut the two wires, leaving them capable of touching each other but in this instance also shorting on the speaker wiring which is still there. I'll get rid of it at some point when i can be arsed, but with those taped up i'm back to a 5A fuse and no popping... result. This is why the lights weren't on in the pics above as i wasn't sure if it was related or not.
Now needs new brake fluid, pas elbow rotating and new fluid, new engine oil etc... All in the garage already but just need the time to service it. A good day all in.
I'm Si btw
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- (The other half's wheels)